Watch: Uluwatu // The Price of Entry

Stu Nettle
Reels

With the trades kicking in and the traditional surf season beginning, the crew behind SoB - Surfers of Bali - are regularly updating their YouTube channel.

The latest is from Uluwatu, a big Bommie session, wittily titled 'The Price of Entry'.

You reckon those SOB's are messing with our heads..?

Cos I reckon most Australian surfers would gladly take a bit of a rinse while paddling out if that was the transaction fee for some of those big blue walls.

Instead we're border-bound, waiting for a jab and the government's next call, which they appear in no rush to make, and most of us can't even bullshit our way into Indo for 'work reasons', leave alone afford the quarantine upon return.

Comments

scrotina's picture
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scrotina Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 11:03am

lol thats fucked, poor old mate at 2 minute. yeah those walls look fun, but i reckon that kind of thing happens a lot there. all that work and paddling, and the end result is a walk of shame back up to the entry point with tired shoulders.

memlasurf's picture
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memlasurf Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 3:02pm

No walk there it is a long paddle of shame from half way to Padang, easy 20 - 30 minutes.

143 Degrees's picture
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143 Degrees Friday, 4 Jun 2021 at 9:05pm

At that size on the right tide you can sometimes actually find a runner most of the way to Padang Beach. And depending on your perspective, the walk back to Ulu's comes with a tiny bit of honour. As in you aren't usually doing that walk unless it's properly big. You've probably only missed the cave because you're trying to paddle around out there on the biggest board you bought with you from Aus (i.e. way too small). I reckon usually even the guy ripping on his backhand might struggle to get waves - my guess is he's getting into them because it's glassy - instead of the often howling-up-the-face trade wind which kinda means unless you're a magician (maybe he is) you gotta have a proper gun to be able to paddle in. Pretty sure yellow board guy wouldn't be bringing that one over on Jetstar...

zenagain's picture
zenagain's picture
zenagain Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 11:19am

Gotta feel for the bloke on that nightmare paddle out. Ha ha! We've all been there though.

Fella on the yellow board looks like he's on the right equipment.

GuySmiley's picture
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GuySmiley Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 6:17pm

Yep he got the lollies alright

dandandan's picture
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dandandan Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 10:48pm

I am fairly sure I used to surf with that bloke a lot. Loved to paddle past people all the time when a set came and get into earlier than you and say "Wow this wave is incredible!" or something similar, and was just so beamingly happy that you couldn't stay mad at him.

ringmaster's picture
ringmaster's picture
ringmaster Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 11:22am

That was very therapeutic viewing.

stunet's picture
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stunet Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 11:29am

Yeah as per text, not very sympathetic.

Have a jaffle, kick back with the warm tropical air against your skin, then try again later.

Least he's got to Indonesia...

Blowin's picture
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Blowin Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 11:45am

I can honestly say that the last month or two has been so satisfying here on the Least Coast that I’ve barely missed Indonesia. Been plenty of beltable walls, hearty tubes and big fish in warm water and amongst a very manageable crowd ie mostly empty.

WA is packed as Fck- 45 camped at the Quobba homestead alone ( normally 10! ) - and Indo inaccessible should be soul destroying but it’s all a bit meh at the moment.

No doubt in just a few weeks when the water temp drops, the whites are everywhere, the swells tend due south regularly and the pelagics are well gone and I’ll be crying into my pillow for some of that Indo magic.

Until then .....tidak Indo, tidak masalah.

zenagain's picture
zenagain's picture
zenagain Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 12:01pm

I just had a squiz at the Greeny/Snapper cams and apart from stopping counting at about 150 in the water and watching multiple drop-ins and blatant burnings, I watched one bloke take off backhand on the rock and proceeded to mow down some poor bloke with his out of control longboard. I hope he didn't hurt the guy he ran over.

I always say I miss the bath warm blue water of the Goldy but after watching that for 5 mins- nah.

Blowin's picture
Blowin's picture
Blowin Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 12:12pm

Gold Coast is a grand buffet set for a capacity of 200 diners with 10,000 hungry mouths turning up and jostling for a feed.

There’s more to the Least Coast than the rat infested open sewers of the SE QLD points under Hollywood swell conditions.

Not so long ago I was watching a flawlessly peeling left break for 35 seconds duration without a soul surfing. 3-4 foot, offshore wind and somewhere between Green Cape and Cairns.

zenagain's picture
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zenagain Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 12:10pm

Don't worry cobber, I'm well aware there's plenty of silver to be had if you set aside the Gold.

GeorgeR's picture
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GeorgeR Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 12:37pm

Never been to uluwatu.. is the only way ashore via the cave? must be tough in these conditions when tide is up

amb's picture
amb's picture
amb Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 2:29pm

@George , yep & yep although you can get in on Thomas Beach, very harsh on the feet and a long walk back.

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 2:52pm

Yep and you need to aim well south of that cave otherwise its the paddle back around or down to Thomas which isn't that bad apparently (never done but a mate has) but plenty of steps to get back up.

goofyfoot's picture
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goofyfoot Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 3:32pm

Huh? They made the cave, didn’t miss it..

udo's picture
udo's picture
udo Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 7:44pm

I remember that one from Jim...
Itching to see some Bombie footage with Jim riding his Hit the Road Twinfin.

Bnkref's picture
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Bnkref Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 8:11pm

I picked up one of his Magic Carpet twinnies second hand last year. Ripper of a board. Very fun to surf. Goes like a rocket.

tango's picture
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tango Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 8:59pm

I do love a yarn from someone who can not only write, but is not bullshitting. Never tried to put a size on it, but with his experience and ability you know it must have been....err...solid.

simba's picture
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simba Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 2:10pm

Stu, seeing as you have plenty of time on yours hands these days ......................any chance of a review of your edge board/s?

monk's picture
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monk Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 3:13pm

Check out how far that guy further out gets dragged at 1:33. Make me feel better about always getting dragged so far there - for a wave that doesn't look that powerful I find it has an insane ability to push you back when trying to get through breaking waves. Farking fit buggers who can do a lengthy session at that size.

t-diddy's picture
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t-diddy Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 3:44pm

how's the turn @ 6:58

Spuddups's picture
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Spuddups Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 4:28pm

The guy with the yellow board wins the day.

stanfrance's picture
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stanfrance Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 6:49pm

I would actually give my points to the give in the long sleeve rashie. The guy with the yellow board has a balding patch. He needs to see Advanced Hair....yeah, yeah

Vic Local's picture
Vic Local's picture
Vic Local Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 5:59pm

I was at Ulus during a massive swell and some young bloke tried to get me out to the bombie. Went down to the cave to assess the situation and decided to wait for low tide and Outside Corner.
As the water drained out of the cave, a dopey hippie followed it and started doing some religious ritual halfway in the cave.
No matter how much we yelled he wasn't listening. I've never seen anyone get smashed by a wall of water that hard. Ended up scoping the hippie out from underneath the concrete stairs. He did the journey completely underwater and it's a miracle we found him.
He definitely got a truly religious experience at Uluwatu.

dandandan's picture
dandandan's picture
dandandan Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 10:53pm

Classic one VL. Half of the Ubud crowd has taken up residence in Ulus these days, setting up their usual blend of very expensive new age pyramid schemes, so there's plenty of dopey hippie rescues to look forward to when we're finally allowed to leave!

Vic Local's picture
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Vic Local Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 8:28am

Might have to make up a T Shirt saying "I don't rescue influencers" for that mob.

Bnkref's picture
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Bnkref Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 7:31pm

Couple of those guys on shorter boards did really well. As too the guy on the yellow gun.

jezza64's picture
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jezza64 Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 7:54pm

Even when you make it back to the cave the job isn't over. Came in on the wrong side of the rock at the entrance one day and the back wash off the wall picked me up and slammed me against it.... fun times :) always got to leave enough petrol in the tank if you need to do a go around :)

tango's picture
tango's picture
tango Tuesday, 1 Jun 2021 at 9:42pm

I reckon watching normal people surf is a bit like a nice warm bowl of soup and a hot fire. Something very comforting about a clip like this and not knowing if they're going to make a wave.

"Go on, get around it.....go....! Go...!!".

Robo's picture
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Robo Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 10:56am

Last time I surfed Ulu the bamboo ladder was there, the good old days lol.

ringmaster's picture
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ringmaster Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 7:09pm

Same here mate.....

Progress eh

OHV500's picture
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OHV500 Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 11:08am

Whats with the concrete stairs - Haven't been there for 40 years so it looks as though I've missed a lot. The times are changing.

Vic Local's picture
Vic Local's picture
Vic Local Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 11:48am

Two types of indo surfers: "bamboo stairs people who have seated their backside off in a Wartel" and newcomers.

stunet's picture
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stunet Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 11:54am

So young surfers and old surfers then?

Doesn't leave much hope for young kids, if that thinking is true.

Vic Local's picture
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Vic Local Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 2:03pm

I prefer "experienced" rather than "old".
Reckon the kids today have missed out on some of the world's great challenges: Sweating your ring off in a 2m by 2m windowless sweatbox in Jalan Jacksa in the early 90s, using traveller's cheques at a bank owned by a dictator's son, and taking a 30 hour straight bus trip on the "kretek express". Fuck knows what the driver was on to stay awake?
Kids these days arrive at an Indo airport and some driver is holding up a sign for them. Air-conditioned cars, pampering, and no dysentry or Malaria. They don't even know what they have missed out on.

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 2:15pm

OK Abraham Simpson...the world's fucked, show's over, you missed it kids.

You know, I interviewed the guy who discovered Cape Solander and Aussie Pipe and he gave up surfing in 1973 cos of that same attitude. A lot more surfers have given it up for the same reason.

1973! Where were you VL, cos apparently the surf world was already fucked by then.

But you see, the people who've just started surfing, including kids, they don't know what you or anyone else had, and more imprtantly they don't care. Everything is new to them. Try and see the world through those eyes.

I could go on a rant about how the only constant is change and our challenge is to deal with it, but it's been said by religious leaders and Facebook prophets for years, and it's true. Accept the change and stay happy.

I fucken hate the old guys on Vintage Surfboards Collectors page or wherever who whine about "the old days", like they're ticking off days till they're dead in a grave. Get busy living as some fuckwit in a Hollywood film once said.

Anyway, the low key joints still exist. I've got proof and my kids will beat you there.

Vic Local's picture
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Vic Local Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 2:20pm

I'm not all "old man yells at cloud" Stu!!
My last two trips to indo went from 5 star lux in the Ments to a 1 star camp on mainland Sumatra with the boy. Both heaps of fun. I still reckon I did the boy a big favour with his first indo surf trip being a super low budget affair. The only way is up, baby, for you and me now.

stunet's picture
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stunet Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 2:27pm

OK. Dunno what you mean by the "only way is up" but.

Low key means spotty electricity, no AC and no beer.

seaslug's picture
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seaslug Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 4:31pm

Or having a quivering ring piece flying with SMAC, even the chickens needed comforting, poor things

simba's picture
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simba Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 2:36pm

no beer ....super low key

udo's picture
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udo Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 2:44pm
gsco's picture
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gsco Thursday, 3 Jun 2021 at 6:34am

A great read, thanks for posting the link.

goofyfoot's picture
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goofyfoot Thursday, 3 Jun 2021 at 11:03am

Yep that was really good cheers Udo

Island Bay's picture
Island Bay's picture
Island Bay Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 3:01pm

Yeah, that was good.

I was a relative late-comer to Indo, with my first Bali visit being '88. Still, there might have been 25 guys at Ulus, 10 on a pumping day at Padang, and I surfed with the same crew of 4 for two weeks straight at Bingin - which was a 40min walk from the motorbike park.

By '95 everything was very different, but still lovely, and after 20-30 trips my wife and I still love it (2019). And can't wait to go back. You can still get sizey waves with very few crew on them, and kreteks and strong coffee after a morning surf will never gets old.

zenagain's picture
zenagain's picture
zenagain Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 3:04pm

Scuse my ignorance, but what is a kretek?

udo's picture
udo's picture
udo Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 3:08pm

Stuarts fav lung buster
A Filterless Clove ciggie...big log of a thing

zenagain's picture
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zenagain Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 3:34pm

Is there hash in it?

Blowin's picture
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Blowin Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 3:42pm

No. But the smell is perhaps the most evocative in all of surfing.

Hmmm.....maybe not the most evocative. That title would be reserved for the scent of the Hawaiian Tropic sunscreen you rubbed ontothe back of the exotic foreign lass you “befriended” repeatedly, and like rabbits, on your first overseas surf trip.

And maybe the smell of Honey surf wax.

Or maybe even the smell of open Indo sewers and two stroke fumes. Not sure how they ended up seeming romantic, but that’s nostalgia for you.

zenagain's picture
zenagain's picture
zenagain Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 4:46pm

I reckon the smell of Survival wax is the most evocative surf smell for me. Or that faint amonia smell in the whitewater.

stunet's picture
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stunet Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 4:53pm

Freshly set resin for me.

zenagain's picture
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zenagain Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 4:59pm

Of course, that too.

I'm on fire with the spelling today- ammonia.

freeride76's picture
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freeride76 Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 6:13pm

ammonia smell in the whitewater?

zenagain's picture
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zenagain Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 6:28pm

You know that faint bleach/ammonia smell when you're in the whitewater and it's hissing and bubbling and frothing around you. It's almost imperceptible but it's there. It's usually very fleeting. I notice it more in winter and usually at a beachbreak just as I'm paddling out.

You've never experienced that?

Anyone else?

Ray Shirlaw's picture
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Ray Shirlaw Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 6:34pm

Apparently its Ozone and I think its good for you

zenagain's picture
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zenagain Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 6:56pm

Cheers Ray. Thankyou. I don't smell it often but I sometimes get that faint whiff of bleach which I'm obviously equating with ammonia.

And of course it's good for you- if you're paddling out, it can't not be good for you. Physically, mentally and spiritually.

freeride76's picture
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freeride76 Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 6:59pm

Can't say I've ever noticed it Zen.

I like the faint fishy smell you get around here when there are lots of bait balls around.

Blowin's picture
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Blowin Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 7:03pm

Maybe it’s the smell of rotting seaweed in th3 water you’re thinking about? Seriously. It’s a scent reminiscent of the Southern Ocean and the SW here in Oz.

freeride76's picture
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freeride76 Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 7:05pm

yeah, I know that smell.

there's an iodine type sharp smell that the seaweed produces here on really low tides when the lagoon is exposed.

udo's picture
udo's picture
udo Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 7:12pm
zenagain's picture
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zenagain Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 8:12pm

On fire Udo. Well done.

dazzler's picture
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dazzler Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 8:42pm

Don’t forget the smell of burning plastic wrappers & foam Popmie cups

san Guine's picture
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san Guine Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 9:52pm

smells like... victory?

freeride76's picture
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freeride76 Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 3:07pm

time for me to go back.
after a last trip to Bali in 2012 I swore I'd never go again.
too much of a shit fight too much of a wanker magnet.

those big blue Ulu's walls look too damn inviting though.

stunet's picture
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stunet Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 3:10pm

Essentials in any Indo first aid kit:

udo's picture
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udo Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 3:21pm
Island Bay's picture
Island Bay's picture
Island Bay Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 3:37pm

Yeah, that's a beauty! (The photo)

Gudangs are too heavy for me. These are my faves:

https://smoking-room.net/sampoerna-a-mild/

megzee's picture
megzee's picture
megzee Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 4:06pm

Well there ya go....this piccy is testimony to the herbal medicinal value of cloves......Can see the instant relief in your eyes Stu..
Combined with a mushroom omelet an hour before sunset and I am sure you were back in the water about 7 days later...
No wonder the hippies flock there

stanfrance's picture
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stanfrance Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 6:54pm

Tactfully omitting your nipples there Stu....subtle

Blowin's picture
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Blowin Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 7:03pm

He’s lucky those nipples aren’t fish food on a remote reef.

lostdoggy's picture
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lostdoggy Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 8:02pm

"Well, after a surf there's nothing like a good gudang" - Stu 'Eastwood' Nettle

udo's picture
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udo Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 3:11pm

Slim from Bali waves just mentioned Canguu is the new Kuta
over run with Euros on the Business / investment visas ...

Jono's picture
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Jono Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 3:58pm

Yep, Canggu looks unaffected by Covid

eat-your-vegies's picture
eat-your-vegies's picture
eat-your-vegies Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 3:23pm

A bamboo ladder VL
You really missed it lol
I remember a slimey old driftwood log lol.
And your right about bali being a wanker magnet free ride cos lve been going there every year since ha ha .

Vic Local's picture
Vic Local's picture
Vic Local Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 3:29pm

I bow down before you eat-your-veggies.
Tell kids these days that the road ended at padded Padang, and to get to Uluwatu required a motorbike trip though the fields, and they don't believe you.

zenagain's picture
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zenagain Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 3:33pm

Slimy old driftwood log..?

Luxury.

Vic Local's picture
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Vic Local Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 3:38pm

You had slimy old driftwood log? We had to eat our slimy old driftwood log or starve to death, but you tell kids that these days and they don't believe you.

I focus's picture
I focus's picture
I focus Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 6:05pm

Mates went to Indo in the 70's just one didn't get malaria, yeah nah.

I was late 90's, 1st though was "hmm fucked that up coming late" still any thing over 6' and the numbers soon thin out and still had some epic waves plus have met plenty of epic Indo's with a story.

And that rock in the middle of the cave entrance a mate of mine ploughed straight into that on high tide / big day nearly killed him he still has bragging rights.

goofyfoot's picture
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goofyfoot Wednesday, 2 Jun 2021 at 7:39pm

Amazing how you can go to such a tiny crowded island full of surfers from every corner of the earth and once Ulu’s gets over about 6 foot you can almost, almost, catch any wave you want.

Yeah it would of been nice to surf it with fewer people 30 years ago but you were most likely on a dog of a board, so I’ll take today’s crowds with today’s boards any day. Today’s semi-gun/step up boards are so nice to ride in good waves.
Well for intermediates like me anyway.

Horas's picture
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Horas Thursday, 3 Jun 2021 at 12:14am

I agree ...with you all .It was that back then ,it is this now .The smells ,the bus trips and of course the waves .. the life .It is of course what you make it , then and now.As was said,there's still plenty there.
Met and had a good yarn with old mate behind SOB at G - land last year,good bloke living his life ,loving it all.
Epic shot of blood and durry ,a great picture so much said there.I only know because that has been me.Tuhan memberkati. Horas

Blowin's picture
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Blowin Thursday, 3 Jun 2021 at 12:30am

Is the SOB fella an Aussie? For some reason I assumed he was Euro or maybe Indo.

Horas's picture
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Horas Thursday, 3 Jun 2021 at 12:34am

Yeh , he 's Aussie , said he's from Melbourne

Blowin's picture
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Blowin Thursday, 3 Jun 2021 at 5:44am

In that case he’s a flog.

dandandan's picture
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dandandan Thursday, 3 Jun 2021 at 10:53pm

I sat next to him once after a session at Ulus while he was filming. I remember thinking it was strange that just one dude with a camera and a shitload of time on his hands pumps out videos that are watched by so many. His videos have been watched more than 51, 000, 000 times (kind of wish I never looked that up to be honest).

freeride76's picture
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freeride76 Thursday, 3 Jun 2021 at 9:49am

it seems weird to just sit there filming other people all day long to put up on You-tube.

does he not surf?

Wyre's picture
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Wyre Thursday, 3 Jun 2021 at 10:36am

He prolly hires some locals to point the camera and hits it all day!

Hiccups's picture
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Hiccups Thursday, 3 Jun 2021 at 10:59am

I guess he gets enough views to monetize it hey. Shit behaviour.

Blowin's picture
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Blowin Thursday, 3 Jun 2021 at 11:43am

Particularly when he extends past Ulu’s , Canggu and Keramas. Factor in the copy cats and it’s a race to the bottom.

freeride76's picture
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freeride76 Thursday, 3 Jun 2021 at 12:01pm

seems a helluva lot of copy cats springing up.

jacksprat's picture
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jacksprat Friday, 4 Jun 2021 at 3:15pm

The best thing about retiring from surfing is not having to listen to the ridiculous stories.

goofyfoot's picture
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goofyfoot Friday, 4 Jun 2021 at 3:22pm

You hung the boots up Jack?