Those of you who actually read my ramblings will have noticed a common thread to my choice of surf craft. Personally i believe style is all important in surfing, i don't care how radical your turns are, if you have an ugly style i'm not interested. Having been initially drawn to the style inherent in traditional longboarding, once i started to experiment with shorter boards i looked for shapes that would still allow a smooth flowing style, one that works with the wave, rather than trying to beat it into submission.
When i'm trying to explain it to others i often term it like this: Conventional shortboarding is all based on getting vertical, drawing very "up & down" lines on the wave. The surfing i'm into is based very much on drawing more flowing lateral lines on the wave, heavy single fin logs on small waves, two and four fin fish on bigger waves and lately, the ultimate lateral trim machine - the displacement hull.
Some of you will relate to that, some of you will think it's boring surfing. Thats cool, each to their own, the world would be a boring place if we all liked the same thing.
It's probably clear to anyone who checks here often that i think style is important when you surf. I think everyone has an innate type of style, a natural look to the way they surf, be it smooth as silk like Dane Peterson, nonchalant like Lopez at pipe or just plain different like Alex Knost.
Although it is possible to work at surfing in a certain way, it always looks slightly contrived compared those who are lucky enough to have good style naturally. Obviously "good style" is a very subjective judgement and to a certain extent a personal assessment.
I've spent a lot of time watching video of people surfing, both other peoples films and the footage that went into my two. After a while it's very easy to identify different people from the way they move, the body positions they adopt, even if they are riding similar equipment, doing similar things, on similar waves.
I'd like to think i am at least a little smooth when i surf but my own weird style quirk is pointing my index fingers, especially on my left hand. Don't ask me why, i'm not sure it is crucial to successful balancing, but i do it on a skateboard or a snowboard too. Check the photos!
It's a massive cliche but the early bird often does get the worm, in surfing terms anyway. On this occasion it was Mr Rowe, UK agent for if6was9, reaping the benefits of a dawn patrol for a quiet logging session at a normally busy spot. One of the last few before the barefoot run across frozen sand became too awful we had to break out the booties!
Seems a distant memory with our current sea temperature!
Oh and Happy Valentines to my girls. You light up my life every day :-)
We have some of the biggest tidal range in the world, tides are sometimes as big as nearly ten metres (thats 30 feet ish in old money). It sucks when you walk for ten minutes to the sea (in freezing temps) paddle out then wish you took the other board you had in the van, especially if you got halfway down the beach with the board in question first!
Guess thats the downside of having a selection of sleds to choose from and a luxurious position to be in!