Monday, September 25, 2006

Surf sources

For those who are interested in surfing, there are some great sites online which will tell you whether the waves are going to be any good before making the trek to the coast. Two of the best of these are Magic Seaweed and A1 Surf. For North Devon, I particularly like Croyde Surf Cam and Surf Station and there's a good collection of surfcams at Eyeball Surfcheck. Also, Sunset Surfers has a beautiful collection of surf photographs. For a great collection of online surf articles see Alex Wade's blog, Surf Nation, which can be found at The Times Online. For surfing shops and schools, see in particular Tiki Surf and Surf GSD.

As for guides to surf spots, the best starting point is probably the Footprint Series for Britain, Europe and the world. The Stormrider Guides to Europe and the world are also very useful. There are other guides to specific countries such as Fernhurst's Surfing UK by Wayne Alderson and Oceansurf's Portugal. As for older guides, there is Modern Surfing Around the World by John Severson from 1964 and Carl Thomson's Surfing in Great Britain from 1972. If you're just starting out, Doug Werner has written two very good books to help you along entitled Surfer's Start-up and Longboarder's Start-up. An excellent book on waves and weather is called Surf Science by Tony Butt and Paul Russell.

If you're in search of surfing literature then the best known surf novels of recent years are by Kenn Nunn and include Dogs of Winter and Tapping the Source, the latter being a kind of Heart of Darkness for surfing. A great travel book on surfing is called Riding the Magic Carpet by Tom Anderson (who recently knocked me out of a surf comp in North Devon) and tells the tale of a guy from Wales who dreams of surfing Jeffrey's Bay in South Africa. It's a cross between Moby Dick and Fever Pitch and is a really good read for surfers and non-surfers alike. As well as his blog mentioned above, Alex Wade is also writing a book about surfing in Britain entitled Surf Nation which promises to be a great read. Classic surf movies include Big Wednesday, Endless Summer and Riding Giants. A very good recent edition is Flow, the story of Al Merrick and Channel Islands Surfboards.

No comments: