November 13, 2013 at 4:01 pm
7 and a half months since id been under those daunting mysterious cliffs of moher,
Ive been here for three months waiting for the day, and in between all these crazy storms the past weeks there was my window, a window to test myself out at Aliens again…
i woke up at 5am and just couldnt rest, i had to look at the sea, problem was that its dark till 7am now!
With time on my hands i did my shoulder warm ups, checked my boards,leashes,food for the day, and was ready by 6, just another hour till i could get up there and check her.
I knew it was big cause you could here it, still dark i could feel the energy out there, the anticipation was full on, i knew it was going to be one of those days.
It wasnt till i drove past the beach that i realised it was the same size as back in February when i got smashed!
This time i had no ski, no camera man,filmier or anyone in fact , apart from Patch one of my best mates.
first site over the cliffs was bombs like theses! 12ft plus thick mean mutant!
These are the days when its just you and mother nature in its elements, no ego out there man.
No scene, no crew, just me and Patch, and finally Tom Doidge having a look, all of us looking for the right entry into one of these beasts,
after taking my time to gather up my my energy, making sure i had enough oxygen in my blood after the mental paddle out, (very important to take a moment before taking off on a big wave, get some nice deep breaths in to regain composure and focus) i put my head down and dropped into a bomb, i was shitting myself to be honest, but committed all the same, i got a beauty bowl which barrelled over me until started to close out, i managed make it though the front before getting broken in two! the feelings were pure joy, emotional stoke! what a weight of my mind,soul, and all that thought about if i still wanted it, there was my answer.
Thanks to a cool local who happened to be walking up the cliffs that day, (Emmett Gallagher) i have some pics to go along with my memory’s of this epic day!
The shot above was my 3rd wave i think, as Emmett only caught my last few.
Im on my 7’2 JP here and she feels like a 6’0 on this bowl!
Patch and Tom didnt have the same mind set as me this day, so they didnt bag any, but thats bigwaves for you, the cliffs for you.
sometimes its your day and sometimes it isn’t , Tom ended the surf with a set on the head and a snapped leash, 30minutes of swimming until he made it back to land, good job hes strong,
and Patch saved his energy for the next swell i think, when he had another go out there the other day, getting him wave of the day, the winter so far, with a huge 10ft pit! respect to him.
Plan now is to train and stay ready for the days to come, will let you know…
November 2, 2013 at 9:41 am
This blogs about staying true to what you love,
with storm after storm hitting the atlantic, its easy to get carried away with the hype, i for one nearly did!
I get these emails from friends and sponsors, asking what my plans are for the coming storms, good luck messages start buzzing on my phone, pressure builds in yourself and you question what it is your looking for with this bigwave surfing, glory? fame? or are you going to keep it real and stay true?
If i take the glory road it may end in tears, it has in the past. i wont be fulfilled inside, knowing that deep down im doing it for the wrong reasons, but hey each to his own, and its taken me a long process to be able to pull away from my ego and make what choices are best for me.
Your probably thinking, what the hell am i talking about.
To put it straight up , i had a choice to go tow Nazare, go and tow Mullaghmore, or to go surf a secret spot which i knew would be a good 8 to 10ft paddle session.
Heres Fergal slipping into what looks like an easy enough wave, but let me tell you its far from it, making that drop is a task in itself, let alone with all that wind!
I dont tow anymore really, unless theres no option and i cant paddle. for that reason again you wont be seeing me or Fergal on the web with new videos from the last swells. We will do what we’ve always done, and that is to keep our footage in the bag until the hype dies down, and release it when the time is wright.
I have respect for all tow or paddle surfers of any kind, everybody’s doing it for there own reasons and i only speak from a personal perspective.
It felt good to be on my first big swell in 7months! i wasn’t exactly thinking that seconds later after this beast of a wave threw me into the reef, the wind got under my board and theres was no other option than to bail, good to get that out the way.
It took me 40mins just to get out the back, paddle from hell every time you got a wave, but hey thats paddle surfing in heavy waves for you, alot of effort with alot of reward.
Like i said at the before, i nearly got sucked into the tow hype, calling up Fergal and talking about towing Mully or Nazare. But after he was so committed to paddling this one spot, it backed up my gut feeling of staying away from the towing again this swell. I wouldnt want to tow with anybody else in those conditions anyways.
Now there are going to be times when my ego will creep back in, it inevitable, it tell’s me to prove myself on these tow days, test myself again in the biggest waves storms of the year, make a name for myself. I’m for sure not in full control of my destiny, but as of late im staying true to what i believe in, and thats paddle surfing.
Having towed Mully a handful of times on these crazy huge swells, ripping my hamstring, nearly breaking my back and breaking my foot in the process, Ive had the biggest barrel of my life towing out there. But it’s time to try a new challenge, and that takes training and patience, to paddle a 20fter out there. It’s going to have to be just the right chart for that to happen, im here in Ireland until that perfect swell comes.
On a lighter note, perseverance paying of on this nug, id been paddling against a rip for what felt like a lifetime. the feeling you get paddling is a whole other buzz for me compared with engine power and a rope.
I havent felt that feeling in a long time, not turning and going on this one, all day there was plenty of that in fact, scary stuff.
Lastly i just want to make the point that this blog is purely personal, each to there own and all that, theres no right and wrong in my opinion of others, just of myself.