Back on the horse

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November 22, 2014 at 9:54 am

Since that beating a few weeks back, we’ve had some serious swell around!

The picture below is a throwback to a few years ago. But i felt the need to include it to this post, to add feeling.  Only Fergal and i out that day with Mickey Smith shooting in the channel,  things felt very similar with Danny D last week.

Its wild to be in 12ft waves with nobody around, brings out the depths of your love for it!   Like I always say, i wonder how many guys would be in these big waves with no cameras or scene. Something for all of us to question in ourselves. For me i can’t imagine my life without it!!!

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Here I’m caught on the inside,  the price you pay if your trying to push yourself to the next level.

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You take a 15ft slabbing wave on the head and you’ve got to dig deep to paddle back out,  your waiting out the back asking yourself if you should get out,  but thats were you flip it into positive thoughts, like ( I’m going to pick a perfect one and make it!)   (I’m not getting out till i get a bomb!)   (this is my time, I got this)   Thats what runs through my mind.   Then boom you pull the trigger and go!

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Last week had some windows of pure joy at Alieens!  Was nice to be relaxed out there for a change.

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No swell is complete without a few left slabs to go with it! Photo Mickey Smith

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All in all an epic week here in Ireland!!!

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Pleasure and pain

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November 12, 2014 at 12:26 pm

Its a bloody huge yesterday!!!  20ft thick mean cliffs, scary scary stuff.

With only four of us willing to paddle out and with no ski or cameras,  the mood was chilling.

Fear all around…

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above I check the surf solo, its a different ball game with no hype scene or cameras around…really testes your guts, love and desire to surf these types of waves.   You ask yourself a lot of questions alone and afraid.

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My warm up wave above. Minutes before the biggest thickest wave of my life land square on my head!!!

so im paddling back out to the line up,  and i thought bugger this,  I’m going to paddle an 18fter!!!

so i sat wide on the shoulder waiting for the really big ones,  problem was i only had my 7’2 Harty. Not big enough to paddle these beasts. But i worked away, avoiding some freaky situations,  so nearly being cleaned up by monster sets.

Finally i swapped boards with my only other buddy in the water, so i had an 8’1 now.   This is where it went bad.   I paddled for the first wave of the set but could catch. Turning round i saw the biggest lumps of water since Mavericks!  but thicker than 20ft mavericks.  I dived deep making the second wave of the set, then swam and made the 3rd!   I’m ok!!  or so i thought.  Looking round i saw i was in the shallowest part of the reef,  and there was one more 15ft bomb coming, my heart sank,  i knew i was done for.   I made the quick call to paddle to shore and deeper into the impact zone,, instinct kicked in.   Was the right call in the end.   But that didn’t stop the wave detonating right in front of me!  i took one last breath,  and even though i had my flotation vest on i just knew it was going to be a long hold down.   What followed was the most intense rage dolling of my life,  contorting every which way i held my shoulders tight to my body,  wasting energy and air,  but saving any dislocations!   i sufficed after 20seconds or so,  who knows, felt longer.  Then the next hit me for another 15second beating,  i had nothing left, just held my board waiting for the next one to hit me.  Turning round briefly i saw massive bolders all around, i was in the dry danger zone, water moving everywhere!!    i had to pull out everything just to paddle out of there. finally i was out the back again, time to catch me breath.  I thought to myself, i got to get another wave,  if i don’t ill be negative and scared next time I’m out here. So i waited and waited and i got a after front he boil. Back to dry land for me!!!

Today i got a headache and whiplash, but I’m in one piece!    I’m thankful for the experience and looking to get back out there this week!!!

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All photos by (emmett@eircom.net)