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Extremehorizon Surfing Blog

Extremehorizon surf blog providing: regular surfing news, updates, stories, surf pictures, product reviews, surfer interviews and anything from the world of actions sports which is begging to be blogged!

Tuesday, 26 August 2008

Who is the most influential surfer of all time?

OK, so this poll is just for a bit of fun and the list of surfers here is by no means exhaustive as there are hundreds of people out there that have had a big impact on the surfing world. However the names listed here are of surfers who have formed, influenced and pushed the boundries of modern surfing. As we find out which riders are getting the most votes we'll look at producing profiles on each.

Who will you vote for?

Who is the most influential surfer of all time?
( surveys)

Also we haven't forgotten the ladies, a poll for womens most influential surfers will follow at a later date.

Thursday, 21 August 2008

Surfing: An Olympic sport?

I've heard gossip for years about surfing becoming an Olympic sport but that was before decent wave pools, without which surfing as an Olympic event would be a non-starter. However the question as to surfing's inclusion in the games is now becoming more relevant. The piece below was was written by Fernando Aguerra, President of the International Surfing Association (ISA) and the video clip is of the Ocean Dome in Japan (not sure if longboarding could be included though):

"The IOC and contemporary sports

In the past few years the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has dramatically evolved in its view of the so-called extreme or contemporary sports and their place in the Olympic Movement.

The very positive effect of the inclusion of snowboarding in the Winter Games has also been a great wake up call for many. Another example of this positive evolution is the inclusion of BMX in the Beijing Games.

Presently diverse stakeholders around the world are friendly to the possibility of surfing’s inclusion in the Summer Games. This is in part because surfing has a well functioning and structured IOC-Recognized International Federation (the ISA) and National Federations, but most importantly it has to do with the realization that without “pruning the Olympic Games tree” by adding relevant new sports, and excluding no longer relevant sports, the tree itself will become less relevant and vital.

What are the hurdles for inclusion in the IOC GAMES?

The biggest obstacles facing new sports hoping to be included in the Olympic Games Program are the strict requirements for inclusion and the length of time the process requires. A new sport should start its campaign at least nine years before a particular Olympic Games, because the final line-up of sports is decided by the IOC seven years before any given Olympic Games.

Surfing’s chance for inclusion will most likely involve the development of wave parks with suitable manmade waves. Several such parks have been in operation for years, but recent technological improvements have raised the bar, and we now have an unprecedented ability for producing high-quality performance waves.

Consistent with current IOC rules, the decision on the Sports Program for the 2016 Games will be made in 2009 in Copenhagen. The IOC will also announce the host for those Games (finalists are Rio de Janeiro, Madrid, Tokyo and Chicago). The selection for the following Summer Games (2020) will be made in 2013.

The five sports on the “short list” for inclusion in the 2016 Games are rugby, karate, roller sports, racquetball, and golf. Currently there is only room for two additional sports for those Games. The IOC could also decide not to include any new sport at all for 2016."

And my view.... Surfing is being dragged into the mainstream whether we like it or not and inclusion in the Olympics will only accelerate that process not trigger it. Surfing as an Olympic sport wouldn't be a bad thing as it would only shine a positive light on our lifestyle. No doubt it would prompt more people to try surfing and perhaps increase the crowd factor but wave parks will eventually become the norm allowing millions of inland surfers to stay inland. I can see wave park surfing becoming an entity in its own right developing separately from ocean surfing.

Whatever happens, surfing an ocean wave will never change and no amount of wave pool experience or medals will ever replace getting up at dawn on a freezing winter morning, to catch the pulse that you know will show for only a few hours on the right tide, at the right spot before the wind picks up- just gliding on pure energy with a few good friends.

Monday, 18 August 2008

Laird Hamilton

One of the most influencial surfers alive...

Wednesday, 13 August 2008

Billabong’s Grant ‘Twiggy’ Baker rides the biggest wave ever in Cape Town

International Big wave surfing news:

Grant ‘Twiggy’ Baker rode what he says was the biggest wave he has ever ridden in Cape Town on Saturday when he and fellow Billabong team rider Greg Long towed each other into waves estimated to be over 70 foot (22 metres) in height.

The 35 year-old from Umhlanga, near Durban, and Long, 25, from San Clemente, California, started the day towing into waves at Dungeons, the notorious open ocean reef outside Hout Bay where Baker won the 10th anniversary edition of the Red Bull Big Wave Africa paddle-in event two weeks ago.

After three hours of epic rides and as the low tide approached the duo rode their PWC out to the indicator reef known a Tafelberg, a kilometre outside of Dungeons, where the huge waves usually just peak and crumble as the reef is eight metres below the surface.

However, the 16 second swell period and Southerly direction of the massive swell on Saturday, combined with the low tide and glassy conditions, was creating enormous waves that were breaking top to bottom in an awesome display of ocean power.

The waves were definitely the biggest I’ve ever seen in South Africa and possibly the biggest anywhere,” Baker said. “Greg towed me into one giant wave that was so big I was terrified and started hyper-ventilating.”

Later, when we saw the photos taken by Craig Kolesky with a large lens from Chapman’s Peak, we realised that those were possibly the biggest waves ever recorded, on a par with the rides we had a Cortes Bank in January which were measured at well over 70 feet.”

We will definitely be keeping our eye on Tafelberg for future sessions,” Baker said. “That wave can get a lot bigger"

Tuesday, 12 August 2008

The best and worst campsites in Britain- Surfers Paradise Croyde?

As surfers we have a tendency to travel around a lot in search of waves and more often than not we find ourselves staying under canvas on a camping site. Spending time outdoors close to a new surf spot can be great but if you choose the wrong place to stay it can spoil the experience. This unfortunately happened on my last trip a few days ago to Croyde in North Devon.

We decided to stay at "Surfers Paradise" campsite...obviously lured by the name and location close to the beach but the reality didn't live up to the promise. The site is little more than a field and the "facilities" consist of some temporary porta-cabins, which were very poor. The service at reception was awful and altogether unwelcoming and the security on site was non-existant. If the campsite's fees had reflected the standards then OK, but the fees were high and in line with larger sites with real facilities like showers, bars, etc. So the site was set up to take as much money as possible and give as little as possible in return, just exploiting the continuing UK surf boom. "Surfers Paradise" Croyde.....campers you have been warned!

On the flip side we usually stay at Lobb Fields camp site just down the road in Saunton. The facilities are simple but the owners are always welcoming and its a well maintained site, so we often recommend it.

So we'd like to hear of your experiences....can you recommend a great site to stay at or warn us of campsites from hell? Feel free to comment and share your thoughts

*image above is an example of a poor camping choice!

Thursday, 7 August 2008

Watch the Ripcurl boardmasters Newquay live

The Rip Curl Boardmasters witnessed some of the best waves of the year yesterday at Fistral Beach, Round 2 of the ASP World Qualifying Series (WQS) 5-Star coming to an end in fantastic five foot (1.5 meter) clean waves. Twenty-four heats were completed and all top seeded surfers started their 2008 Boardmasters campaign in what will be remembered as one of the greatest days of surfing in Europe.

You can watch it live (GMT) right here....

Monday, 4 August 2008

Pororaca: Bore surfing the longest wave

There are a number of surfable tidal bore waves in the world and we have mentioned a few in the past on this blog and they never fail to amaze. This is the latest footage from a surf trip to surf the Pororoca bore on the Amazon, one of the longest waves in the world and judging by this session one of the biggest and cleanest. On the video below these guys really scored. For the science of tidal bores check out the explanation below:

Tidal bores form on rivers and estuaries near a coast where there is a large tidal range and the incoming tide is confined to a narrow channel. They consist of a surge of water moving swiftly upstream headed by a wave or series of waves.

When a tidal bore forms in a river, the direction of flow of the water changes abruptly as the bore passes. Before it arrives, the water may be still or, more usually, a small freshwater current flows outward toward the sea. The tide comes in as a “wall of water” that passes up the river. Behind the bore, the current flows upriver. At the division between the moving water behind the bore and the still water in front, there is a wave, the water surface behind being higher than it is in front. This wave must travel more quickly than the water particles behind it, because, as the advancing water travels upriver, it collects the still water in front and sets it in motion. Upriver, the advancing tide will consist not of salt water from the sea but rather of fresh water that has passed farther down and been collected and returned in front of the incoming tide. It is therefore necessary to distinguish between the velocity of the advancing wave and that of the water particles just behind it.

* source of the Encyclopedia Brittanica.

Saturday, 2 August 2008

worse skate wipeout ever?

When skating on our little plastic skateboards in the seventies, to have achieved a couple of 360's or a handstand would have been the pinnacle of skill and style. Back then the moves and airs that pro-skaters pull these days was beyond our comprehension. This recent clip is of Danny Way on the mega ramp, showing just how far skating has come but also how the potential dangers have increased as boundries have been pushed....this one hurts!

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