Last day of waves for 2019, and one of the better days at the local beachie.
Been a funny old year of surfing for me, the first time in my surfing life that I've noticed a marked decrease in performance, partly due to injuries and time out of the water, and partly due to....well, age.
So, one of my resolutions - I've got a few - is to concentrate harder on key aspects of surfing: flexibility, fitness, and now that the kids are a bit older, sheer water time. Rather than rely on natural fitness, which is what I've always done, actually apply myself to select areas of surfing with the hope of levelling out the decline.
Today was the second surf back after one of the aforementioned injuries, damaged my shoulder muscle when I hit the bottom at URBNSURF, and three weeks out of the water showed. More frustrating was the weight of numbers on the takeoff spot, the majority I'd never seen before, tourists staying in town or daytrippers from Sydney.
Little voice to myself: "I surf here every day waiting for great waves, and now they've arrived every set has a stranger on it."
That shit can bubble and ferment, it already had in a few local fellas, and I could see the fork in the road: Go Alpha, state your case in words or actions, maybe get yourself a few sets, but have the whole session sullied, or sit back and resolve yourself to the situation.
So I did. Ended up getting a few wide ones that crossed the flags but the lifeguards were fine as a strong current kept the swimmers close to shore. It was actually the better part of the bank.
And I hope to follow that road more often in 2020 too. Take the heat out of the moment, and make decisions with a bigger picture in mind.
Work? For me, 2019 was marked by a lack or separation between work and home, and both suffered. So I'm putting things in place to demarcate each aspect. I'm actually looking forward to that more than anything.
The environment? It's impossible to avoid what's happening around us right now, and despite what pragmatic politicians might tell us, anything we do involving further coal use makes us complicit one way or another. You may say that if we don't sell it, countries will just buy it elsewhere, but when we sell it we become enablers, and more importantly we lose all diplomatic influence in what has to be a combined global effort. I don't know what the answers are but I'm tending towards agitation as a means of forcing some action. In the surfing world, Sean Doherty is leading by example. I'd like to do more, but truth be told, the whole issue gets me down, effects my mental health, yet the malaise doesn't disappear when I try to disengage. Somehow I'm gonna resolve that this year.
I'm also gonna give up drinking this NYE, but I'm not gonna make a big song and dance about that 'cos I dunno how I'll go....
And slack line! I put up a slack line for the kids and thought it would be piss easy, but that shit is hard. Resolution #5 is learn how to slack line. Not a whole year thing, just given myself two weeks.
Surprisingly hard to get the tension into a slack line! Ours has got more use since it has been recycled into a high swing suspended from a very high branch.
Get better....not bitter.
Could always go slack lining instead.
I had to google it . Slack lining looks interesting .....But do you reckon the ensuing broken ankle would increase my water time ?
Indo in a couple of ( looooong ) weeks.
Gotta make a change myself,surf time has dwindled to a trickle and starting to question where i fit in the scheme of things these days as less surf time means skill and fitness dwindle away as well.......got to make time otherwise it will be 'i wish i did'and its gone past and lost.Getting a lot harder as well with the sheer amount of people learning/surfing so finding uncrowded spots around here anyway are harder to find..Also i need to adjust my attitude cause its still stuck in the past,probably the biggest hurdle...for 2020.
I'm gonna keep on trucking,
Bit like Stu I’ve had a year or two or intermittent good stretches of surfing plagued with periods on dry land due to injury, illness, poor conditions and family/work commitments.
Put simply I’d like to be fitter and healthier. I’d also like to keep a balance with the ledger firmly weighted towards the the side of family and fun (surf) over other commitments (work etc).
I’ve been consuming minimal meat for quite some time and dabbled in vegetarianism. From here on I’m not eating meat and will eat a predominately Plant based diet.
I just want to surf good local waves. My need to go far and wide to score prime crowded waves is next to non-existent now.
Good luck everyone and happy new year to all. Hope next year is your best one yet. Thank you all for such an interesting, stimulating, informative and fun read on here.
Stu asked 'yours', then I read on and between Stu, Simba and Solitude you've expressed all my thoughts, with a bit of Zen's thrown in. Funny when you realise there's so many others in your same boat. I would add agitation and more engagement as goals, rather than just reading and nodding in agreement or shaking my head in frustration at the keyboard. Happy New Year all!
#6: Actually use the keep cup I buy myself every year.
1. Lose some weight want to at least hit 75kg by June normally 81kg but this week im up to 83kg
2. Surf more, been hardly surfing this year, too fussy and my surf fitness and skill/rhythm suffers, really hit me in Indo took me a week or so to get my mojo and some fitness back...(basically just go out even if not pumping or even if crowded instead of making excuses)
3. But my big goal this year is too get a little house/villa going on land ive got in one of two spots in Sumatra.
4. Maybe even to start doing a bit more travel in OZ if can fit in.
I have gone plant-based as well except for fish and rarely chicken, feel great for it. I went off meat around 2 years ago, I don't know why, I just don't even like to look at it, occasionally I eat a burger if I'm out. David Sinclair does an interesting talk on eating and ageing which is worth a watch, it's on you tube
I've never been real good at NY resolutions. I mean I am good at making them, but struggled with the other part.
Recently I have been thinking about cardio vascular fitness and how I have become pretty un-fit. I basically get into my car, drive to work, get out and walk 100m to my office. Thats it. Exercise complete. I used to be on my feet all day but now its essentially desk boundness.
Something my mate said to me about 6 months ago kept coming up as a probable solution. He had gotten himself a mountain bike and raved about how good it was.
So just after xmas I found what I was looking for. Somehow I had managed to win a $250 voucher at work so after some searching I scored a brand new bike, helmet and lights for just under the 250. And while I was looking with my 10 year old daughter I brought her a bike as well!
So we've been riding every arvo since and realising just how un fit I actually am.
So this year my only resolution is to drink less and ride more,
HNY everyone and may 2020 be one filled with waves, laughter, and good health.
Love, laugh, surf, help out, be a good husband friend colleague brother, ski, volunteer, make friends, vote, read, talk.
hahaha @ mickseq, gone plant based but eat fish, burgers and chicken.
Next year i want to surf more, get fitter, work smarter not harder and enjoy being a dad.
I'd love to say have a year off the piss or drink less but i just love beer too much.
Also put away a bit each week for an Outside Corner swell chasing fund. Which leads back to getting fitter.
haha yeah I thought it looked like that after I re-read it, but I would never say I'm vego! only really eat chicken when I'm in Indo in nasi goreng and then later on that night I might have a burger because I've had about 10 bintangs! when I get back to Brissie I go plant based to try save my liver - all serious though, I do think it makes a big difference to my weight and how I feel, though could be placebo for the mind.
couple of years ago I made a resolution to listen to audible every morning on the way to and from work in the car (about an hour a day) and I must say its one of the best things I have ever done, has helped me immensely in all areas of my life and I thoroughly recommend doing it.
Start the next chapter in life.
Continue to read lots of books
Eat Healthy. not fads
Continue to not give a cent to The Big Four tech companies
Continue to not be a part of social media................. Does swellnet count....i dont think it does?? its an old school forum.
Buy more boards... from local shapers
Thumb more factory boards from Asia in brand showrooms
Catch more seafood
become the model for Volleys,...Gotta have a pipe dream
Surfjustsurf...too exhausted & too weak to even consider it...try again next year.
Gonna selfishly swap world peace for just one summer session...(If no one minds!)
tbb will donate his wishful thinking towards the crew's most outlandish resolution.
Just wished my cheeky son a 'Happy New Decade'.
Maths Dux son:"Will everyone + (TV) stop saying that...It's next Year!"
Should dad tell him, come next NYE, they'll brand him a liar again...Nah! Kids hey!
Here’s a joke for Statler :
The pope is coming to the tiny parish by the sea. The sleepy town is excited and none more so than the clergy.
The father says to the nun “ I want to knock the Pope’s socks off with our hospitality. Let’s show him the best our little parish has to offer. “
The nun then sends the choir boy out to catch the best of the seafood in the local area The choir boy fishes the town jetty thru the night on the right moon , with the right tide and using the freshest bait. He lands the largest Snapper that the town has ever seen. Beaming with pride he rushes back to the church whereby the nun is ecstatic, she gushed praise and the choir boy let’s slip an unfortunate slice of the local vernacular-
“ Will you take a look at the size of that fucker ! “
The nun is aghast ! “ The devil takes your mouth , child “ she says.
The choir boy realises his mistake and back-peddles furiously “ Oh , no Sister . That’s the name of the fish . It’s called a fucker . “ he says whilst quietly making the sign of the cross.
“ Oh , well that’s alright then” says the nun as she takes it to the kitchen.
That night is a picture of austere reverence as the Pope is served his entree in silence. The parish clock ticking in the background is the only sound as the first course is served. The nervousness of the pastor is palpable. Finally the main meal of fish is served. The huge snapper is presented perfectly. The Pope takes an initial taste and finally a hint of a smile creases his face.
The Father is so taken by this fragile hint of satisfaction that he bleats loudly “ I can see you like the fish ! “ The Pope nods his head and this relaxes the gathering who have been hanging breathless awaiting to establish if the Pope was happy with their work at the tiny parish by the sea.
The nun blurted “ I see you enjoy that fucker ! I cleaned that fucker myself ! “
The chef proclaims “ I cooked the fucker “ and then the choir boy yells “ But I caught the fucker ! “
The Pope looks momentarily confounded, then he reaches deep into his papal robes , pulls out the roach end of a joint , relights it , blows a thick cloud of smoke towards the ceiling and says “ You know what.....you cunts are alright . “
Best of luck , fortune , KARMA and whatever precarious superstition it is that will see you through 2020 without winding up on the bones of your arse or in the boneyard. Power to you fuckers.
Woody Guthrie 1943.
Up to 30 seconds on the line now. Can't step, just have to stand there doing a cheesy tube stance till the wobbles get too much.
The Boy can balance for a minute and walk 3/4 of the length.
I remember watching a fella trying it at Lakey Peak and being tempted to have a go . It looked fun. Then he fell off and fucked his shoulder trying to break his fall. Surf trip over for him.
Watching a kid ride a skimboard recently had me wondering just what are the highest risk for reward sports out there. Of course skimboarding must win with its extremely brief and unexceptional thrill vs the horrors awaiting those landing awkwardly on hard packed sand repeatedly.
Selfies in dangerous locations isn’t really a sport otherwise it’d be hard to beat.
Is Xtreme planking still a thing ?
I remember seeing a bloke learning the basics of kite surfing when it first came out. Where you stand on the beach without a board getting used to the mechanics of the kite and how to position it in the wind. Of course you're strapped into the harness at this stage and the instructor controls the kite for you until he lets you take over. Old mate is at this point, just getting the hang of it by himself when a solid gust pulls him off guard and drags him off his feet and down the beach across pebbly, shelly low tide hard packed sand. Not pretty. Reminiscent of the effect of a large cheese grater across the body.
@Blowin, towing behind the fourbie in the shorey would have to be up there
And just a little bit of advice for all those resoluters...
If you're serious about changing the patterns you're currently living; then create small, gradual changes to slowly eliminate the bad or detrimental habits and introduce healthier new ones. It will be much easier to create change and more importantly, sustain it.
Crg ....done that very same thing myself and nearly got impaled on a piece of driftwood. Easily within the Top Ten lucky to walk away events of my life. I can still recall the ( loose ) fella giving me instruction : “ Ten O’clock and two O’clock are your power zones . Just gently ease your way down to either of them and you’ll start to feel the powe......( Blowin is launched ten metres through the air to face plant the beach )
Braudulio....Yes , yes and yes. Wakeboarding behind the 4WD = tragedy.
Also up there is wakeboarding amongst the iron ore ships and running your hands along the underside of the hull to simulate a barrel ride. Not much give in the 4inches of steel if you make a mistake. Bleeding and floating around in the dirty , brown waters of Port Hedland not highly recommended either.
My 2019 also wasn't the best for surfing not for want of application, I just lost my timing or rhythm somehow. I'll continue what I started in August - eating very clean, drinking more water, zero alcohol, surfing more (although I absolutely hate crowds so sometimes I just can't face it) and exercising more with an emphasis on functional body weight and weights training that directly helps my surf fitness. Also yoga and pilates. I'm feeling great and my paddling is unreal. The penny also dropped leading into Christmas and I now more actively avoiding negative people/situations, I watch less news, TV and am listening to more music and reading books again. But my big resolution for 2020 is to finally move away from Melbourne and the MP but as I write this I still haven't a clue where and that's after almost 2 years of informally looking. Places that I have considered are currently up in flames and what I do know from the fires that flattened Marysville in hills behind Melbourne on Black Saturday is some places are never the same again or at least it takes generations/decades and the architecture that follows is never as good.
Many years ago we got the bonnet of an old car, tied it to one end of a piece of rope, and the other end to a towbar and went hooning around Kurnell sand flats, flying at 60km/h on a whip just millimetres from a substrate of 80 grit sandpaper. Fun as all hell, and wildly dangerous. One mate skinned his back to the bone when he fell backwards, arse still on the bonnet, back exposed on the sand and couldn't shift himself in time.
Another almost got decapitated when the bonnet lifted off the sand while he was on it, turned over, and he fell forward, the bonnet slicing through the air like a samurai's katana just missing his head.
@stu, have you seen The Walk? Might help with some inspiration for your #5. (Gulp)
why do you want to move away from MP GS?
FR, I have seen too many changes and none for the better, the MP is now mostly urbanised and part of Melbourne. First Eastlink and later Peninsula Link put the eastern and south-eastern suburbs in a quick dash and splash range of most surf beaches, that and the large numbers of resident surfers on the MP make for crowded surf where once it was very different. On a positive note, I travel up and down the coast a lot and it's a fact the further from Melbourne or Sydney or the Goldie you drive the friendlier and thinner the crowds all become.
Guy, thanks for Woody G list.
Sounds like you're on a good programme; good luck with it, and with finding the 'perfect' place to live. Hanging out in FR's neck of the woods has really got my missus and me thinking hard.
Cheers IslandBay and hoping you too find a gentler kinder place on the coast.
One for Scotty from Marketing, and others...
Ahh well catch ya Guy, one less in the water!
nar just kidding mate, i agree it can feel very crowded sometimes but overall its still a great place to be a surfer if you're willing to lower the standards and hunt around
That’d be a great topic - what is the best mediocre coastline in Oz?
a) does not have a world class wave
b) is overshadowed by better towns / coasts close by
c) would never get blown out even if exposed
Actually come to think of it, anyone on quieter, mediocre stretches of coast knows how good spots get and how to get them. Maybe we’d all fear our little sanctuaries could be blown out? I know I think like that a little of my corner of the coast.
That rules MP out. It has a world class wave that has been wotd on swell net lately. Crowded as all fucj tho
Did this many years ago now, and moved to a really good coast. It's a 'wanderlust' type of question, years of traveling for work had given me a pretty good idea and the result has been a good decade or more and raising kids in good waves with challenge and nature, that can dial right back to little longboard waves if you want. It was an earlier and less crowded time though.
I can think of lots of mediocre coast, 8 coasts off the top of my head (shh), how interactive do you want the shark factor to be? How challenging - frequent victory at sea stuff, no one out? Or maybe a spot that has an accessible, nice surfing experience? What frequency of days do you want to be able to surf? All year? Or expecting a season of fairly flat or completely wind blown out? How cold or warm?
Coffs coast was the forgotten coast up until 5 years ago ,not now ,people everywhere, estates going up like mushrooms and i just checked my little secret spot ....well not any more, couldnt get a car spot,pricks taking photos of mainly closeouts,dicks on there mobile phones.....probably better to go to a name break cause if you do get waves at least there memorable ones....crowd factors not much different these days im afraid.
Ain't just about the surf.. gotta factor in work, schools (if appropriate), proximity to services/transport, climate, and how the surrounding region is expected to develop over the coming years/decades.
Everything in life is a compromise. And, it's been changing for a while now (from a surf POV) with a workforce able to work remotely, and flexibly.
To be honest I could probably live just about anywhere, but I got lucky with the Tweed Coast as it ticks all of the right boxes for family, work etc and the waves are good but not epic, which usually keeps the crowds down.
After Black Saturday the Victorian Government introduced strict new building codes for housing in bush fire prone areas. They are called Bushfire Management Overlays (BMOs). The BMO changes from property address to address depending on factors like distance from forest, likely fire routes etc.
BMOs apply to new builds and where a new renovation adds 50% or more to an existing building. BMOs dictate construction types and materials used in the building as well as strict landscaping plans. It also allows existing households to cut down any tree within 10 metres of their house, trees that were once protected.
The application of BMOs on the Great Ocean Road for example has meant Wye River remains largely undeveloped since the fires given the very large additional building costs. Further, for people familiar with the hills immediately behind and overlooking Lorne it will ultimately mean most of those trees will be removed either via (re)development or by nervous householders if they aren't burnt down first.
My property address backing into national park on the MP has been deemed high fire risk. My building insurance has doubled in 3 years. Under the BMOs for my address my house couldn't be built today as no way would it comply with the new building codes nor could I plant out my beautiful garden with large shade trees that I have nurtured for 20 years.
Sorry about the yarn but my point is if the rest of the country doesn't introduce similar BMOs to Victoria's after this summer I would be greatly surprised. The coast will never be the same and yet some people like developers will welcome it because trees just get in the way of profits e.g. that guy in Yamba.
Brave new world.
Nice area's over their on MP much nicer than on the Island been in to that Sorento area a few times of late, and im like wow it's so nice and natural, but on the flip side some of those areas are hard to get in and out too its like a maze of little narrow roads, would be scary if there was a fire.
BTW. had one of the best surfs ive ever had near Coffs at a nice little sand bottom right, still can remember clearly a barrel that was just so crisp and clear like glass could see the sand all beneath and then just clear blue water all around, really miss those east coast style barrels, so hollow and straight bottomed but not life or death.
I’m staying at a place sort of near Coffs.
The vast majority of the time I’m surfing by myself which can be a blessing and a curse....there some big fish swimming around here and I’ll see them enough to be aware.
Waves can vary from amazing to shit with incredible rapidity. It’s virtually all sand dependent . I’ve had periods of weeks strung together where I’ve surfed as much and as many good waves as you’d surf anywhere only with way less people. Then there’s the times - often extended- whereby you’re banging your head against a wall wishing you were at a decent reef cause you’re sick of misshapen, lumpy and unpredictable sand bottom toy waves.
But ....it’s mostly warm and doesn’t get too cold. You can surf pretty much everyday if you’re desperate enough and it’s easy to avoid crowds. The waves can be properly world class sometimes.
Nice people, inbred fuckwits ....all types live here.
I’d never come here on a surfing holiday if I didn’t have to be here , but nor would most people, that’s why you can have a fun time in empty waves still fairly regularly.
Got to admit , I’m in the down phase of the joint at the moment. Can’t wait to GTFO. But it only takes a few hassles somewhere else and I’ll start regarding the joint in a better light. Still a nice little bolt hole.....for now.