Finally Some East Swell!

After my north trip, I headed back to Auckland.  I was invited to stay at a few of the kids flat that I went to the Great Barrier Island with, and I took them up on there offer.  After a few days of hanging out and  going to a massive music festival, the surf report finally indicated some significant east swell was headed for the island.  Two of the guys from the flat where headed north, about two and a half hours to Ocean Beach near Whangarei.  They told me that this spot was a good swell magnet and would pick up the due east swell very well.  They where headed up with another friend that had a little wave jumper pontoon boat, and had room for one more.  So at 5 a.m. I followed the truck and boat up to Oceans and hallelujah, there were waves!

Ocean Beach with East Swell

Ocean Beach with East Swell

After a mediocre morning surf because of the tide and wind, the boys decided to do a little exploring.  We drove up the coast and launched the boat in an estuary.  We strapped the boards to the front of the 12 foot speed dingy called a thundercat and headed for the ocean.  To get out past the surf, we road the estuary current, past a bar break.  We had to dodge surfers, rocks and sandbanks, then time the throttle to punch out between sets.  I tell you the Kiwi’s are fearless.  I am still trying to figure out if they are reckless, or just very knowledgeable.  We made it out fine, and where skipping across the water, with 5 of us crammed into the boat with legs basically locked and no room on the deck.  Two of us held the boards in place as we pitched over 5 foot sea swell rolling into the shore about 1000 meters to our left.  I wanted to take my camera out in the water housing, but I had no way to protect it on the bumpy boat ride, so it stayed behind.  I wish I had pictures.

We pulled up next to a point / bar break that was reeling left.  We beached the boat, hopped the current out and got sucked to the break.  By the end of the session I couldn’t lift myself.  The boat ride back was bumpy, and with noodle arms I had a hard time controlling my body as the boat pitched and rolled through the sea.

Once we had the thundercat out of the water, the other guys headed home. I decided to drive back to Ocean Beach to camp for the night to get a dawn surf as the swell was peaking overnight.  Once back at Oceans I made dinner at the van, and ran out for a sunset shoot.

Ocean Beach Rocks

Ocean Beach Rocks

South Oceans

South Oceans

Oceans

Oceans

Oceans

Oceans

Shore Break

Shore Break

Shore and a Lone Tree On A Point

Shore and a Lone Tree On A Point. I ran down here close to sun down to take pictures of the shore break, the tree on the point and an island behind it because it looked exactly like a sketch I did years ago for a painting or tattoo. I couldn't believe how similar this scene was to what I had drawn. Unfortunately the clouds rolled in when I was shooting and obscured the island in the background. I think I will re-draw this....maybe my first tattoo?

Surfer

Surfer

Golden Sunset

Golden Sunset

Golden Sunset Dunes

Golden Sunset Dunes

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The Next morning I awoke in no particular hurry and got suited up to have a surf, as I approached the beach I saw a large event tent and realized that there was a damn surf contest on.  I was pissed!  I had to head way north up the beach, and paddled out at the spot we surfed the morning before.  It worked out, I was alone and dropped in on some of the biggest peaks I have ever attempted before.  It was a great session!

After the surf, my arms where shot, and I drove back to Auckland, exhausted and smiling.

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