Issue 221


Surfing in winter used to be a lonely pastime for the brave, foolish and wise. Brave to
take on the stormy British waves that had dropped to icy temperatures. Foolish in the
eyes of everyone else who couldn’t understand how entering the sea at that time of year was
enjoyable. And wise because they knew that by enduring ice cream headaches they could surf the
best conditions of the year by themselves.

These days, you no longer need to be brave, foolish or wise to surf through winter, you just need a decent wetsuit and internet connection to tell you when to go. lt means that those freezing solo sessions that warmed the soul through winter are getting harder and harder to score. But is that such a bad thing? Over time, the joy of turning up at a break and having it to yourself can become tinged with a hint of ‘where is everyone?‘ ls there some ridiculously strong rip that you can’t see? ls this a big lull between the huge close-out sets? ls everywhere else better? Don’t get me wrong, surfing by yourself is a magical experience and winter is still your best chance in the year to find it. Even in these crowded times, away from the main breaks and during the week, co d waves still break by themselves. But sharing waves can be an equally magical experience; it’s just that for us, it tends to happen more often than not.

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