Yeeeuw, Twiggy Baker you beauty! Twig took the win at the WSL #PuertoChallenge in macking conditions. Most certainly the world's gnarliest beachie. And don't think, ah beachie, easy. Forget it, that sand's like concrete when you get pummeled into it. Crazy how more guys don't get annihilated out there. Personally think I'd drown just sitting on the beach watching....
Coupla waves about in the bay during the week. Nothing to bunk work for, but at least some "get-wet" opportunities.
We're officially heading towards summer after the shortest day of the year last Tuesday. Winter still continues to throw out some amazing sunrises and sunsets.
The shortest day of the year in the southern hemi obviously coincides with the longest day up north. JBay local Shannon Ainslie is over in Norway at the moment, and managed to hook this schweet lil sesh.....at midnight!
Couple more locals on travel missions. Seems that East Cape locals have some weird sort of in-built "find-another-local" GPS system. Etienne Potgieter and Remi Peterson managed to bump into each other at the standing wave in Munich.
For all those thinking that the working for a surf company is all free gear and waves, turns out you have to fulfill a range of obscure jobs, some of which include cleaning windows! Grant Beck making sure the judges at the Billabong Junior Pro at Ballito can see what's happening.
Pretty hectic sewerage issues at the Brighton Pier it seems. Nikolaas du Plooy got a few grim looking shots of the situation last week. Looks like that's not the only issue - on closer inspection it seems like a few big holes in the pier itself. If I remember correctly the latest coastal management plan did include a re-assessment of both the pier's integrity and the outflow pipe, but not sure when they'll actually get investigated.
Kiff to see some East Cape flavour in the latest Zag. Kody McGregor teamed up SF's Simon Fish for the back-page ad of the mag. Super clean looking shot and some fresh looking sticks.
School holidays kicked off on Friday, so expect an influx of frothing groms all over the line-up's for the next few weeks. Surf morning, noon and night whilst you can lighties!
This Wednesday see's the launch of ex-PE local Hagen Engler's new book. There is no-one that encapsulates PE in the written word quite like Hagen. His surf/lifestyle column in the Weekend Post back in the 90's was legendary, as were his collections of short stories on the local surf and jol scene. This new book promises to be a classic.
""In The Maid’s Room is a scruffy, hilarious shambles of an episodic novel set in the coastal city of Port Elizabeth, that trendsetting bellwether of national change. It’s about the surfer, stoner culture of the Bay, but also the slow ignominious death of white entitlement. There’s also lank pomping."
Pull in on Wednesday, Gino Fabbri is MC'ing, and it promises to be a blast.
Brad and Hannah are still having a rad time surf coaching over in Mex, but have to appreciate the irony of traveling halfway across the globe....and end up surfing waves like Pipe! Mind you, one up on Pipe cos always baggie-warm water, and less crowds.
The 2016 USSA Surfing Champs were held at Vic Bay last weekend. Shot to the Madibaz who achieved a bronze placing, finishing in 3rd place behind Maties (2) and UCT (1) respectively. All surfers did well to advance through a couple of heats, with standout performances coming from Dane Cox and Dane van Greunen (making USSA Surfing team, top 8)
Found a shot of the old putt-putt course at King's Beach whilst googling for image's of Rink Street to include in the article on Ocean's Surf Shop. (Check it out here)
Anyone else that used to moer the ball on the 18th hole so it shot up the ramp and onto the roof?? Notice the sign on the roof above the kiosk..."Join the South African Putting Association" They used to have Putt-putt league and national champs back in the day!
Ocean’s was PE’s first suburban surf shop, opening its doors in the Kine Park Centre in Rink Street in Sept 1979. Til then, all the surf shops had been located down on Main Street (nowadays Govan Mbeki). Rink Street was a prime location back then, and you didn’t get more prime suburbia than Kine Park, with its Spur steak ranch and Ster Kinekor cinema’s
John MacLeod had started his Macski brand back in March 1979, and soon worked out he needed a retail outlet, and Ocean’s was borne. The plan was for Denys, John’s wife, to run the shop. Things got off to a bit of a rocky start when on her first order she bought 700 pairs of polyshorts! Remember those short silky joggers the ou’s used to run in? Yip, those.
They ended up having to give most of them away. Lesson learnt.
Just 3 months in and a curve ball arrived, Denys was pregnant with Dylan. She suggested to John that her mom take over the shop. John wasn’t at all keen on the idea as argued that how could a grandma run a surf store!? Nonetheless he agreed to give her a 3 month trial. And what a treasure Mrs B turned out to be!
She was a natural-borne saleswoman, and instilled her practical sales skills to many of the surf kids who worked there, including Ernest Bendeman and Arno Lane – who now manage Billabong and RVCA in South Africa.
In about ’82 the shop moved upstairs in Kine Park, opposite the entrance to the movies. Then in about 1986 the premises on the corner of Rink Street and Park Drive became available, and the shop moved over the road into its double storey 200m2 “superstore”.
Cheron Kraak had just started up Country Feeling in Jbay – sewing her patchwork shirts and corduroy shorts at home. The MacLeod’s approached her about supplying the shop. They never used to have to order, Cheron would just send stuff in – and it would sell! The shorts went for R6.95 a pair.
Other clothes in the store included Quiksilver, Bear, Banzai and Instinct. And who can forget the lumo gear by Steve’s Original’s. Wish I still had my neon chequered shorts – they were epic! Boards were by Larry Levine, Wedge’s by Peter May, and Lyell Coney’s Country Rhythm. Wetsuits were Piping Hot imported from Aus.
Skateboards took off, and the shop stocked a wide range, and sponsored skate comp’s at the amphitheatre at Kings Beach - that cool possie between the putt-putt and the kiddies play pool. Bodyboarding was also getting big, and Macski made their own fibreglass bodyboards – complete with removable fins. They quickly evolved into the foam boards, and Wave Warrior was borne – about 1989.
Greencare’s and the Bridge had developed into the main retail centres in PE, so in 1991 Ocean’s moved to the Bridge, opposite where the movies are. This is where it stayed until they sold it in 1995, when John and Denys became too busy running their health hydro.
Even as we approach mid-winter the spell of kiff weather continues. Plenty windless days (with no swell in the bay) and a few pomping days (with swell - but chowed up by the wind). Thursday and Sunday were the pick of the week. Bit breezy on Thursday, but some waves around before the high tide killed em off a bit in the arvo.
Sunday saw a combo of great weather and really fun surf. Hopefully all the dad's got let off lunch duty so they could go find some waves!
Nice to have a few waves in the bay again. The southerly swell direction on Sunday meant a lot more swell concentrated up towards Rincon and Pipe, as the south swell don't refract as much round Cape Recife and extend deeper into the bay.
Fiji finally turned on and some awesome waves and surfing for the final few rounds. For once the ocean pulled a Kelly on Kelly - and he got timed out in his heat against Medina - caught the wave - and got the score he needed - just 5 seconds after the buzzer. Gabe went on to beat Wilko in the final and claim his first CT victory since France last year.
Dine 'n dash in the 'Kei on FRiday morning. Dylan Puttergill was sitting on his board at the Haven and a toothy friend came past to check him out. Thankfully just a trip to the hospital in a chopper, 250 stitches later and a story to dine out on for years to come.
It was the 50th anniversary of Bruce Browne's famous surf movie - The Endless Summer, this week. Essential viewing for every surfer. Sure, the surfing is seriously old school, but it's worth it for the dry humour, and the Bruce's sequence alone.
Ou's at the RVCA Store in SF musta had a late night before doing the window painting......
Sunday was Father's Day - which means you give dad every wave he wants. Chaim doing the right thing.
The train at the entrance to King's Beach burnt down late Sunday night. Apparently a fire started in the kitchen and spread uncontrollably. Sad to see a landmark gone.
More stunning sunrises and sunsets this week. Winter has a habit of making the chilly look pretty!
Winter finally arrived - and so did the swell. Saturday was the pick of the bunch, with solid lines pouring into the bay, and further up the coast. The JBU Super trial went off in epic conditions, with some of the top surfers in the country going to town on the big walls. JBay local Steve Sawyer grabbed the win - and the wildcard. Remi Peterson hooked the barrel of the day. Check out the full wrap & results here
Whilst Jbay was firing, so was the rest of the coast. Things were a bit wild n woolly at the end of the road. Heaving mountains of water blasting past the point, with some peaks twisting in around the corner amongst the jumble. Plenty of takers in the moving mayhem, and some solid sets ridden.
Even PE had some waves, although they were pretty windy to start with. The gale-force west ripped through the line-up's for most of the day. Although the late dusk sesh saw things clean up a wee bit.
Not to be outdone by the fact that the surf was cooking back home, ex-PE local Aron Simmons took to the shorey in Thailand to get wet. Nothing wrong with 30C cover-up's.....
Kiff to see local surfers being shot by local photags getting some wall-time. Alex van Rijswijck is now hanging in the Billabong store at Baywest Mall. Nice snap by Grant Beck.
The JBU Super trail presented by RVCA wasn't only about cooking barrels. Those that were kak on the day also got a special trophy to honour their (non) achievements. Check out the Comps blog to see which lucky ou has a new loo-seat. Faye seeing the funny side!
In case you were wondering why it was vrek-cold over the weekend. Here's your answer. Plenty of snow inland.
Earlier in the week, whilst things were still toasty and the sun was still blazing, Shayne McGee spotted this dude chilling on the deck at Supers with his squid lid. Apparently the ou sat with it on for over 3 hours. Gotto respect rubber-heads for their commitment!
Having decided that leopard print slops are not enough to woo the chicks, CarPark John has now resorted to the age-old chick magnet of puppies. Not sure if he managed to score some numbers whilst rocking this cute lil guy.
So that wraps up the week - sunny, hot and dead flat for 5 days, and freezing cold, blustery and cooking for two (Sunday was throwing out some monster peaks groomed by the onshore that was offshore on that side, if you knew where to look).
The theme of this year's World Ocean Day is “Healthy Oceans, Healthy Planet” and individuals and organizations across the planet are taking action for prevention of plastic pollution in our ocean.
Cos plastic ain't fantastic!
More and more plastic waste is ending up in our oceans and seas. Due to the effects of weathering, sunlight and wave action, this plastic reduces to smaller particles - leading to serious pollution. The oceans occupy 72% of the earth’s surface and they are our principal source of oxygen.
Plastic in ocean environments is deadly for many marine animals and does not degrade biologically. Cos of the breakdown and fragmentation of it into smaller particles, ocean water has been transformed into a sort of global microplastic soup or Plastic Soup. Even worse is that toxins are released from the plastic. All sorts of organisms living in or off the sea – even the smallest of critters – can mistakenly chow the plastic debris and microplastic for food. This means that often toxic waste to enter our food chain. Eish.
For more than half the world’s population, oceans provide the principal source of food, so besides screwing with the environment, plastic marine pollution can be seriously damaging to our health. Most of the plastic pollution comes from land sources - being dumped by industries and cities, and finds its way to the sea via rivers, canals and harbors.
What you need to know about plastic pollution
Eight million metric tonnes of plastic end up in our oceans every year, according to a UC Santa Barbara study in February 2015.
This is equivalent to five plastic shopping bags filled with plastic debris for every foot of coastline on Earth.
Plastic is gradually eroded into small fragments known as micro-plastics, which along with plastic pellets, are already found on most beaches worldwide.
The amount of plastic waste will be greater than the number of fish in our oceans by 2050, research by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation found in January.
Researchers estimate the amount of plastic in the ocean is set to increase ten-fold by 2020.
More than five trillion pieces of plastic weighing over 250,000 tonnes is afloat in the sea, according to a study published in the scientific journal Plos One.
The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is a vast gyre of marine debris in the North Pacific Ocean, but while the term is widely used, it is not entirely accurate. Marine debris concentrates in various regions of the North Pacific.
Eighty percent of marine pollution comes from the land, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
What can you do?
Let's keep it simple. You can save the ocean's one bag at a time. Just make the commitment to stop using plastic bags, and make the effort to take re-usable cloth bags to the shop with you. That's one less bag in the ocean. Every time you shop.
After every surf, grab a piece or three of litter as you walk back up the beach to your cabbie. That's one (or 3) less pieces of plastic or rubbish that'll end up in the sea.
Every lil bit helps, and if everyone does a little bit it can end up having a big impact.
The run of stunning weather continued, with most of the week being glassy. Some waves about if you went looking, and even the odd fun one in the bay. Thursday was the pick of the bunch as far as conditions went, dead calm and fun waves. Their lack of grunt made up for by the perfect conditions. Not often you get the wave/zero wind combo thing happening.
Cute lil penguin dude cruised through the line-up at Millers on Thursday - probably thought all the wettie-clad peeps were part of his crew. Had one swim through the line-up a while ago and asked Millers local Gavin Rishworth, who's a marine biologist, about whether he was maybe lost or something. But Gav said they can happily stay at sea for 2-3 months at a time, without having to hop up onto land.
More wildlife - but this time a seal stalking the Kowie line-up. Gave the ou's a good skrik when it first leapt out the water. Always nice once you work out it just a seal, instead of a shark. Things still hectic down Plett way, with loads cruising about Robbery area. Just that time of year, so shift your surf spots accordingly.
The north winds we're getting a lot of at the moment look like they'll continue into the week, so expect some more pretty sunrises and sunsets. Dean Cothill always captures them perfectly!
Some pretty rad ding repair cover-up art by the peeps at the St Francis Bay Surfboard factory. Check em out when next you head west, as there are a few shapers operating from there.
Embrace the inner-narcissist in you. Admit it - everyone loves surf shots of themselves, and getting video is even cooler. If you're keen to have your sessions in JBay or Seals filmed then get in touch with Stanley Badger who'll capture your every tube and turn.
Boys will be boys. Even when they 60. Chatting to John and Alan in the shop during the week and next thing John bolts out the door at a rate of knots. Turns out he'd spotted a hot chick walk by and had dashed out to get a better look. Gonna say getting stalked by a dude in leopard skin slops has gotto be unique!
Lekker to see Dennis Ellis getting featured in the Herald this week. Stoked to see them covering some surf news, which is way better than the usual mayhem and murder stuff.
The Boardroom hosted a phat jol on Friday night, to celebrate EP's (ie NMBS's) success in the recent SA Masters Champs where they hooked 2nd spot. The bring n braai turned into a "party-til-you-die" with many of the ou's waking up on Saturday morning quite happy that there wasn't any surf about. Broken ballies....
PE's waterman Richard von Wildemann is over in Hawii at the moment for the Molokai Surfski Challenge. Not much in the way of surf on the North shore, but not wanting an opportunity to check out Pipe he went out there for a swim, and dove out a couple fins from the reef.
Whaddya looking at!? Luckily he's just a harmless basking shark. Which is fine once you realise he's harmless. But sphincter-testing prior to that realisation.
So that wraps up another lekker week in the bay. Looks like more of the same for the week ahead. Lekker weather, but a bit thing surf-wise. El Nino still has us in his grip. this time last year was much the same, not a helluva lot of swell at all.