Okay, NZ surf is epic. The best part is you don’t have to venture far from town to feel like you’re “living it” too. Here’s the view from the coastal walkway.
The 2019 Super 8 Series at Fitzroy Beach, sponsored by New Plymouth Surfriders Club, was yesterday. Sets were farther out and “bigger than it looks!” But for reals… waves faces were 3.5 meters (11 foot). I met some new folks including a cool high schooler who knows no fear, not even level 2 physics class rattles him. (pink jersey above).
This day the surf at Back Beach was clean, even at high tide. The waves broke in sections, spread out the surfers, and provided space for longer boards. The vibe was great. There was a jump in the surf the following day. Bigger sets mean overhead, whomping close outs ( or “walls of death” as I used to call it). Des surfed again on our pinky, 8.0 surftech and got a few thrills.
The surf changes rapidly with the daily large tide fluctuations. So, when it’s good you’ve got 2 hours before it isn’t.
Of note, my camera has reached the end of it’s life. The autofocus fatigued, necessitating manual focus to snap photos in the prior posts. Now that function has expired too. The photos on this post were taken with my old iPhone, in my wetsuit, in the cold and rain. Please forgive the quality.
Below are shots of “the Groin” surf spot, perfect for short boogie board rides. Biking farther north along the coastal walkway, I usually bike pass these guys, “moo!”
New Plymouth’s many in-town surf breaks have a few obstacles to overcome, but once you get out to the points (way out there) it looks amazing. I surfed around a corner at a calmer spot called Piggy’s and Des likes the clean lines off Belt Road. Yesterday I captured a few images at lower tide and watched the surfers navigate the rocks. Many scramble out with no booties, tough Kiwis.
MetService surf forecast was a 9 at Fitzroy and the waves didn’t disappoint. Gorgeous as! The Stand up paddlers caught plenty a few hundred meters down at East End and, thanks to the southeast winds, all of New Plymouth experienced good sized breaking waves. I’m keen on going out tomorrow if I can find a longboard spot or…nice shoulder to ride. Might be bigger too, whomp!
There were plenty of clean waves today at this in town beach break. The outgoing tide walled up the earlier peelers at Fitzroy Beach.
12,000km southwest of Port A.
Harvey who? Port Aransas celebrated its 107th Birthday with several traditional Old Town Festival events. The Expression Session Surf Contest felt like an ocean-centric revival of the spirit. Folks gathered, cheered, photographed, swam, surfed, ate, laughed and played on the beach. It was a gorgeous day! Thanks to everyone who stepped up to make it happen, especially Cameron Pratt, the first to say, “We’re gonna do this!”
When it’s windy, hot, and crowded on the beach, the evenings on the backside of our island are blissful. The last two are shared here. In Piper flats light breezes blowing through the mangroves surrounds you with a whistling sound as you drift along. Herons squawk loudly and egrets track your every move. At Charlie’s Pasture jackrabbits bound on and off the trails, often leading you on a good chase. Water birds loop above then land for a stroll in the flats.
Whether you walk, run, bike or boat the other side is the best place to be at sunset.
If you weren’t at the Port Aransas Beach Pole Vault meet on Saturday, you missed some red hot action! Temperatures were high, so was that bar the athletes fearlessly flung themselves over The best women jumped 14 feet and the men 18 feet; but the dedication and effort exhibited by all the competitors was world class. The coaches will tell you pole vaulting is all about speed, but without that intangible “thing,” raw talent only takes you so far. These guys and gals have it. Good luck to all the vaulters and the future world campions that came to Port A to showcase their skills.
Congratulations to Greg West of West Athletics Vaults Crew- It was a spectacular event. Click here for results/info.