With all this extra time on my hands thanks to Covid-19 isolation I've been sifting through some surf photos I've taken over the past 10 years of travel. Im not that great behind the camera, I'm a lot better at the journey which got me to the place where the photo's were taken. I thought these were worth sharing and then encouraging others to share theirs. Surf and travel/adventure are intrinsically linked, and no doubt theres a good pics and stories out there out there so feel free to share.
Some Java delights couple of years ago
Hey Freeride, Ralphie tell you about the Red Bull Dungeons comp back in the day too?
Yeah, nah. He's a quiet achiever. And a good egg.
Yep, Ralph and Shae arrived in Jardim the second time I was there, with 3 boards: 7'0, 8'0, 9'0. Charged.
Somehow ended up breaking his back in 3ft beach break waves at home. Go figure.
Yeah, that was gnarly. Broke his neck and nearly drowned. In miniscule junk.
I ended up living in Croyde for a coupla years. Surf coaching. Good crew. Good times.
Nice one, Pup.
If you're still in touch, say hi from me. Contributed to his post-op fundraiser, but haven't been able to reach them since. Hope they're good.
Taiwan is amazing.
The surf isn't like the last place though. Then again, ain't many places on the planet that are.
Pretty bird too. Attracted to the sweet sweaty stink of consumed Bintang!
Great shots , Frazer G.
Throaty pit at the end there. Nice.
There’s a pair of azure kingfishers who live at the Hindu shrine where you paddle out for one of my favourite surf spots. I feel like someone’s watching over me when I see them before I paddle out. Sometimes I’ll chill for a while till they appear.....even serendipity can do with a hand up occasionally.
x 2 on Taiwan.
Haven't surfed but I know blokes that go on strike missions over there when everything aligns.
Food is awesome and people are really cool.
I get the feeling Taiwan might be the next place to blow up sadly... Hearing about it more and more of late.
Is it fickle enough to escape?
Haha. That 6th shot!
Taiwan is a great spot for food of all types. Maybe the best.
That restaurant though!
Here's what our beverages came in:
The joint was called Modern Toilet.
Pupkin, now you're taking the piss.
The ensuite! Hard to take a shit in though..
Seen a pic of a bird just like that, they love a drunken mess in sub tropical jungles apparently.
Believe it or not!
Actually, quite easy to believe.
You've got to be shitting me!
There's some weird cats around on this planet.
Any truth to the rumour that the chicks from “Two Girls , One Cup “ are looking at setting up a franchise operation of Mr Whippy style trucks to peddle their unique brand of soft serve ?
The surf world is such a tiny one. I've bumped into Simon all over the place and Chris is the cousin of one of my old mates Nick. He repped for Gul wetsuits for a while and I'd catch up with him pretty frequently when he was passing through our town. Charger.
The grainy brown left might not look so remarkable until you know how far up the Bristol channel it is. Pupkin would know it I'm sure.
The six degrees aspect of surfing has provided some amazing connections over the years; chance meetings that revealed how small the surfing world still is - definitely smaller than the cliched six degrees of separation.
I did my first trip to Hawaii solo. The guys I was surfing with at the time weren't really into it but I had a taste for the bigger stuff. At the time I was also walking a fine line between prime time fitness and full blown substance abuse.
I met Simon almost straight away and we clicked. He took me under his wing and I signed up for his monastic surfer's routine: sleep, rise early, eat well, and surf like a madman. Just focus completely on big waves and getting your body and mind in shape to ride them. It was just what I needed at the time. He'd even hit me up between seasons making sure I was still on track for the coming season, had been saving my money, training my arse off etc.
Somewhere along the way Chris fell in with us and we ran as a trio for a while. I've got extremely fond memories of those years, and I'm eternally thankful for meeting Si. Just this morning I got out a photo album of his wedding on Waimea Beach, when we bought the lucky couple a wedding present of a blood red 10ft gun with Si's name written down the stringer. The look on the bride's face...
How long did you used to post up in Hawaii , Stu ?
Generally for three months.
Did you work over there ?
What as ?
I often worked as a cleaner. Free rent in exchange for an hour or two a day cleaning. I was fine with that. The exchange rate wasn't very favourable to Aussies back then and it made a big difference for long stays.
Did you ever surf Honolua ?
No, but one year on the eve of a big swell a mate flew over there. I was thinking about joining him but didn't. Can't recall the precise reason but I think it was just that it looked like a good Waimea swell, though money might also have been a factor.
He came home reporting flawless 10-12ft Honolua, but he didn't even get a set. Chockas all the way through with a heavy island vibe, so he had to pick off scraps.
Was happy with my decision to stay.
Judging from footage of seen of Honolua that would have to be one of the hardest Hawaiian waves to paddle out and get a proper smoker at.
Seems like a heavy, talented local crew who don't get to surf it that often. So when its on they aint gunna share
Do you rate Waimea ?
It just looks like a drop.
That “ island vibe “ sounds fucked.
At the time I really liked it. Towards the end of my time there tow surfing was starting to take hold and you could sense that Waimea's days would soon be over as the world's premiere big wave spot. Nevertheless it was stiil a place people spoke of in high regard, and it was fantastic to be a part of it, and also to test myself.
The last part of that sentence is probably the most important. If I'm brutally honest, many of my motivations were to test myself; see if I was really up to the standards I'd held myself. Always thought I was capable, but you never really know until you go, right?
It's kinda why criticisms of Waimea as a lumpy short wave just never bothered me, always figured they missed the point. Which was: Are you gonna spin and go when it matters?
And sure, the drop can be utterly outrageous, I'm sure many people ride it for that feeling alone, but me, at that point in my life, I just wanted to know if I was gonna go.
I went back a few years ago, arrived on a big Waimea Day more than fifteen years after I'd last ridden it, and I just wasn't drawn to it. I could conjure the old feelings, got hits of deja vu watching crew psyche up and paddle from the corner, but I wasn't compelled to join them.
I’ve never been drawn to big waves, just good waves.
If it’s good and big , I’ll go out but not just cause it’s big alone. Probably why I’ve never surfed any really big waves. I think that past a certain size you’ve got to have a motivation beyond just enjoying the ride .....obviously not everyone thinks this way.
So it’s good to get a little insight into your motivation.
I love a good big technical drop.
Me too. Even if the wave closes out or runs off, if you stick it and make it to the bottom- it can be a huge rush.
Me too. Even better, a big hairy roll-in:
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Maybe not that big- ha ha!
Sheesh IB, thats a grower!
That is mental.
One of my favourite little clips. You'd have to be pretty damn sure that you want it.
There's footage of Taj B at solid HTs with epic roll-ins. Yep, found it:
Starts around 3:45, and the wave at 5:15 is a beauty!
That wave @ 4:00 to 4:15 his toenails would've been cracking fibreglass.
They tried so hard to hide the JetSki.
You reckon, Udo? I always assumed that they were genuine roll-ins, and never looked for a ski.
My local, which is pretty much a glorified C-grade wave (albeit fast and powerful), will sometimes let you have the easiest 3ft roll-in into a 6ft+ grower, and it's the best feeling I know.
That Taj clip is up there
The first song especially, even though the footage at Hts is all time, nothing better than great surfing matched to the right soundtrack as case in point the first part of that clip is
Epic photo's gentlemen.Thanks you all for sharing.
Pupkin your amazing photo of the shark in the wave should be the poster for the #[email protected] campaign or the next Jaws movie!Fantastic foto!!
Would he really be towing into ht’s? One of the most perfect paddle waves in the world. Especially if you’re Taj
Towed or step offs for sure...could Taj have paddled that Wafer in at that size ?
edit : Towsurfer,com more footage
Maybe they did paddle some roll ins
2nd edit : was paddled ...on a 5'10 ...fark !
I reckon he's gotta be paddling it. If he was towing he would be lining up for the barrel section straight up, and not the spilling roll in at the top. He paddles some sucky beasts at rabbits, but he did tow Norths on that big day a few years ago (regular close outs) in the morning and we paddled it that arvo. If my memory serves me correct Taj may have been one of the WA crew to hit the goldy with a ski on one of the cyclones a couple of years ago maybe ?
Udo Yeah absolutely he could. I’ve sat on the boat and watched 8-10ft ht’s doubling up like that. Taj could surf it blindfolded.
I didn’t want to know about it.
No skis in that clip
When I first saw pupkin’s sharky looking pic my immediate thought was that it was the same break as a picture I posted recently on another thread as seen below. The shadowy silhouette is actually a reflection of the dry rock shelf that the wave surges over?
That rock is the one thing that stops that particular wave being truly world class, and for years we discussed whether it was possible to blow the thing up.
But I’m sure that rock slab has saved the spot from being on the radar of a lot more frothing travelling surfers so it’s probably a blessing?
Of course I could be wrong and they’re two completely different waves? The angles look the same?
Way back when I think 1996 the swell jumped big time at HTs the depth gauge
on our charter went up 15ft on the sets. Anyway 3 of us went out on 7ft guns there was one other charter there nobody ventured out from it. It was big really big the skipper latter said it was probably the biggest hes seen it. Anyway it was like we were surfing a outer bombie the take off was a double up when you paddled on to one you delayed standing up until the ledge double up went up the face then you dropped down the face so a surfer of the caliber Taj Borrows could easily handle paddle ins without assistance. It was a very exciting day the highlight of the trip really. Tell you what thou I certainly didnt double arm drag trying to get tubed it was pure survival surfing for me.