Before venturing out on the water, it's important to have a good idea of the conditions you will face. In particular, water temp, water conditions, tides, wind, etc. Wind can either be your best friend or worst enemy (depending on what you're doing). Generally, it's best to avoid the wind UNLESS you are doing a downwinder. I want to learn more about this aspect of the sport as it has really captured my interest lately. I think during certain times of the year, Tomales Bay would be a great place to downwind on an SUP. A launch from Nick's Cove (Miller Park) to Chicken Ranch Beach is a run of about seven miles. The wind usually comes straight down the bay from the mouth. I hope to give this a go within the next few weeks if we get a windy weekend.
I found a nice widget for the blog on the right hand side near the bottom. To learn more about wind forecasts, take a look at windalert and iwindsurf.