September sessions here in Cornwall are normally the best of the year, but this year the surf was pretty dire. But just when it seemed like it was going to be one of the worst autumns I can remember, October turned up with the goods.
The last three weeks has seen some epic sessions go down. From tow-in barrel-seeking sessions in giant waves at Fistral to shoulder-high peelers perfect for longboarding, there has been something for everyone. Many classic spots that lie dormant for much of the year have been working – they’re packed with the mandatory crowd, of course, but if you keep your eyes open, quiet sessions can be found.
After three weeks of great waves, usual transmission has resumed. Howling westerly gales are forecast for the next week, the balmy late-autumn temps are fading fast and the dark nights have drawn in. So it looks like it’s time to batten down the hatches for winter.
Embracing the changing seasons helps you bond with your surroundings. It’s not hard: winter comes with many bonuses… The opportunity to surf spots that don’t work the rest of the year; stormy days spent seeking out that elusive spot you always heard about, followed by a pint in front of an open fire; the lower crowd pressure and open space, on land as well as in the water; expanding your quiver to surf winter’s more powerful swells; long, dark nights that give you more time to work on projects and, when it all gets a bit much, plan trips to far-flung places in search of sunshine.