Kissing the Reef
CARNAGE IN PARADISEAfter arriving the previous afternoon I skipped lunch and went straight out for a surf while everyone else was having a feed. It was only a couple a couple of feet but it gave me a chance to feel the reef out with only a handful of guys out. The next morning the swell was slightly larger but so was the crowd, so by midday a new swell had started to kick in and with nobody else out I thought it was time to try my spoon out….big mistake! By the time I had walked up and where I had to jump off the edge of the reef I knew it was a stupid move in going out on a spoon, but with the only advantage that I can sink and duck dive the sets with ease, so I was in the line up in no time and the swell was increasing and sweeping down the reef with the incoming tide. The winds were more cross shore, in fact we never had a day with true offshore trade winds blowing the whole time we were there, but after trying to catch 2 smaller waves and getting mowed down before I could even get to my knees, I had to ride one prone, with the other one breaking over my back even though I was kneeling. Now I never use a leash or legrope when riding my spoon, the zero floatation means your board will normally pop up near you if you do loose it , well standing in waste deep water and seeing my spoon just laying a few feet away , I turned my back to the ocean and went to swim toward my board only to get pounded from behind by 6 feet of foam and was pushed face first into the reef…..all I heard was crack as my face impacted and lucky enough I took the brunt of the blow with my forehead, but it still broke and split my nose right on the bridge and some how ripped the top of my left hand, so I was luckey enough not to be knocked out and was able to recover my spoon, which now has a nice little scar running down the bottom, and make my way back to shore, much to the laughter of my fellow travellers ……little did they know what was in store for them in the following 2 weeks.
Yes , a bit hard to kick into a wave on a spoon
by the time you are able to kick into a wave, it will just mow you down
I turned my back to this wave and received a face full of reef
at least the fin is intact
I feel blood
Now for the lime treatment to kill the bacteria
The Scarmatra Files part 6 from adam williams on Vimeo.
A few days later I was able to give it another go on my spoon, with the conditions a lot cleaner and settled I was able to catch a few waves, but with a decent crowd of surfers in the line up, I couldn’t sit on the main peak of the reef, so I had to paddle further up and take off deeper.
Every take off was a late one, unlike riding my kneeboard, you cannot paddle as well as kick , so this made the take offs interesting, but apart from that first day , I made every take off , my knees landed in the sweet spot, and never lost my spoon once, it was just a pity that there was so many surfers in the water to compete with.
Fellow surf traveller and kneeboarder Mark Able below, also known as the Wookie because of his body hair, was unfortunate enough to hit the reef not only once but twice , at least he surfed a few days in between injuries, but the last one did his shoulder in and was out of action for the last few days, and to this day is still having problems back here in Australia.
Uncle Brian Manahan tried to rip his nose from his face, fortunately they were able to stich it back on and after a day he was back in the water surfing
Worst thing was it was his own board that did the damage to his face, but nothing Nanung the Sumatran Ding Repair guy wont fix
The Scarmatra Files Outakes from adam williams on Vimeo.
I got the boys to make me a spare fin for my spoon and took my spoon and bonza down for them to check out.
3 days later and 500,000 rupees later I had a new fin
Nanung the Ding Repair guy, watch the Outakes video to hear Nanung speak about repairing boards
Nanung was impressed with the glass keels and workmanship that went into making this board.
He does a roaring trade in making fins, these were Mark’s order, first day he went down and ordered 3 sets, so by the end of the trip they were ready to go.
SCUMM IN SUMATRA
Hand planes anyone? We had these made by Nanung at a costly price of 500,000 rupees which is close to $50 aus
Bubble TimeMy wife had pack a couple of those bubble toys to give away to the local kids, well us big kids had fun with them and this was way safer than the local fireworks that were for sale
Oh what a feeling
pictures by Craig McRitchie
Stay tune for the next instalment