Archive for June, 2008

Jun 27 2008

The Board Seen Around the World

Published by under Travel

  The Board Seen Around the World

Austin Saunders with Austin Custom Surfboards, Virginia Beach, VA recently collaborated with a customer to shape a board and send that board to be surfed around the world by a variety of surfers. According to their site about the Stoke Transmission Device (as the board is named), the board is to be passed on from surfer to surfer. Surfer’s with the board should surf it, sign the board bag, and send it on to the next surfer. They can send in photos and their story to be added to the blog. So far from their map, it looks the board has made in up the coast from Virginia and was recently reported to be in Kennebunk, Maine. Reports are that’s its headed to the West Coast and then New Zealand. Although that begs the question of how exactly the board is passed on (the blog suggests its random) if they already know the next two places it’s headed. So far, it’s suffered only one ding. Stoke Transmission Device – coming to a line-up near you.

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Jun 25 2008

Indo Video Candy – Shots from the Mentawais

Published by under Indonesia,Travel,Videos

indo rifles slater Indo Video Candy   Shots from the Mentawais

Kelly Slater at Rifles. Rifles is hands down one of the best waves in the world. It’s sister wave Kandui’s (or Nokan as in “no-can”) as a reputation as one of the fastest, heaviest, longest left barrels in the world. Though often considered not makable. There are two land camps in the Ments (although I’ve read about construction of a third at Lance’s). Kandui Resort and WavePark Mentawai. Here are a couple of clips of what you wake up to at Kandui Resort from the Donkey Patrol surf blog. These guys will be waking up to these waves in a couple of weeks.

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Jun 24 2008

Mexico Shark Fallout – Blame the Surfers

Published by under Sharks,Travel Tips

There’s no question there was some serious fall out from a series of three shark attack within one month in ZIhuatanejo, Mexico (two attacks were fatal). Theories abounded, locals went on a shark killing spree, and media flocked in. Everything from La Nina to Mexican drug runners were blamed. The area which relies on tourism has most likely taken and will continue to take a big hit. LA Times wrote an article that summarizes the incident and responses well.

Outside Magazine Blog published a post that suggests that some locals in the area and “critics” have called into question whether the surfers are to blame noting a certain “reckless selfishness” that surfers display by surfing in areas that might have sharks. Well, I couldn’t find any other reference in any media source that cited locals stating this. As to “critics,” who exactly are these critics? Aside from factual reliability of this statement, it ignores the fact that the last shark attack in the area (in Nayarit, a state 200 miles away!) was in 1972!!! That ranks it as one of the safest surf areas in the world for shark attacks. So to suggest that surfers are knowingly paddling out into shark ridden areas is absurd, as of the attack in April it had been 35 years since there had been an attack within 200 miles!

Shark attacks are nothing new, in fact it’s what sharks do and what they will always do. They have to eat, occasionally they mistake one of us for prey. It’s unfortunate and has tragic results, but also extremely rare (there’s an average of 3.8 fatalities annual worldwide and only 1 in 2007). It shouldn’t keep people from the water although when attacks do happen in certain areas, surfers and swimmers should exhibit caution. Surfline lists a few precautions:

Here are a few things you can do that will reduce the likelihood of an encounter. Don’t surf those areas that are utilized by grunion during their spawns – larger predatory fish will frequent these areas. Don’t surf after sunset and before dawn – sharks are known to migrate towards land at night. Don’t surf a beach where a recent shark encounter or attack has occurred – this one is obvious, the shark could still be in the area. Don’t surf near pinniped haul-out sites – they are a primary prey species for adult white sharks.

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Jun 19 2008

Destination: Florianopolis, Brazil

Published by under Destinations,Travel,Uncategorized

praia mole surf Destination: Florianopolis, Brazil

Destination: Florianopolis, Brazil
Time of Year: March – September
Breaks: Campeche, Praia Joaquina, Praia Mole, Barra da Logoa, Praia Riozinho
Level: All levels
Cost: Inexpensive – Moderate

Intro: Ah Brazil, a country with seemingly more similarities to the U.S than differences and home to surf culture second only to the United States. The beach is a way of life in Brazil, and they’re blessed with thousands of beautiful miles of it. They’re also blessed with thousands of other things.

Florianopolis is a peninsula in the Southern Brazil with excellent exposure to Southern Swell and dozens of beaconing beach breaks (42 beaches in all). The beaches of Florianopolis are some of most beautiful in Brazil. Brazilians have a reputation for being aggressive in the water but with miles and miles of beach breaks, you’ll see their welcoming and friendly side. And with dozens of clubs, you see the other side of Brazilian beach culture.

Through the summer months, you won’t need anything more than a shortie and trunks will be fine for most of the time. After March though the water and air cools off and you’ll want a 3/2 fullsuit. Surf is small for the summer months, but picks up after March. Though it rarely gets big, standard short board will suffice for most days.

 Destination: Florianopolis, Brazil

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Jun 16 2008

Shark Theory – Blame It on Mob

Published by under Sharks

shark mafia Shark Theory   Blame It on Mob

The Sun reports that the recent shark attacks in Mexico may be due to sharks in the area acquiring a taste for humans by feeding on bodies dumped in the ocean by the Mexican mob. The Sun reports that local authorities are investigating this theory. Really? The story doesn’t validate whether the Mexican mob has in fact dumped “hundreds of bodies” in the ocean or whether it’s been witnessed that sharks either feed on these bodies or that they have been found with shark bites in them. If there were in fact hundreds of bodies dumped, then you would think that a few would wash a shore or be found by fisherman. On my trip to Zihuatenajo in April weeks ago, I was surprised by the presence of armed Mexican marines in the tiny surf town of Troncones. There were also roadblocks with heavily armed Mexican solders up and down the highway suggesting some issues with the drug trade. But I never heard anything about bodies being dumped in the ocean. You’d think a publication like the Sun would want to check their facts and get real source not a couple of guys in a bar.

Outside magazine published a blog post, suggesting maybe surfers were to blame. In spite of all the media coverage and the hype, the risk of death from a shark attack is pretty much insignificant. Worldwide there’s an average of 2.7/year for all surfers, swimmers, and beachgoers. Pretty slim considering how people are out there in the water.

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Jun 12 2008

Join the Surftherenow Network on Ning

Published by under General Surf

Check out our community network on Ning, join to discuss surf travel, surf destinations, travel tips, surfboards, and everything else surf

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teahupoo mckenna Join the Surftherenow Network on Ning

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Jun 11 2008

Fuel TV’s Surfer Fix

on surfari Fuel TVs Surfer Fix

If you’re a surf media junkie like myself and your monthly surf video purchase and four surf magazine subscriptions just don’t seem to be enough, Fuel TV has some great surf content. A friend suggested to me last year, and I was blown away by the quality and how much surf related content they have. They’ve got two weekly shows dedicated to surf content: Fins and On Surfari. Fins does a great job with profiles on surfers, photographers, film makers, etc. On Surfari is a travel show by a San Diego-based surf couple, Shannon and Shane McIntyre, who travel the world in search of surf and cultural experiences. Here’s an interview they did with TransWorldSurf Magazine. [Video Clips from Fins and On Surfari after the jump]

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Jun 11 2008

Shark Shield, Once Again Leaves Us in Doubt

Published by under Gear,Sharks,Uncategorized

shark device diagram Shark Shield, Once Again Leaves Us in Doubt

Shark Shield, the once touted solution to our shark fears, leaves us further in doubt about our shark-resistant future. I posted a while back about a test of theirs that went as wrong as it could go when a female white shark swallowed the device whole! (post) In principle the Shark Shield is simple. Sharks use a very sensitive organ in their snout to detect minute electrical fields generated by their prey’s muscle movements conducted through the water (or in our case, the surfer’s muscle movements). Shark Shield emits an electrical field (conducted through the salt water) that would in theory startle and repel sharks. Reasonable thinking. [more after jump and a video on the device]

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Jun 09 2008

Surf Park – The Wave of (Not Too Distant) Future…

Published by under General Surf,Travel

I must have read my first article of the promised Ron Jon Surf Park probably in 2003 in Surfer Magazine. They touted the park as right around the corner and the first of many to come. First Orlando, then every other city in the country. We’d be surfing at night, getting a guaranteed 12 waves an hour, and picking between long rolling point waves and getting shacked in a pool. Ron Jon where have been?!

ron jon wave park main Surf Park   The Wave of (Not Too Distant) Future...

The Surfpark in Orlando touted new technology that would produce a more powerful, longer, and consistent wave that could be altered to different shapes including the elusive tube.  There wasn’t a dissenting voice among the surfing public. But since then, we haven’t heard anything. I did some digging on the Surf Park website and found a recent change of plans and another vague time-line.

In February they announced redesigns  that include a two phase development. First would come a smaller wave pool with rides of 30-40 yards and then a second larger wave pool with larger waves and longer rides (6-8 foot waves and 60-80 yard long rides). They don’t give specific dates.

In the meantime,  a guy named Steve Jones is promising a wave park in London by 2011. So Ron Jon, give us some dates! We’re dreaming of chlorine barrels.

ron jon wave park second Surf Park   The Wave of (Not Too Distant) Future...

ron jon wave park side view Surf Park   The Wave of (Not Too Distant) Future...

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Jun 05 2008

Slater Wins Again! Threatens to Never Retire.

Published by under ASP Tour

Kelly Slater has had an OK start to the 2008 ASP World Tour by winning 3 of 4 contests so far (Snapper, Bells, and Fiji). He won in insane conditions at Fiji (results). He’s now of course in 1st place in the Foster’s ASP rankings leading Joel Parkinson, Bede Durbidge (huh?), and Adriano de Souza followed by C.J., Taj, Mick, and Andy. What this all means is that Kelly is slaying the tour and on target for his 9th world title!!! Bruce Irons is planning this to be last year on the WCT tour opting instead to surf whenever and wherever he wants and still get sponsored. Seems like a no brainer for Bruce, the free-surfer path of guys like Jamie O’brien, Ry Craike, and Dave Rastovich is well-established and the envy of every surfer in the world.

kelly at fiji Slater Wins Again! Threatens to Never Retire.

pixel Slater Wins Again! Threatens to Never Retire.

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