Thursday, March 20, 2008

SURF REPORT -- Black River Harbor: surfing serenity

The natural serenity of Black River Harbor

Black River Harbor is a long surfable natural harbour in the Heliopolis Estates group of sims with a single pipeline break that runs in for more than 240 yards. Inspired by the Pacific north-west of America, the setting for Black River Harbor is truly picturesque with grassy shorelines on each side of the surf break, the eastern shore being dotted with reeds, pine trees and cherry trees. The western shore borders the main Heliopolis sim and if one continues westwards, Monkeh Barrel is about 350 yards away. The length of the harbour is marked out with hazard marker lights to help guide boats around the waves and away from other hidden water hazards.

The uninhabited eastern island border of Black River Harbor provides a quiet meeting point for surfers or simply a place to chill out and there are a couple of open wood camp fires to help keep surfers warm in the near constant cold drizzle of the harbour. You will fine a wrecked sailing boat at the north end of the island (someone clearly didn't pay much attention to the hazard markers!) and you should be able to hear the sounds of some woodland birds. If you listen carefully, you may be able to hear flocks of Canada geese flying high overhead.

The view looking to the west across the eastern island

The western shore is more hilly, has more pine trees and experiences the odd thunderstorm on occasion. The western hills sink into the harbour creating an interesting shoreline and waterfall in nearby Heliopolis runs into an inlet linking up with the main waterway. A stone waterside 'meditation zone' has been built by the owners, surrounded by flaming torches with another wood fire. Divers will find kelp beds off the northern edge of the shore and shoals of yellow fin tuna, angel fish, butterfly fish and blue tang. There is also another sunken sailing boat wreck if you look for hard for it.

Pipeline waves break right down the centre of the harbor from north to south, in single file and veerying a little to the west towards the Persistence sim due south and Ambrosia Island south-west. The pipeline break is clearly marked with yellow and red lit hazard markers and has a nearly 45 second run. Meanwhile, to make things interesting, two sets of ocean foam waves break diagonally across pipeline break from north east to south west and from north west to south east.

There are no commercial facilities at Black River Harbor, giving it an 'out in the wilds' appeal (watch out for the bears). However, for those that want to explore under the waves, the sim offers visitors free scuba gear (just click on the sign) including a face mask, flippers, air tanks and wetsuit! Visitors can rez their own boards at the harbour and there are usually free boards available on the shore for use on the sim.

SURF REPORT -- Monkeh Barrel takes no prisoners
Black River Harbor