20/07/2007 | by Mark Patterson
Well, what a total drain that was .… “The June 07 Lull” … A right bunny boiler she was, and the stuff of future lore. What tiddlers have lapped up, have been accompanied by mostly short period, only adding to the misery. Shapeless, souless stuff by the oceanful. Yesterday saw some relief with jAy et al getting a lil’ early morning shred. But that brief pulse of swell has passed through, and she’s mushy again. Sunday has good potential though.
The summer solstice has passed without ceremony, apart from the few remaining naked, cavorting pagans among you. The nights get shorter from now on. Even the notion sends a certain chill. Anyways, roll on summer and some new grind. All eyes seaward and chartward for a decent swell…
Some new stuff is brewing for sure. Sunday could find us in clean offshore happiness again, but Port might be small … go west.
‘Cast below as always – but heres a punt on Port East going off on Wednesday for the midweek chargers. Long term too, theres a chance of a meaty hit next weekend. Too early to be specific on that.
Watch the big tides this Sunday. Loads of water moving.
Some other things…
Surfism – Update
After some diffs with a double booking in the venue … its all systems go with the Surfism event. Were running it as a benefit for Letterkenny 17 year old Alan Doherty who is in America as we speak recovering from the primary surgery required to give him a chin. He is one of the few people ever known to be born withut a mandible. Full press release below. Detail:
Surfism for Alan Doherty
Sandinos, Thu 12th July, £3+
Acoustic: Our Krypton Son, Ronan Kearney
DJs: Mickma, jAy vs Kazoo
Surf visuals and more
Cheers to all who mailed back midweek – a general sense that the 12th wud be ok. We’re hoping it’ll still work in terms of loads of people having the day as a holiday up North, and the fact that we may have the town to ourselves. [Mick reckons we should all wear orange, sashes etc … but maybe not]. Plus, theres a better chance Alan himself will be home in time for the gig. Whatever the case, twud be great to see as many of you as poss at the event. Spread the word. The official site for Alans full story etc is:
Al Mennie – “Driven ” The Doc…
Great to hear the latest from Alastair this week. If anyone can claim the title of the Irish Laird, then Portrush’s finest is surely a contender. After all the rumours and chat about his dramatic bigwave rescue earlier this year at massive Aileens – and boy was it dramatic – Al mails to say hes about to launch the documentary which tells not just the story of that day, but also his life as a surfer. I hope to get a review up as soon as possible, maybe a giveway copy etc. Al:
” …. you may be interested in seeing the following clip, click the link. http://www.mrbproductions.co.uk/driven.htm It is a trailer for a documentary called ‘Driven’ which is based around my surfing career and teaming up with my tow partner to ride the biggest waves that come our way. It is due for release in July. It covers us surfing at a very young age right through to our latest big wave tow sessions in March. Regards Alastair”
It’s a good looking year for Irish based surf films and docs. Good luck to Big Al and all the others in their efforts.
Busy week up North for those campaigning for a new Envoronmental Protection Agency for N Ireland, (including maritime stuff). Were the only ones in the UK that don’t have one. Supporters of the campaign lined the mile up to Stormont on Thursday to call on the Assembly to create the new agency. It’s a a 9-strong coalition of environmental groups. Over 5000 people here wrote to their political parties pledging their support for an independent environmental protection agency. No clear ministerial position as yet.
Good Site – N Ire
This is just launched by the Countryside Access and Activities Network. Basically it’s a single-site access point for all the many outdoor activities that you can do here. Canoeing, Kiting, diving, microlites even. Plus surfing of course. Good looking site too. Keeperhandy. Link: www.outdoorni.com
Got some great news last week. The main site now generates about a quarter of a million hits a year, and all of that more or less by word of mouth. I reckon most people sign up to the batch because someone else put them onto it. Grand. The beeb now want to build on the success, and theres all sorts of chat about t-shirts, stickers, logo, and a formal advertising campaign. Good craic. It’s a good time to review the site. Priorities will be the review section and a new one I want to get up about you lot: short profiles up in terms of your pic, first waves, boards/quiver, travels etc. Needless to say, were all ears in terms of what, within reason, people would like added or changed. I reckon the batch and ‘cast are the main things that people hook into, but let us know. [We decided against an msg board a long time ago, because they can get so full of muppets who can get you into bother by saying random guff]. But, any other ideas??
Off the back of all that, Lou has got us a simpler URL for the main NI surf page. Change it if you have a second. New link: www.bbc.co.uk/ni/surfing
I hope to see Longfield’s finest, Clive “Burgers” Connolly in August for some California Dreamin’. Our man in sunny California continues to prosper, and posts a great site profiling the mighty “Wedge” at Newport. Click the vid links. Mostly booger action. V impressive, with some jah-droppers of wipeouts. Link:
Warm Water Classic
Bundoran Warm Water Classic will take place this weekend at Tullan Strand. Contest 10am on Saturday. The boards for the retro board comp will be provided and they all have their own story. At the start of each heat every surfer will draw a straw to see who gets first pick. The grommets are encouraged to take on the old boys. Great prizes will be on offer with an epoxy board for first. Contact Bundoran Surf Co (071 98 41968) or Surfworld (071 98 41223).
Stoked Folks …
~ Finger has been on it in the States:
“yesterday was incredible … i’ve surfed bigger waves there, but never better waves. 3 guys on shoulder to head high bowls all morning. just doing laps-paddle out, catch a wave in, paddle out, etc…….the horizon looked like a pair of corduroy pants! shoulders were straight up and down. We are truly blessed as surfers ….”
~ Wee note in from John McCarthy. The Lion of Clare has excelled at the recent Europeans in France:
“Super stoked, to get on the podium. Ireland finished 9th out of 16 teams. I was surfing for Ireland in the Senior event (over 28′s). The first Irish surfer to make it to the Senior final and one of only a handful of Irish surfers to get a medal from the europeans (I think it has been ten years since Ireland has won a medal at the Europeans Championships). It was pretty special to be wearing a competitors vest for Ireland on the finals day of the contest with the elite of european surfing. The portugese won the event and the Senior category. Blessed. Yihoo John.”
~ Kazoo too: “up at half 4 & outta the water at half 8…good way to start the working day!”
Remember the old Troggs site? loadsa pics etc?? Good to see it up and running again then, albeit with a new name. The official “Troggs.com” site remains active for Andys shops and commercial ventures, but this new site is now home to his massive back catalogue of pics, blog and soon to be a ‘cast etc. Keeper handy fersure at: www.surfingireland.com
Roxy Pro Tour
Ladies, step forward … The Roxy Pro team are on a UK wide tour, and enroute to Portrush at the end of July – Sunday 29th and Monday 30th. The deal for 25 quid is – meet the pro women, get surf tips, yoga, lunch, watch new Roxy movie “Shimmer” etc. All via Troggs. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org for all info and registration.
‘Cois Fharraige’ – September 7/8/9
Cois Fharraige is being marketed as ‘Irelands First Surf and Music Festival’ and will feature, among others, Fun Lovin’ Criminals, Ocean Colour Scene Kila and the Republic of Loose. Good lineup. Tickets went on sale today 2007 at 9am at www.ticketmaster.ie . It all happens in Kilkee, Co Clare in a 4,500 capacity tent. Activities will include an official surfing event at Doughmore, Doonbeg on the Saturday 8th September in association with the West Coast Surf Club. All sounds good, especially if the revered September Swells arrive on cue. .
Portstewart…. nice ….
Whitillyehear … The National Trust with HB ice cream invites people to a ‘day of fun for all the family’, 7 July at Portstewart Strand:
“Children can test their strength at the speed challenge, sculpt their favourite character out of sand, have their faces painted in a myriad of colours, enjoy the bouncy castle and challenge their powers of deduction along the length of our treasure trail and enjoy the sea and sand whilst indulging in your favourite HB ice cream.”
I would have thought over 30′s might be frowned upon, but Monty will prob still have a rattle at any free 99′s…
Following in the steps of our own Rory Liquid and Mark Leonard, ITV newsreader Backy Mantin has also taken a hit in the brine:
“The 25-year-old collided with another surfer in Cornwall on 7 June, bumping her head on the board. Mantin was treated in hospital but then collapsed a week later, and was taken to hospital for more tests. She has since been released. A spokeswoman for ITV said: “We expect Becky back in a few weeks when she has been given the all clear.”
Shes the blond one,with the short sorta spiky hair.
Other Ocean Based stuff
Friday 29th June, and after another unsettled week up North, its breezy and mild here in town. Webcams today all over show small, shapeless waves.
The forecast, and there’s some hope on the horizon, although this north west wind will ruin most of the waves today. It turns offshore tomorrow but the swell is shapeless again. Come Sunday though, and the wind stays light, east to north east, accompanied by a decent eye of swell. Donegal will have its share, although the Causeway might be too small. Late next week sees more good swell on the way, and a definite to the long lull of late.
On the BBC 5 day …. Sunny, rainy, warmer. Low tides, Lisahally today 2pm. Low tomorrow 2pm, and low again Sunday 3pm. Weekend tides are sizeable, above 2.5 metres in town, increasing.
My bet? Hold off till Sunday. Out West has perfect potential.
Sizeable surf is returning, so be safe in the water. The Magic Seaweed, Irish Surfer and Irish Surf Association websites have all the info you need to approach the Irish waters.