Spring swell is upon us!

Yo….

Well, all western coastlines have been alight with groomed groundswell, offshore winds and back to back sunshine this past week.

It makes you appreciate the perfection that lies on our doorstep when all the elements combine. We often feel inadequate as a surfing nation to our neighbours who suck every drop of Atlantic power and are favoured by blocking high pressures. Through a winter plagued by stong on-shores, we have finally been blessed by a unsual early spring, offering optimal surfing conditions and record-breaking temperatures.

The following shots were taken at Saunton Sands, with a few from Croyde Bay thrown in for good measure. Blinding glare and awkward tides, made for tricky shooting conditions.

Be proud to be a UK surfer!

Philip Hill crossing it up.

Greg Norman sunset re-entry.

Greg Norman on his way to the nose.

Croyde Unknown

Gallery of both sessions taken at Saunton Sands and Croyde Bay – March 26th-27th 6 -8pm

Check Greg Norman out @ http://gregnormansurfer.blogspot.co.uk/

For use, prints, high res please contact.. http://surflit.wordpress.com/ http://www.facebook.com/pages/Surflit/100867850009380

North Devon – Croyde, Saunton and Castrol Oil?

Yesterday’s new swell picked up over night and was looking punchy at dawn. As the sun rose so did the winds. They were predominantly offshore but slightly from the South, which put an uneasy wonk on the water’s surface. The howling offshore made it pretty much impossible to get in to anything, but still, a good days surf.

The winter sun was out in force, making it blinding to even look at the water’s surface. (Thank god for his invention of polarized sunnies :) Is amazing to see how many people were in the water, even for January in the UK. As sea temps drop you would think the lineup would have thinned out slightly. Don’t get me wrong, it’s nothing compared to summer, but still, a good turn out for a chilly January day. Surfing has boomed and is booming, and will continue to do so.

Low-tide, Croyde A-Frame coupled with 1000 Knot winds.

As I was power walking down the beach (trying to stretch the ankle out) I came across a dirty circular character littering the Devonshire coastline. An oil drum! Of all things it’s hardly what you want rolling past you in the surf. The owner had also wrote his name on it – Castrol.  It makes you wonder where it came from, was it at one time full of oil? ( I hope not) Oil companies are irresponsible, as are the majority of people with money to burn. They participate in a bit of ‘window dressing’ – making their company seem like it’s concerned about the environment, and then go and litter the globes most precious resource; the sea. I don’t care whether it contained oil or not, it’s the simple fact of you don’t want to be seeing a Castrol oil drum on a beach. Shame on Castrol.

Anyway this is how a UK beach should appear; clean and basked in morning sunshine.

New Frontiers

Hey guys

It’s been a while I know. I am still in recovery for the broken ankle. I had a few complications with the healing process but I feel like it is slowly getting there. Just nowhere nearly as fast as I would like.
Anyway, I have moved to be closer by the sea. North Devon to be exact so within spitting distance of the nations favourite beachie Croyde.
Took a drive down to see the sunset this evening and it appears the new swell is already filling in. It was not supposed to arrive until tomorrow. Chest high, clean, lots of rights and a stunning backdrop, what more could you ask for?

Baywatch Superfreak – Kelly Slater

Everyone knows there is no surf in Florida. So why o’ why has this sunny, yet waveless state managed to produced the worlds best surfer.

It is not a matter of opinion whether Kelly Slater is the worlds best surfer ever to have existed, its fact!  The man is a machine, can you imagine dominating such a sport to such an extent that you can win 10 world titles. The scary thing is, he won his first when he was 18 and his last when he was 38. Let’s think about that for a second. Can you imagine being in your prime at 18 and then 20 years down the line still being at the top of your game.It’s not like surfing is an easy, effortless, lazy sport like golf. (Kelly is even incredible at golf) Surfing is physically demanding and with the progressive youth of today busting airs and flips, Kelly has done well to not to lag behind.

Many have described Kelly as ‘super competitive’ and I think that’s what keep’s him juiced. Kelly wants to prove year after year that he is still the best surfer out there, he wants to show that he can still win against anyone and will carry on doing so for many years to come. Just look at what he did at the US open at Huntington beach. Following criticism from fellow competitors for not showing at Jeffery’s Bay, Kelly smashed every person he was up against with ease and won the competition.

Kelly is just one of those people who is good at anything he set’s his mind too. Whether it be surfing, body-surfing, golf, anything. He is good. Almost too good. Surfing doesn’t get too much recognition as a major world sport, and maybe it shouldn’t. Yet it is important as members of the surfing community to understand what we have. We have possibly the greatest sportsman to have ever lived. It’s hard to think of any other sport where someone has won a world title 20 years since their first. Also has anyone ever dominated a sport so much for so long? I sincerely doubt it.

The question is should Kelly stand down and let someone else have a go, or should he just keep on killing it?

 

Surf News – Billabong Pro Tahiti 2011

Today’s the day people. Hopefully things will be kicking off at 6pm (UK time) for this years Teahupoo stop on the world tour.

Things were looking so smokin’ yesterday that organisers decided to broadcast the free surf on the live webcast. Never before has this been done. It was a strange, digusting yet wonderful thing seeing 30 of the worlds best fight and scrap for the barreling lefts. Imagine that, going out to your local spot and there being every surfer from the world tour snaking your waves. Anyway you can watch it here. A hour and a half’s worth of pits.

And catch all the live action here

Today the swell is dropping but they will most likley still win. From wednesday next weeks things will step up a few gears and the new swell will seperate the chargers from the timid. There saying thursday maybe a lay day (tow day) due to the swell being too big to paddle.

Surf News – ASP claims another

http://www.aspworldtour.com/

“I feel best when I’m free-surfing” – Bobby Martinez

‘The dream tour’. On paper it seems exactly that. Travelling the globe competing in a sport you love, surfing the world’s best beachies, point break’s and heaving reefs. You wake up in the morning, hop down to the beach and surf a few rounds against your mates; if you loose you get paid anyway, if you win you get paid big bucks. All in all, its hardly a 9 to 5 at the office. So why does it seem to push so many away, leaving them with a bitter taste in their mouth and a feeling of recent against competitive surfing.

Goofy, lip-cracker Bobby Martinez is the next great surfer that has thrown down his competitive jersey in anger of the ASP. Bobby regularly vents his frustration on Twitter, and we all saw it at Bells when he lost to Taj and then basically told the judges they were idiots. In a in depth interview with his board producer, Channel Island’s, Bobby explains what it is about the tour that he dislikes and explains what his plans are for the future. Check it out here.

So why does it seem so many want to steer clear of the competitive arena. We constantly here people going ‘it’s a hard life on tour’. Really? I’m sure 99% of us would drop everything for a glimpse in to their world’s.

I beleive there is two different type’s of surfers. One one hand you have Kelly, Jordy, Kolohe, Mick, Adriano. On the other you have the likes of Machado, Rastovich, and Wade Goodall. Some are born to compete, regardless of their bank balances they want to win and stay with the world tour for as long as their bones will take it. Then there is those who are competent of making it on the world tour, yet opt to for a life of pursuing their own desires.

I believe this divide is due to the nature of surfing. Surfing being such a soulful experience that enriches your own life, is sometimes best kept just to yourself. It seems that many resent the whole competitive life of surfing, alongside the exploding corporate industry as it takes away the basic fundamentals of what surfing is.

Taj, A.I, Sunny and now Bobby Martinez have all grown frustrated by the ASP. Andy took time out and dropped off tour simply because he did’nt like it anymore. It seemsclearing the fog of competitive surfing from your mind allows the creative juices to begin flowing again. Bobby has finally recieve a much deserved sponsor from FTW. FTW is owned by Icer Brands that owns the likes of Rocawear and Sean John so its sure to give him the backing he needs. Let’s not forget Bobby, lets follow that legendary backhand snap and that explosive attitude wherever he may go. Congradualtions Bobby. Freedom is with you.

Surf News – Teahupoo ASP outlook

Chopes (the hot head) is renowned as one of the heaviest waves in the world. It undoubtably takes the crown for the most feared wave on the ASP world tour.

The Billabong Pro kicks of this weekend and fingers, arms ands legs crossed, it looks as if there’s a swell on the horizon.

The late Andy Irons made a glorious comeback last year and raised the trophy in a much deserved win. This year, who’s on the cards? For me Nike 6.0 star Michel Bourez defiantly has the potential to snag it from the pack. Firstly, he is a Tahitian. Returning to his homeland for the most breath-taking event of the year must push him a little bit more. Secondly, he is not nicknamed ‘The Spartan’ for nothing. He thrives for heavy conditions. When no one else will go Bourez will for sure. In a recent interview with Waves magazine, Bourez said “Teahupoo is why I wanted to be on the tour,” he explained that  “I just put my mind to surfing. Right now, when I get home I might train for a little bit because there’s going to be a long leg so it’s going to be hard. I need to be ready physically.”

You can catch-all the live action here courtesy of Billabong

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