Probably worth making sure your young children are not in the room for the "interludes" stolen from 70's soft porn but a fine little dvd all the same. Shot in 16mm and very much on the arty side of things it's made by Tin Ojeda and features some of the usual hipster subjects as well as some lesser known faces.
Highlights for me were Devon Howard on his Tyler egg, Dane Peterson killing it in his super smooth style and the deepest reaches guys finding trim and style on very long and very short boards....
I just stole this picture of Jools from Gulftream aboard his 5'0 Seapea from their blog (pic is by Gordon from devondigitalimaging.co.uk)
Jool's post is pretty much spot on, talking about the simple joy in racing along a wave, beating sections, climbing and dropping, weighting and un-weighting to generate speed. As he says, it's a fundamental part surfing that is often overlooked in the media in favour of bigger brasher, faster, "radder" manouvers. Yet it is one of the most fun things you can do on a wave. The Seapea and it's mini simmons brethren are some of the best boards for this, taking the foundation in speed that the fish platform woke the world up to and adding afterburners.
Well after what wasnt really a banner summer for surf, autumn continues to deliver so far! Another couple of days of long distance, well organised swell with perfect winds.
I've spent my sessions on a mix of the two boards in the picture. The 5'8 Larry Mabile twin keel mentioned a couple of posts ago and the 5'2 Tyler Warren Bar of soap. It's been interesting comparing the two boards and also comparing the bar of soap to my SeaPea. The twin keel fish definately carves a turn better and takes more weight through the turn without slipping out but loses out in speed generation and section making. Definately fun though.
The bar of soap, as i've posted before, is one of the best boards i have owned. It's definately got more shortboard influence than most mini simmons, there's no stringer, the wide point is not forward and the bottom shape is roll into a deep vee'd double concave (spiral vee?!) That translates to a board that feels really alive and spritely under your feet with great down the line speed but slightly less smooth flow than the single concave of the seapea. Off the top it's looser and easier to whip through turns, feeling like it really sits up high in the water.It's not quite as good as the SeaPea in junk waves though, it definately likes just a little bit of shape.
Boards come in all shapes and sizes and colours. There are lots which are just there, but there are some that speak to you, well to me anyway. Some perfect confluence of curves and colour that draws the eye from across a crowded board room, begs to be touched, to feel the smoothness of the gloss coat and the fluid way water will run from concavity to convexity and off the rails.
I think hulls and hull derived shapes are often like this. They have such a soft, organic form with no hard edges that is always pleasing to the eye, sending you mindsurfing that perfect point with flowing high line and deep railed bottom turns.
So the "indian" summer continues with a particularly over hyped swell on the weekend. Up here it didnt really show until sunday by which time i think almost everyone that owns a surfbpoard east of exeter was in the water. Croyde would probably have allowed you to cross the bay with dry feet using peoples heads as stepping stones. Saunton meanwhile had surfers as far as the eye could see by 8am and the car park shut by midday.
In the end, the long period affected the quality and as the tide dropped it was the smaller insiders that kept their shape rather than closing out. Very much a no-cutback day.
Monday dawn patrol brought slightly smaller waves but as clean and fun as you like with a crowd of mostly locals to fight over them. I rode a twin keel fish for the first time in a while and had a ball.
My sis and her partner are coming down this weekend for a visit. "Medium G" as he will hence forth be known (he's not big enough for big G!) lives on the edge of the peak district and is probably as obssessive about mountain biking as i am about surfing. I've spent many hours trailing his wheel at slightly scary speeds around the lakes but this will be the first time i get the chance to show him my neck of the woods. Hopefully the weather will be kind enough for exmoor and some trails with a sea view. I'm looking forward to it. Exmoor might not get quite the same hype as the nearby Quantocks within the biking community but it has some fantastic riding of everything from foresty single track to exposed moorland to edge of a cliff style rocky paths.
It goes without saying that there are some fairly big hills involved but having recently done a few rides in the vendee which is pretty much pan flat, i can happily say (in a peverse way) that i actually like cycling up hill. I enjoy the challenge and the reward of it. you would think that bashing out the miles on well surfaced flat roads is easy and therefore more enjoyable but weirdly it's actually a bit dull, even when the sun is shining! Of course climbing up something big always means you have to lose all that height somehow, and thats really where the smiles are!