September Sessions

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Warm and Windy with Waves…

September is just around the corner and this is my favorite month of the year here in Cape Hatteras. If I had to describe September, I’d say it’s the perfect combination of warm weather with wind and waves….Best month for surfing and kitesurfing by far!

Warm air and water temps normally mean boardshorts are the call, maybe only adding a wetsuit top for the evening sessions. Winds are typically from the NE or S/SE directions, as we see a shift from SW to NE on average during the 3rd week of August. While these NE winds are “cooler” than our SW winds, they are not “cold” by any means, with air temps still in the 70’s to low 80’s. What you shouldn’t be expecting is day after day of SW winds, as these are more typical of February through mid-August. Once that wind shift comes late August, we typically see far less SW winds and far more days of N and NE, as well as scattered days of S and SE winds. This is why when you think of Cape Hatteras kiting in the Fall, you normally think of epic ocean kitesurfing, either downwinders on the northside, or side-off conditions on the southside with a good groundswell. There’s also great flatwater riding in the Pamlico Sound, just on the opposite side of every slick you ride during the summer. Without a doubt, when my friends ask, “What’s the best time of year to come for wind and waves?”, I always say “September”.

* On average, we normally experience 22 days of winds 16mph or more during the month of September.

Cape Hatteras in September: REAL Teamrider Jason Slezak finds the perfect combo of wind and waves.
Cape Hatteras in September: REAL Teamrider Jason Slezak finds the perfect combo of wind and waves.

The surfing in September is also prime time, as this is when we receive our highest percentage of long period groundswells from the tropics. Most of September sees us only having to wear boardshorts, with maybe a wetsuit top or shorty as we get towards end of the month. How good is it? After missing the “swell of the season” three years in a row, I scrapped ever attending the September Surf Expo Trade Show…ever again. I think that show is the swell sacrifice. Putting that many industry people in a building, landlocked in Orlando?! You know it’s gonna be good that week! September surfing is so good here, lots of days in the chest high + range, with many days maxing out many of the beachbreaks and sending you on the hunt for piers, jetties and offshore breaks that can handle serious size. All with warm water and air! The bend on our island allows you to not only avoid the 22 windy days a month, but most of the time use it to your advantage. If it’s not blowing offshore where you are, you normally only have to drive 30 minutes around the corner and it will be offshore there…and barreling.

REAL teamrider Josh Mulcoy scoring september sessions in Cape Hatteras
REAL teamrider Josh Mulcoy scoring september sessions in Cape Hatteras

I’d say the last reason I like September so much is that it’s kind of off the radar. Yes, surfers know about it and travel down for the swells and also to compete in the ESA Easterns third week of September, but besides that everyone else is clueless about how good it is here. Hands down the best kitesurfing of the year goes down during September, and that’s going back all the way to 1998. It never fails. This is when you get the magic combo of wind AND overhead fast moving groundswell. Pro photographer John Bilderback always comes here in September, for one because he’s guaranteed wind and waves on HIS vacation, but also because the lighting and atmospheric conditions are just unbelievable during that time of year. Every sunrise and every sunset, just unimaginable until you witness them for yourself…

Book your September trip to Cape Hatteras NOW.

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