This is the story of an epic coastal journey from North Germany down to Morocco in an old Fiat Ducato. We documented the trip, the places we saw and the people we met. We called this Gen Süden www.gensueden.com. A project that focuses on being on the road with a van and a surfboard and all the great things that come with it.

Quietly considered and eloquent, you might know of Nathan Oldfield through his films 'Lines From A Poem' and 'Seaworthy'. Surf Screen's Christiaan Bailey popped him a few duly thoughtful questions about creative motivations and the surf film industry. Photos: Nathan Oldfield

When the ‘Apocalypse Now’ film crew packed up and left the Philippine coastal town of Baler, they left one important item behind – a surfboard. More than 30 years on and this quiet backwater is home to a stoked crew of welcoming locals. Words: Mark Sankey Photos: Alexa Poppe

Joe Curren is the surfing equivalent of old growth, his style in the water and behind a lens is deeply rooted, contemplative and quietly powerful. Jair Bortoleto caught up with Joe to talk about family, travel, and shooting analogue in the digital age. Words: Jair Bortoleto Photos: Joe Curren

The alaia has become something of a shining star in recent years. Mark Sankey shares a photo essay of Cornish alaia riders. Photos: Lionel Duffau, taken at Crantock and Bundoran.

Tucked away at the top of a hill near Gwenver beach in Cornwall, Skewjacks was the definitive 1970s surf camp. Drift took four of its founding fathers - Dicky, Harvey, Jamo and Mickey - to the pub and reminisced about good times gone by. Words: Jamie Bott Credit & thanks to Graham Shephard & Mel Sedgwick

Bing Copeland was a pioneer of the modern surf industry. In his excellent new retrospective, ‘Bing Surfboards – Fifty Years of Craftsmanship and Innovation’, Paul Holmes discovered what makes Bing tick. Words: Bing Copeland & Paul Holmes Photos: Courtesy of Bing Copeland

In Florianopolis - Brazil's surf capital - during prime swell season, an incomplete line-up gets Clare Howdle thinking... (Photos 2, 3, 4&8: André Côrtes; photos 1&7: Zander Grinfeld, www.venncreative.co.uk)

Flitting between awesome waves at Aileens and Nelscott Reef is all in a week's work for Ireland's big-wave master Al Mennie. Words: Al Mennie Photos: Al Mennie, Gary McCall, Larry Jansky, Richard Hallman

A road trip around the Scottish coastline reveals all of the anticipated joys along with a few unexpected pleasures. Words and Photos: Jonathan Barattini

A tale of surfing reefs in South Africa, but not knowing what you get yourself into. Drift contributor Tim Conibear points a finger at localism and finds three more pointing right back. Photos: Mike Reich


Tranquilo


October 23, 2012 | Words By:

I recently met a sports journalist from Montana, Mike, while on my last Nicaraguan adventure. I felt extremely proud because he already knew of my blog! Being new to this story-telling, movie-making and photography-taking world, I jumped on the occasion to ask him for the magic ingredients to a good story.


One of his many valuable tips was to describe what I see, smell or feel. I explained how I found it hard to do this because almost every place I surf at is pretty special, but I don’t want to sound as though I am bragging about a different surf paradise on a weekly basis! I don’t think the lovely people who read my stories would really enjoy that and the stories themselves would lose some of their impact.

The place where I met Mike made it even harder because I experienced something there that I didn’t really think existed. Well, I knew it would have been around some years ago, when surfing was as soulful as you see it in Endless Summer, but maybe not now, not since online forums, guides, and forecasts often contribute to making great waves as crowded as a Guatemalan chicken bus! It is one of those places that is not talked about, by natural choice from whoever finds it because they feel a sense of responsibility to keep it the magic, uncrowded barrel-fest that it is…

I felt good there, and never intimated by the few very good lads who would encourage me to pull into the best barrels I’ve had…the only ones really! The surroundings also contributed to this sense of comfort: lush grass, horses, fresh water from the well, and coconuts in abundance. Seeing the same few people every morning, and being happy to have a chat, waiting for the sets to roll in was also unique. I usually hope to be on my own when I get in the water at 5:30am – not there. It was that good that it would have been a shame not to share it… everywhere you look was barreling, and most of them empty.

If there is one thing that you can be sure of with traveling, it’s that there seems to be some kind of a pleasant surprise pretty much everyday; a gift from another traveler, a huge electric storm, a great hostel with an eccentric owner, a glassy morning surf, or a local prepared to show you a good time and doesn’t mind that you understand less than half of what he says… I love my Melbourne life, but things are a bit more predictable over there!

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0 Comments


  1. That last week in Nicaragua was the last time we got proper waves… We need some swell!

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  2. We got a little here today!! had a fun surf at El Zonte!

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  3. Mike Harrelson says:

    Nice B&W photo. Mas olas por mi amigo, Ben.

    3


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