An ex-PE local from way back when, Ric Field, dropped me a mail recently with this classic shot of him surfing with his dog Simba at Pipe as a lightie. I remember finding it on the internet and thinking it was such a cool shot. So decided to find out a bit more about the shot....
Awesome shot of you and your dog Simba having a surf at Millers back in the day! Can you tell us how the shot came about? Did Simba surf with you often?
I grew up at No 1 7th Ave Summerstrand, just across the road from Pollock Beach. I’m 61 now. As a youngster I was always at the beach. I was a Lifesaver at Summerstrand and this was an 11’ paddling board….we used to kneel and paddle. It had no fin! We all rode 9’ 6” boards back in the day. I had a custom
made 5 Stringer Seal Point from those 2 guys in South End.
Dogs used to run free back then and Simba used to follow me to the beach. One day I was going out at the Pipe and Simba hopped on behind me. We surfed together a bit and then Mrs Foster from the EP Herald got wind of it and took the pic and it was in the paper. Unfortunately Simba got run over shortly afterwards
That’s a pretty old pic – which would mean you must have been one of the first generation of surfers in PE? How did you get into it?
My older brother Stan (who’s 8 years my senior) was into it and had built a 16’ plywood board in our garage ! Living across the road from the beach we were always there, bodysurfing and using those rubber inflatable boogie boards
Who were your crew back then and where did you guys used to surf? Were there a lot of guys in the surf back then?
My neighbourhood friends, Mush Hide, Derrick Silove, Lippy (Dave) Lipschitz, Gavin Rudolph and a couple of others. Many times I had to phone my buddies cos I didn’t want to surf alone. Later,when I got a bit older, I used to surf alone before.
Any funny/interesting/scary surf stories from way back?
Have broken my nose three times whilst surfing! First time at the Fence when I was 13, second time at Millers when I was 16 (Rob McWilliams rode into me!) and in then recently in 2006 I got dumped at La Lancha in Mexico. But I’m still as handsome as ever!!
Only shark I’ve ever seen in the water was a 2 footer Mush Hide pulled out at Millers and smacked it on his board! Was about 1965.
You live in the States now, right? How did a PE boytjie end up so far from home?
I left SA in 1979, went to Israel, then Oxford in England and have been in Denver since 1998, my sister Hazel and Mom were here.
Do you still surf over there, and if so what are your local breaks?
I’m 1200 miles from the ocean, so I race Vintage and Modern Dirt Bikes. But I do manage to get out to the freezing Northern California coast with my brother and nephew occasionally. They live near Mavericks. I like Mexico, and have surfed in Barbados, Ireland, and England but Millers is my still my favourite wave. I was actually there this year in May.
Thanks Ric, good to know I'm not the only one that loves Millers!
Ric and girlfriend Nedra at JBay last year. Ric used Mush's board
Ric racing Vintage Husqvarna Dirtbikes (he always wear at Halloween!)