Sunday, July 17, 2011
New Zealand with Chav
New Zealand. It's not a name that I hear that often when I hear Brits talking about what surf trips they are next going on. Perhaps it's because of the 22 hours you have to spend jammed into an economy class seat or the fact that it isn't really a place you can go just for a week, and until this trip is over, I couldn't even tell you whether it was the right decision to go in winter. But as a teacher, the only time of year where there is enough time to make the flight worth it is our summer, or in the dead of winter as New Zealand goes! As with any country, the weather can make or break a holiday, and I am sorry to say that so far the weather has not been kind. Though 10 days of howling onshores and driving rain are certainly enough to whip up a meaty swell off the west coast.
When it comes to surfing, New Zealand should be on everybody's list of surf trips. With the West coast getting regular large swells throughout the year from the southern ocean, the only time you can't surf this coast is from September to November, where the roaring 40's provide constant onshores. Convenient then that there is an East coast that's also gets waves from lows out in the pacific. Seriously, everybody has heard of Raglan, and Shipwreck Bay (of Endless Summer fame) as quality surf spots in New Zealand providing point breaks with rides of over 500 meters on a good day, but the NZ surf guide has more breaks than Evil Kenevil. 450 to be exact. That's not including the spots that you can just stumble across, or work less frequently. There are endless options, for every type of condition making the chances of no surf anywhere on the islands distinctly unlikely.
With reeling points, beachies, river mouths and reefs, there really is something for everyone. As varied as the breaks are, you can also say the same for temperatures both in and out the water. Fortunately winter waters on the north island are still fine for a good 4/3, but that south island is all about 5 mil plus with booties gloves and hoods. I haven't had any ice-cream head so far, but I can imagine it's coming. New Zealand has it all. Endless surf breaks, amazing scenery, friendly locals, and tonnes of outdoor activities for if it's flat. Rafting, snowboarding, skydiving, and more bungie than a hippies transit.
Thanks Chav, love to Jenny and enjoy your honeymoon but do send us some more pictures.
Posted by Edward Lockyer at 7:26 AM