May 27, 2015 at 6:15 pm
I kept telling myself leading upto the swell, that it wasn’t going to be scary, that i could handle it. But who was i trying to kid! Every weather chart said it was the biggest in history.
I left it till the last second to book my flights, hoping it would turn shit, Really i did. Sounds strange, but i wasn’t ready, i was sick with a fever and one hell of a cold. But there goes that voice again, saying you can’t miss out on this one! sometimes i wish i didn’t have it! So maxing out my credit cards again,traveling solo, and feeling very sorry for myself! i packed light and hit the road.
To be honest, if it wasn’t for ‘The Hubbox’ id be in dept, they ended up getting my flights, the legends! id have gone regardless, no matter the consequences, but who wants to come back with that hanging over your head, funny how it worked out again.
I got there the night before what would turn out to be the biggest ever waves recorded at Puerto Escondido. I was scared, it was 30 to 40feet and the swell wasn’t even close to peaking!!!
Long story short, my bags didn’t arrive, i had no kit, no board, nada! so borrowing a horrible snapped 10’0 i attempted to paddle out in the craziest conditions id ever seen. Why because i knew that there was a chance to paddle the biggest wave ever, or at least if i caught a small one, it would be my biggest. The shore break was horrendous, rivers of water going in all directions. Anybody who’s surfed Puerto, even at 6feet, knows how many rip currents and how the heavy the wave can be. Imagine at 80feet faces!!! thats how mad it was!!!
Taking me 1hour to get out the back, paddling from the harbour with Mark Healy, I sat for 10minutes to collect myself, i thought, this is the day i go on the bomb! but nature had other ideas… the biggest set of the day approached, and i held position, next to Mark Healy, Healy swung and screemed himself into this monster wave. It was just nuts. The wave after was a solid 10feet bigger, and just scrapping over it, i saw there was a mountain rolling in outside. It looked slow motion it was that big, i remember thinking it wouldn’t break, it just kept standing up, then oh fuck…its going to land square in front of me!!! I stood on my 10’0 jumped and dived deep breaststoking for what felt like ages. the whitwater started to throw me around, and i panicked a little. Then as if nature had tought me my lesson, it spat me out the back into flat water. My leash had snapped along with my board. I just swam and swam, out into the deep sea, diving under three more waves on the way. For the first time i look up to see my brother Derek Dunfee offer his board to take a rest. For a minute i got some breaths, hoping there wouldn’t be another set, a ski arrived and took me to land 10mins later. Humbling lession if ever there was! forever thankful to be in one piece!!!
Next thing I’m on the beach congratulating Healy on one of the biggest waves ever paddled, and somehow i want to give it another crack. Nobody’s got a board i can borrow, and i finally give in once my adrenaline wears of.
Next day was 20 to 30ffet, which is around 50feet faces. I waited and waited, paddled and paddled. 2hours I’m patiently waiting for my wave. I have in mind a particular wave, a messed up heavy deep right, the ones which look scary, i want that wave. Finally I’m in persition for this beast, and two dudes pop up on my inside, they half heartedly paddle, and i hasitate for just a split second, then pull the trigger and go! but its to late, I’m not bona make it, I’m flying!!!!
A horrendous beating follows, snapping my favourite board, which I’ve had for 5years!!! that night I’m tragic, adrenalin comdown! with nothing to show! A few days pass and some fun rides were had, but not the one i was looking for. Then as if fate had a plan, another swell pops up on the charts, heading for Puerto, i decide to stay, to give it another go.
Feeeling acclimatised and with my boards and safety vest, i felt confident. The whole week from there is a dream, so many beautiful rides i was blessed with. Its just all came together.
Photo Daniel Nava
Photo Mariana Marenelmar
Its been a week now since the craziness, and I’m finally getting my flow back home in Cornwall, working, surfing, family, and a bunch of chill time.
So until a main sponsor picks me up, thats how it is, Cornish summer life.
am i complaining…hell no! well until i see another swell…
Thankful beyond words-
April 22, 2015 at 8:04 am
Just as i start to settle into a flow, a rhythm, of normal daily life here in Cornwall. I bump into an old friend, who offers to send me on any swell i wish!!! Thanks to The Hub St,Ives, and the Hubox, I could do what i love the most, chase crazy waves!!!
So with a swell approaching Ireland the next day, i hit the road once again.
My hero and friend Shane Dorian had been hitting me up all winter for Irish charts, waiting for a perfect swell to come.
I gave him the green light, and was stoked when the waves delivered!!! Alieens was 10feet and as perfect as you could imagine.
Above a few images by Mickey Smith, moments of pure nature.
In just two days we scored some of the best conditions I’ve witnessed.
To surf my local waves, alongside Dorian was a dream beyond words.
Until next swell…