Tuesday, February 21, 2012


Waterfall repelling with Costa Canyoning www.costacanyoning.com

My usual last minute packing pre travel freak out is in full swing. 11pm and still no sign of sleep. I should have packed earlier today, but I went waterfall repelling instead. This involved slipping and sliding precariously down some insanely beautiful waterfalls while hanging from a rope.

I'm worried about making it through check in. I have attempted to disguise 3 boards as 2, and whether my luggage will be under 23kg a piece is highly debatable... worst case senario I will try and wear half my clothes. I'm headed to Cuba to surf, so this will most likely be my last internet connection for quite some time. I'm going feral again folks. Adios.

Fixing up an old surfboard for Cuba

Friday, February 17, 2012

Ghetto Haircuts

It cost me $5. We heard from a friend of a local friend’s friend that a lady in town was running the business from her house. Driving to the shadier part of town, we found her standing on her front porch, dogs barking around her feet. There were piles of black, fuzzy cut hair pooled on the floor and a few scattered plastic chairs stacked around the place. A young lady sat at a small wooden table, hair foils fermenting in place, hands outstretched with nails being painted.

Considering my rusty Spanish, explaining a preferred cut was not an option. A snip here, a cut there, flutters of blonde strands danced to the floor. Shorter and shorter, followed by the unfortunate realization – I think she’s giving me bangs.

But don’t judge a book by its cover. It turns out my $5 Central American haircut may just be the best I’ve ever had. 

Tuesday, February 14, 2012


I was so half asleep it took me a good 30 seconds to realise what was going on. It went like this:
Mmmm I'm groggy. Wooow everything is wobbly. Hang on my bed is moving. Hang on my ROOM is moving. Wait... earthquake! By the time I jumped out of bed and staggered out to the living room it was pretty well done. What a way to wake up!

The epicentre was just a few kilometers offshore from the town where I'm staying, Playa Dominical in the South Pacific coast of Costa Rica. It happened yesterday morning and measured in around a 6.0, but no damage was done. On a lighter note, here are some pics from the surf yesterday :)

Friday, February 10, 2012

Meet Vanina Walsh

I had a whole bunch of behind the scenes footage from my shoot with Roxy team rider Vanina Walsh, and was super excited to edit it all together. She's such a cutie and I really hope that shows through in this video. My good friend Mark also created and recorded the music for the film, giving it that personal touch. How a girl grows up in Arizona and manages to become a pro surfer is still beyond me!
You can find the video Meet Vanina Walsh on both my Vimeo and Youtube channels.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Breakfast Barrels

Yet another perfect morning here in Dominical, Costa Rica. Once again we're seeing beautiful offshore low tide barrels. Once again I am chickening out drinking coffee while waiting for the tide to fill in just a little bit more.  Check out the pics below

Monday, February 6, 2012

A Monday Surf Report

Dominical surf report.
Draining Costa Rican low tide barrels. Makeable? You tell me.
Board breaking potential = highly probably.
My prognosis? Coffee and wait for high tide.

Saturday, February 4, 2012


Note to self, don't take the red eye flight again. Also be wary, LAX airport lines are a nightmare. I spent the flight sandwiched between two elderly Costa Rican ladies. One spoke no English but rambled away to me in Spanish, while the other had smuggled in her own supply of small hotel style bottles of whiskey. They both proved to be great in flight entertainment.

The bus ride South made the plane seem comfortable. It was full, very squishy and for the first time in all my travels throughout Costa Rica, it was unfriendly. Two small children spent the entire four hour trip crawling over me, and after a while my heavy camera bag held tightly on my lap began to weigh a ton. 

The bus driver barely stopped to let me off. Everyone on the bus seemed rather irritated that we had to stop at all. I fell while trying to climb down the bus stairs, and landed flat on my ass on the side of the road. The driver angrily dumped my suitcase next to me and took off. While trying to collect myself I unfortunately stood too long on a big pile of fire ants. They climbed up my pants and all over my arms, leaving me covered in angry red welts. Thankfully I got picked up hitching into town by two lovely German guys. They bought me a beer while I waited for my friend to pick me up.

Here is a short clip of the view from a hill above the town where I'm staying. The view is insane, the surf is firing, the company is great, food is delicious and this country is absolutely stunning. If a long bus ride and a few fire ants is the worst that's happened, I've got no grounds for complaints. 

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Where are the Chicks?

The girls free surfing in Hawaii, 2011.

The women's contests in Hawaii have been an integral part of the WCT. Each year would see the top women in the world test their skills at breaks such as Sunset Beach and Haleiwa. 2010 even saw the women surf a heat (even if it was only one) at Pipeline during the Triple Crown, giving them a chance to prove themselves in some serious conditions.

However recently the entire Hawaiian leg of the Women's WCT has been canceled due to a "lack of sponsorship" support for the contests. At a time when the sport seemed to be gaining forward momentum, I find this strange. But for me the most surprising part of this whole situation is how quietly this all went down. No complaints, no media investigation, no protest from the female competitors themselves. Every time I try and inquire as to why, I get met with the same icy avoidance.

I was lucky enough to interview pro Aussie surfer Claire Bevilacqua earlier last year in my home town. She gave me some absolutely straight up answers which I look forward to sharing in full soon. Here is just a snippet of her take on the current female contests - and this was before the cancellation of the Hawaiian leg.

"There was no real good waves on tour last year for it to be the greatest surfing tour on earth. We really didn't get that good waves. I saw good waves, but we didn't get to surf them. There is no big barrels, there's no death defying reef breaks. The highest performance wave we had was Sunset and that wave was flat. I was a bit sick of how it was the same; surfing really really bad waves, the dregs of what the men wanted."