Phils Ramblings : Tandom Surfing with the Young Crew

After my knee op I decided to get a new 12’x 26” x 4¼” mal so I could take Corey 4 and Reilly 3 out to catch a few waves at Crunchies and practise my paddling at the same time. Having two 20 kg little guys on the front makes it pretty difficult to keep it all together so we put life jackets on them, just in case we lost one of them. The Harrison’s are still setting the pace with Pipa 6 surfing by her self on a 6’2” Stubby, as well as joining Mark or Melissa on the long board, Marlin 3 just seems to love getting cleaned up in the shore break on his body board as well as catching a ride out the back with Mark or Melissa.  Ben Pitts is into it as well with Somer 6 and Zane 3, everybody just seems to love it.

It’s the middle of May and we’re at the end of one of the hottest and driest summers on record, the water temperature has only just dropped under 18 C, which is the best thing ever for the kids. Because they don’t paddle it makes them extremely vulnerable to the cold. The ones that are left are all wearing two wetsuits which makes a huge difference, you can feel the heat when you peel off the outer suit, but we still only last an hour or so. We ditched Reilly a couple of weeks ago and I’ve finally had room to stand up, without Reilly’s help Corey now stands up on every wave and he’s swapped his stance to a natural footer. Matt said he imitates people all the time, young kids seem to do it so easy, both Matt and Simon when they were first starting used to alternate every surf until I told to them to be goofy footers, everything else they do as naturals.

Last weekend we surfed Crunchies Friday afternoon after kinda the waves were perfect 1-2ft, we’d catch the white water out the back, trim across the inside section, cut back and ride the swell way past the boat ramp. Saturday was Corey’s brain washing day at the footy with his other grandpa. Sunday the swell was pretty big so I decided to get him out early before the crowd. My biggest fear is getting run over and getting tangled up with somebody else who is more out of control than we are, so we always paddle out wide and then make a mad dash to get inside everybody. We caught maybe 15 waves and fell off 3 times on the inside section which was lumpy and pretty difficult to ride. Corey was upset, but each time I’d get him back on the board as quick as I could and he quickly got over it. After a hot shower we wrapped up in a blanket in front of the fire and watched the Hawks replay.

Two hours later Harry was on the phone wondering where we were, Trealors was going off! I asked Corey if he wanted to go surfing and to my amazement said yes, luckily we had Reilly’s dry wetsuit. When we got there Melissa was pushing Pipa onto perfect little waves peeling right off the point to half way along the beach. Corey and I spent the next hour catching wave after wave from right over inside racing right along the reef. Matt turned up and took some pics just as we got our best wave, we had made it into the shore break which seemed to peel along for ever finally just before we were going to get smashed I managed to get off the wave. Corey and I were stoked every one on the beach were cheering like we’d just won a major title, but as I looked across Melissa, Marlin and Pipa were all standing up coming through the same section it got steeper and meaner and just as we thought they were goners they jump over the back of the wave leaving the board to take a pounding into the sand. We had another couple of waves and then went in, everyone was still on an incredible high, this had been something really special. It was probably the best I’d ever seen Trealors break, it was sunny with a lite offshore and we were with friends who love surfing as much as we do.

We’ve learn’t a lot over the summer, the most important thing is to make sure everyone is having fun, even if it’s just in flat water get them used to standing up while your paddling them along, then get them to jump off. Next summer or as soon the water gets back to 20c we’ll be joined by James 21 months and Indy 18 months, so it looks like we’ll have to spend a lot more time at the beach. The pictures show the progression we’ve made over the summer, Melissa has also given us some of their pictures as well.

See you in the surf


Here is a couple of short videos of the Harrisons in action