Lifeguard Anthony "Harries" Carroll out for an early


Guess what? It’s still blowing filthy onshore. North Bondi has some protection from the East nemesis winds, and a few little surfable(ish) waves. Nothing special though. Exposed beaches are 4-6 foot…just messy as hell.

The forecast says tomorrow afternoon the wind will kick around to the NE. Finally some clean waves will be on offer and that twitch will disappear.

I reckon the next 4 days will make up for the poor surf of the past 4 days. Cheer up.

Sydney’s 1st $900,000 artificial reef

NSW Government announced that construction of its first offshore artificial reef will begin soon. Only $900,000 is being spent on the reef and is being erected 1.2 kms off the Gap at Vaucluse. The reef is expected to greatly improve recreational fishing opportunities off Sydney. Damn those Fishos are smart…this is the 1st of 3 fishing reefs. So errrm, the obvious question is – how about an artificial reef at Bondi? The swell magnet will pump with something to break on…a 300 metre right off The Boot? Interested to hear everyone’s thoughts. (comment below)

A d i o s, ::u g i o s

A nue day

Pama, flying fish

Walk the dog.

The brothers

Walk to Bronte

35 thoughts on “Onshaw

  1. Bondi couln’t handle anymore people in the water. It would be worse than Snapper. Nothing more frustrating than getting a good wave and having to spend most of it dodging people.

  2. Hey Jack, more frustrating that surfing close outs? As soon as we get waves above 3 foot the bay shuts down…rarely do we get to surfing anything big that unwinds well. Interesting that the fisherman get 3 reefs…(nearly a million dollars each). Just 1 will do us fine…ok, even just a small one, to make it break out the back a little…seeya, uge

  3. The right design could produce great surf and make for a safer beach by protecting the beach from the worst of the swell. Then we don’t need professional life guards and the reef has paid for itself.

  4. successful artificial reef technology still does not exist for surf. have seen in recent times first hand all the so-proclaimed successful reefs and they are rubbish , especailly considering the cost involved. They destabilise the existing environment.

  5. Right on Uge. I’ve always looked at the boot and thought it’d be perfect to supplement to make a good right hander. You could even do two with one right at the tip, and another in front of icebergs. If you were really adventurous you could do a left/right peak up the rocks around from Ben Buckler too. Not many backpackers come to Bondi to fish but heaps do to surf (sort of). Why not make Bondi into an actual surfin gdestination rather than a pretend one? How cool would that be?

  6. Perhaps the nutritional sports energy drink RedBull could sponsor an artificial reef? Something nice and inconspicuos.

  7. 1) Artificial reef in Opunake, Taranaki NZ designed ASR – ‘disaster, blown budget many times over and still not complete after nearly 5 years. 2) Artificial reef in Mount Manganui, NZ designed by ASR – complete failure, even destroyed an existing break. Designer blames contractors, contractors blame designer. One thing for sure – they won’t try to build another one in NZ anytime soon. Sorry fellas there is no magic artificial surf break solution. Best to let ’em build an artificial fishing reef and hope something surfable comes out of it.

  8. think an artificial reef is an awesome idea for Bondi.. be great to have some cleaner lines when is gets bigger..

  9. Joe, I think the only reason artificial reef technology is currently unsuccessful is because it its a fairly new concept. If they gave up on computers based on the the performance of the Commodore 64, where would we be now…

    What is more worrying is that there is no mention here of the global decline in fisheries and I hope the introduction of these reefs is not just motivated by fishing but rather an attempt to counter the damage we are doing to the World’s fisheries.

    Sorry Uge, a tangent – i’m all for an artificial reef.

  10. The fishing reefs are being paid for by the Recreational Fishing Trust which is in turn funded by the NSW Rec Fishing licence fee, I think there might be a bit of an uproar if a licence fee was proposed for surfing, then again, rec fishers hated the idea at first too until they saw all the things that the licence fee was paying for to improve their sport.

    So how about it – who would be willing to pay $30 a year for a surfing licence and what projects would you like to see funded with the cash raised????

  11. Well the artificial reef @ Cables in perth WA. Aint bad, i know it may not have lived up to the (rather high) expectations of it’s creators/designers, but overall it has been an improvement on what existed there beforehand.

  12. Hi Joe,
    I am invoved in the study of artificial reefs, and hard stabilisation techniques and although your opinion looks pretty blunt and opinionated, I agree with you. Pity the city beaches are so close to the urban landscape ..the banks at bondi would have been much better (maybe)!

  13. Suggesting Bondi would not need professional life guards because of an artificial reef is just ridiculous.
    A mass volume of water entering a bay must exit some where (i.e. a Rip). Joe you are a goose…

  14. Insane to spend $1m (if this is true) on recreational fishing. Thought there were enough rocks out there to fish from. Seems like Sydney has too much money to spend?! Why not invest in public transport improvements ..haha…

  15. Love the idea of a 300m right in Bondi but as Joe said, its all too easy to destabilise the existing environment. Have a look at the erosion at Noosa main beach since they put in the rock wall at the river mouth – they now have a huge pump running 24/7 just to keep sand on the beach. Who knows what damage an artifical reef could do to Bondi?

  16. Hi Uge

    You need to remember that the artificial reefs are being paid for by fishing license fees. We poor (NSW) fishermen have been asked to cough up $75 a year for the privilige of fishing in the ocean for the past ten years or so, and finally (a tiny portion of) that money is being re-invested for our benefit.

    Obviously no-one wants to see surfing licenses introduced, but without an obvious revenue stream from surfing there is little incentive for government to invest in the sport. If we want artificial reefs then we’re going to have to pay for them ourselves.

    And, as a final comment, if we’re going to build a reef it should be a left. We goofies deserve it – come on, you know it’s true.

    1. Hi Simon,

      Left – ha! funny.
      I have recently learned about the funding and licensing…
      Would I pay to surf a 300 right? I would. I dump truckloads of cash chasing waves around the globe…
      I would but can understand otherws wouldn’t…


  17. Don’t start messing about with water flow… seems to always have a negative impact down the line. Take what you got, that’s surfing, if you don’t like it… don’t surf at Bondi.

  18. Don’t get sucked in to the idea of perfect wave peeling down an artificial reef – I’ve just moved from Mt Maunganiu NZ where the local council blew a million bucks on an artificial reef and it was a total disaster – Despite all the promises it didn’t product one rideable wave. Artificial will never be as good as the real thing!

  19. My friends and I talk about this a lot. The fact that the whole east coast is FULL of amazing beaches with no workeable surf for half the year due to no solid sandbanks is just irritating. I vote a small wreck sunk or artificial reef built off all these open beaches, it would provide more surf spots, spread the surfers out and give everyone the chance at a good wave, not just those in the dog fight at Snapper or any of the ripping point breaks.

    Better than dumping these old wrecks on land somewhere.

  20. Artificial reef at Coogee…..they need something….anything…a few extra from Bondi to Coogee would’nt harm anyone….

  21. Pama is a merman, MER-MAN!

    As for a reef, sounds great – if it worked. Given the potential issues you would want to do some studies to make sure that it works and wont produce a series of undesirable outcomes…

  22. Messing up with nature is 100% guaranteed to bite you back in the bum down the line.

    There are hundreds of examples creating mayhem around the planet as we speak, whether it is rivers rerouted from their natural path, dams, bridges etc.

  23. I’ve got a mate planning to make a wave in Lake Burely Griffin in Canberra. It would be sweeeeeeeeeeeeeet, and cooooooollllllld. But so are slurpies, and people chown on them like a glove.

  24. Has everyone forgotten that insane footage of the artificial reef in India last year?


    Anyhow I don’t know how an aritificial reef can damage or interfere with nature, its not like we would be filling in anything or taking anything away, waves will still come in like they always do, they’ll just peel nicely across like a proper surf wave should rather then dumping in a close out.

    Uge is right, anything over 3ft in bondi never works, something would be better then nothing.

  25. Why don’t we setup a fund for an artificial reef at bondi for 300 meter lefts and rights… massive channel in middle of bondi will form… and we all get some killer surf at Bondi?

  26. They should link Mackenzie point, Mackenzies, tama, and then all the way into Bronte shorey for an epic left.


  27. Like a billion other people need another reason to come to Bondi.

    Go surf one of the uncrowded, insane reef breaks a few hours away… $20 in petrol!

  28. Don’t Build an artifical reef at Bondi.. Our one in Mt Maunganui NZ is more of a hazard than anything, creating rips etc and.. They had a national comp there and the reef was in the comp zone, no one used it.

  29. I think artificial reefs can work.
    The one at Cables WA is an example:
    -I admit they definitely got the location wrong as Cables doesn’t pick up anywhere near enough swell to warrant the money they spent on it
    -BUT, when it does break (on those rare handful of days a year), it is a quality reef break with a very challenging steep take off and a proper barrel section – definitely a good wave.

    So I guess they got the reef design aspect of it right, but not the location. Maybe somewhere like Bondi which picks up a lot of swell would be a good choice……………

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