Monday, April 23, 2018

Return Kaikoura: Jaded and Disillusioned or Mere Grumpy Old Man?

Two years and Two Months, thats a long time not to visit a place.

Reknowned for its surfing, scenery and seafood and its only 3 hours away, the logistical shackles had finally been uncuffed and it was time to head back to the surf mecca. Taking the family and staying in luxury at the  Kiwi Surf Experience pad between Mangamanu and Meatworks with stunning views of the ranges we were indeed in paradise.

 That was until I hit the water and realised that my beloved pastime and release had somehow become every one elses pastime and release also. Yes it was smack bang in the middle of school holidays and yes it was the tail end of the holiday season but holy crap was it crowded!!!
Arriving in kaikoura I was kept in good company with the likes of Alan TeMoananui and Levi Oconnor and of course the Lyons boys however this crew headed south to the Cantbury Champs and I was left in the surf state of Kaikoura alone, cold and isolated with nobody to surf with,,,,,,,,,, except half the rest of the world !!!! South American, North American , German , Dutch you name it , left right centre everywhere I looked was a man bun a goatee a pretty girl with really white teeth and all zipping and zig zagging across waves on mals and mini-mals and all sorts each calling one and another off of waves in all different languages only to trip and fall 3 seconds later and there I was amongst it all .... the hypocritical Aussie expat feeling intimidated and funnily enough, foreign !!!!
 I did manage to catchup with old mate Nash Robertson on the saturday arvo at meaties but we both only lasted 10 or 20minutes in the water because of the ridiculous crowd.
Sure there was the usual Christchurch invaders but they were mostly tolerable.

So where am I going with this?...... A few things come to mind.
Do not worry about tourists returning to Kaikoura, believe me they are already back there!
Dont get me started on freedom camping, I have a new found hate,
The waves... yes there were waves, but its kind of boring surfing alone amongst 20 others.

I went to Kaikoura to have a mid life crisis but unfortunately everyone else was there having one too.

I did however have a great time with my family and friends and can honestly say that Kaikoura is well and truly on the road to recovery and if you havent been back since the quake it sure definately is about time,

Peace, Love and Harmony

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Wake Up, Grab a brush and put a little Makeup.

Whoa Snap Out of It Nelson !!...... Whats been happening lately you say..??
Well infact not a freaking lot on the home turf to be honest.... but on the extremeties there has been some busy beavers !!
(above): Wake Up Mini !!
. First up Raul Ventura has been chasing the grom circuit around the south island and now with only one final event left in the Grom Series next weekend Raul currently is situated 4th in the ratings out of 20 for the under 18 groms out of the whole south island. The effort is fully commendable and shows what putting your head down and commiting both in and out of the water you really can achieve results.
Make sure you give the baby bru a slap on the back next time you see him.

Now secondly, our beloved yet departed Ben Windmill is back down South but flying the flag for Nelson Boardriders at the Colac bay classic last weekend and again this weekend at the South Island Champs. Good luck to guy and thanks for keeping your NBR rep,

Locally, a few boys are off to Indonesia in a few days including Olin Pilcher, Barry Fitzgerald and Keni Duke and despite the boys scoffing about it we all know what will happen when they leave...... Nelson will pump !!! and why would that even bother them you might ask? dont you worry I have the data counts on how many hits the Nelsonboardriders site gets grom Indonesia and abroad and the results are astounding. Jokes aside, wishing the boys some hell times and great waves.

OKay so locally, the waves have been less than average since Cyclone Gita failed to deliver any substanial goods with a couple of odd1-2ft windswells and another puffy one predicted for easter saturday  which brings me to my next topic...... Nelson Boardriders Pre Winter Club Day.

Basically the next weekend swell that falls between now and the end of April hoping that one does we will march full steam ahead and have a club/comp day at either Rabbit Island or Snappers condition and tide dependant ,,,  also a NBR AGM is also at Code Red Point and possibly looking at the second weekend into april for someone to host one somewhere round 15th 16th.

Aaaah Yibbidy Yibbida,  Thats all for now folks !!

Saturday, February 10, 2018

Everything Changed Forever.

(above) The Glen Apocalypse now , Photo: Sven Martin  @svenmartinphoto

February 2nd 2018, whether you like it or not... was the day...
 That was always going to happen.
A combination of storm surge and extra high tide and a large swell was the trifecta that straight flushed the pokie machine of weather however there was one missing element. However dramatic the day was with homes flooded across Tasman Bay and the greater west coast of the south island Nelson copped a beating but somehow we managed to escape the day with very little rain.
Had we have had 100mm of rain on top of the trifecta mentioned above the outcome would have been catastrophic.

The Boulder Bank was breached in at least 10 places by set waves and the high tide "brow" of the bank was combed over into the paddocks, sea and in Glenduans case, the houses behind. 
The whole angle of the Boulder Bank was changed. The inside of the hook in the cut has dropped so much that the inside cut surf break and outside cut may become its own little island within a couple of years. Harbourmaster Dave Duncan has sighted and says this is not a maybe..... but a given.

So, before we jump on the climate change bandwagon, lets be honest. 
Nelson hasnt had a  'good' cyclone season since 2004 and the highly ironic thing is we now have a new storm, Cyclone Gita,  threatning to do exactly the same damage, however a smaller tide this looks like a strong large groundswell but this time what we lack in rain shall be made up for with...... (drum roll please ) ......... Rainfall.

(above): Rabbit Island at High Tide looking more like an obstacle course than a beach .

Unfortunately, as a low lying town we have been playing a game of russian roulette with Swell/Tide Combos for a good decade, but with a damaged boulder bank and another approaching storm the reality is that now.... there might be 3 bullets in the chamber instead of one.

Nothing like a nature driven reality check. - Take care out there are and lets surf the shit out of this next swell.


Saturday, February 3, 2018


A heads up and a shout out to anyone keen to compete needing numbers to commit now for fundraising. Let us know email: or ph:txt 0223246236

Thursday, January 25, 2018

The Thrill of The Chase

So what is more exciting than surf in Nelson some might ask??
It is without a doubt the anticipation which preceeds it. Whether you stare at a Swellmap graph or delve deeper into the Madden-Julian Oscillation one thing is for sure, us surf-city frothers love nothing more than the thrill of the chase. Most of you already know where I got the inspiration for this little spill from and if you dont already know then maybe its time to pan your eyes to the horizon... Could it be that once the swell arrives it is almost anti-climatic and our eyes once again look to the crystal ball for future predictions?... Whatever or however you deal with it the anticipation and anxiety induced by an approaching swell is quite possibly the curse of the Nelson surfer.
This is why the out-of-towner will look at you puzzled when you say the word 'Groundswell',,,,

The NIWA experts late spring predicted a long hot summer due to el-nino but those same experts are
now saying past-tense that we will be in for a wet warm summer due to La-Nina

Anyhow, back to school and work we go , where the next sytem stops.... do you know .....

Friday, January 12, 2018

Weve been doing it all wrong !!

Ok so what better way to start the year than some mind bending ultimate truths.
Last Friday evening saw a great ...but short lived groundswell enter Tasman Bay, and whilst people complained about large numbers in the water at Snappers others surfed alone at other locations with the most mind numbing of all being Marco Edwards surfing Stephens Bay in Kaiteri whilst Phil Stanton hit up Patons Rock in Golden Bay pictured below.
(above): Patons Rock, Photo: Rob Davies.

Thers is an abundance of swell on the way however only the gurus will pick the eyes out of the prevailing onshore winds so good luck out there and welcome the rain like a long lost friend !!
See you in the soup.

Return Kaikoura: Jaded and Disillusioned or Mere Grumpy Old Man?

Two years and Two Months, thats a long time not to visit a place. Reknowned for its surfing, scenery and seafood and its only 3 hours ...