Saturday, October 9, 2010 - 00:00
The famous Jeffreys Bay has become our new home. Jeffreys Bay is solely famous for its perfect barrelling waves at Supertubes. From when it was first discovered surfers have been making the ‘pilgrimage’ here, sleeping on floors or in the bushes just to have the opportunity to surf the perfect waves. One of the most popular stops on the prestigious surfing World Tour is Jeffreys Bay, one of only ten surf spots on the tour.
The backpackers where we are staying is in the prime location overlooking a very fun left and right reef break as well as a right point. It is the perfect spot to always be on it when the waves turn on. Early morning sessions and evening sessions are usually the best and for the last few days we have had some great waves. There is also a great restaurant and fun bar right here at the backpackers so the only reason to leave is to walk down to the surf factory shops to get some discounted clothes or other surfing accessories.
The first few days in J-Bay we had some strong onshore winds so we kept ourselves busy going to the Lion Park, doing some swimming and a little bit of construction for a sandpit to be put in at a local crèche in the township. The Lion Park was a highlight on the trip, and everyone really love the opportunity to play with the lion cubs. The two month old cubs were cute and fun to play with whilst the five month old ones were a little more scary. Several of the boys looked rather nervous in the enclosure with the bigger lion cubs and definitely did not look too convinced about touching them. They were very playful, which for the cubs means biting and pawing as well as jumping, but bearing in mind the size of their teeth and paws this can be a little intimidating! We also got to see giraffe, zebra, wildebeest and bontebok on the drive to the lion enclosures. Getting to see giraffe up close is amazing as you really get to see their size. They are tall and big!
The wave which we have been surfing out the front is a reef break which has a been a whole new experience for the group. When I say a reef break it is a point of rocks going out into the ocean that are submerged on high tide and become more exposed on the low tide. It forces the waves to break both left and right, although the right is generally a better wave. Being a reef break means that it is consistent and easy to know where the waves are going to break, but on the other hand it makes it more intimidating. Having surfed mainly small waves so far on the trip the clean two metre waves which were coming through when the wind turns were quite a challenge for the group and a big step up from the waves they had been surfing. A few days later though we can see them getting more comfortable and starting to catch more waves. Surfing is a very difficult sport with the added complication that the canvas that we are working with is ever-changing and has many different moods. One can not just practice a certain move as it can often be a challenge just paddling out and keeping in the right spot in the ocean, let alone catching a wave. And then every wave is different so some allow more opportunity than others to practice what you are working on. Now this is not supposed to put you off surfing, because what it means is that the reward is so much greater when everything comes together and at the same time you learn to just appreciate being in the ocean and enjoy the time away from the hussle and bussle of every day life.
We have a great swell coming early next week and there is a good chance that we will get to see the famous Supertubes doing its thing running down the point, lets hope so. In addition we will pay a trip to the waterfall and the fun rockjumps there as well as digging out the sandpit in the local township and helping the Supertubes Foundation.
Enjoy your weekend,
Chris and Byron