Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Lizard

I always figured it was called the Lizard because it comprises of serpentine rock but apparently its comes from its Cornish name "'Lys Ardh'" meaning High Court as opposed to neighbouring town of Helston which formerly possessed a lower judicial rank within its Celtic sted.

An ancient place. The most southerly tip of Cornwall and hence the United Kingdom may be home to some great secrets, but to talk about its significance in surfing seems sheer lunacy. Its beauty earnt it the label of "An area of outstanding natural beauty", the geography and ecology is such that the second you slide onto its flat top from Falmouth or Helston you will know what I mean. In summer the cliff paths flourish, cattle grazes, Cadgwith wins awards for traffic bottlenecks and people spend a fortune on wild camping (its more expensive not to get a toilet these days.)

 The Lizard is undoubtedly special  not only because it is place to visit but never journey through but because its Ophiolite is the stuff that gets those dirty little geologists chomping at the bit. Simply put the Lizard is the ocean floor lifted of the seas bed by tectonic movement. That explains the steep cliffs, the flat top and the fertile soil.

 From a certain surf spot on the lizard there are blow holes, that pop before ejaculating violently. There are the largest monoliths I have ever seen strewn around covered in lichen and bird shit with equal aplomb. There is even a clue to the destructive nature of this area of coast.

 The Lizard even in today's age of GPS has a lifeboat station where active service is very much a feature for the brave cornishmen who volunteer. The Lizard is polkaed with wrecks that has brought divers to the area especially on the east side and has driven fear into many a worthy sailor not least of all the Spanish Armada.

 The Lizard sticks out way to the south of the Penwith bulge. The drive is a long way from other spots and should you not know where to go, which tide to surf it on and which wind it requires you can burn half a day without seeing a wave. It's probably not worth the drive, if the waves were that good you'd know about them already, you see them in mags, people would let on. Just a quaint  little idea. Still its a great place to spend some time and is home to Cornwall's best pasty.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Tim Curran's album "Versus"

I like to take a random punt on i tunes once in a while, how else can you be pleasantly surprised, not knowing what you're buying and you've got a few shockers under your belt, can lead to a broadening of vistas.

 As I'm off games again, with yet another spasmed back (cricket) I've been going a little bit mental, climbing the walls etc. Watching perfect Trestles on the web cast didn't help much, neither did checking out Dane Reynold's blog, where he surfs fairly ordinary waves, one's I can expect to come across and yet the outcome is rather different.

Picture: Tim Curran is also an accomplished surfer who was responsible for the surfing in "Sipping Jet Streams" on the Italian segment, a great surfing flick meets art house travel film.

 But Tim Curran's album did strike a certain chord with me. An eclectic mix of folk, rock and jazz keeps you guessing what's coming next and my spirits lifted like a sun rise...you can't ask for more from an album, so I thought I'd pass on his good vibes.

 Of course my rehab program on my back consists of a lot of swimming. Tim's song "Swim" featuring the somewhat dreamy chorus "I'd rather swim home", seemed such a benevolent call to front crawl, that my mind swam in it.

My mind roamed back to Byron Bay on those beautiful Aurelic evenings, when the sun burns the sky as Helios transports it to its daily resting point. Every evening a lone figure would paddle his Kayak across from Watergos in the south to nearly Ocean Shores to the north. He transported me back there and I actually touched a memory and smelt it again as if for the first time.....wonderful. Thank you.

 So buy it, listen to it, whatever...good stuff.

 Next on my experimental list to try are Herb Alpert and his then band "Tijuana Brass", I'm thinking of taking a punt on "South of the Border" as an album and I'm getting pretty excited about what I imagine Sergio Mendes will unearth. Inshallah.

Sunday, September 12, 2010


Trestles looks like one of the world's most shreddable waves, a wave I imagine anyone can surf and therefore where personality comes out. Trestles is also the only event in 2010 when you can see Rob Machado surf live and for that reason alone I will be watching.

This interview with Rob cracks me up. America we love you but laugh at you too.

With the world title really open and the first rodeo flip being completed by Pat Gudauskas in a competition, it seems that tricks will be on show. With a reduced number of entrants things should be hot from the buzzer, the swell forecast also looks good. Click here to watch it live or by replay.