Spit bowls and respect

This morning I had my 6th surf in 8 days, which is unusual for this time of year (I’m not complaining!). Dad & I checked out the open beaches, but the shallow banks weren’t handling to swell too well. One nice looking peeler raced through while we watched, though.

It looks better than it was... but it looks pretty good!

It looks better than it was... but it looks pretty good!

We decided to fight it out at the Spit instead – I’ve managed to enjoy three very different sessions there this week, all of which were surprisingly fun. Today there were people everywhere, and after paddling around in the crowd we settled on surfing the lefthander running into the jetty. There were some fun ones coming through, but there were a couple of longboarders and a couple of wave-ski riders who were just ruining things.

Sneaking into a hollow barrel. Photo: Johnno.

Sneaking into a hollow barrel. Photo: Johnno.

They’d sit further on the outside and by the time the waves were forming up, they would already be well on their way, trimming to the shoulder. It really irritated me because the sets had the odd nice barrel on them, but whether or not I was in the priority position, I was getting faded every time. One of the old boys even made an offhand comment about how “once we get started, we can’t pull off”, as though riding a longboard was a license to disregard surf etiquette. There was a bit of a wait between sets, so for the first hour I was very frustrated.

Dropkneeing an inside one. Photo: Johnno.

Dropkneeing an inside one. Photo: Johnno.

However, the staying power of youth paid off (ha ha) and I was left as one of only a couple of punters when the grey brigade called it a day.  The bigger ones were shaping up perfectly and I managed to get a few nice barrels.

Setting up a set. Photo: Johnno.

Setting up a set. Photo: Johnno.

Johnno was shooting from the jetty, which is an angle I’d been keen to try out for a while. The results were interesting – a few focus issues here and there but I reckon he did a top job for someone who has only used the 40D once ever before!

The morning left a lingering bad taste in my mouth, though. The attitude of the longboarders and ski riders was simply selfish and showed a complete lack of respect for the other people trying to ride the waves. I’m always left shaking my head when I see a person deliberately and directly breaking rules – unspoken or otherwise – at the expense of others.

Setting up for the end bowl.

Lining up the end bowl. Photo: Johnno.

Of course, I can take consolation in the fact that while I managed toweave through some little hollow ones, they fell off whenever they tried to take off on a steep one and spent most of the time skimming along the shoulder.

Bodyboarders would know this position... the 'end bowl is pinching and I'm trying to recover my line after going high to make it.'

Bodyboarders would know this position... the 'end bowl is pinching and I'm trying to recover my line after going high to make it' contortion.

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Categories: photos, Surf, Thoughts | Tags: , , , | 3 Comments

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3 thoughts on “Spit bowls and respect

  1. I really need to come an take pictures from the jetty, should watch the swell more often, i’m always afraid to arrive on the spot and then => no waves ! you have some nice barrels here :P !

    • davidpj

      Yes, you should! Maybe keep an eye on the gold coast surf forecasts on http://www.swellnet.com – look for mornings with a medium swell and west or north winds, the angle from the jetty is very cool, I want to have a go myself (if I’m not surfing that is!)

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