EOFY

Today it’s all about surfing as the waves are pretty good (but the light not so good).
This week’s south swell had dissipated and a new, clean, fresh ENE swell arrived switching on joints like The Bra.
It’s around head high on sets, predominantly chest high. Winds are offshore, so it’s lining up nicely.
My guess is that it will stay like this for today and part of tomorrow, fade on Sunday until a new swell hits Tuesday, kinda big too (over head high).
Today is the last day of financial year, maybe you need some artwork for the office? See you in the Aquabumps Gallery today 10-6. 151 Curlewis Street Bondi Beach
Enough ramble :: uge

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Spruce

Sorry about the late transmission. No… I haven’t been surfing all morning, even if the waves are the best they’ve been all week long.
Finally the winds have swung offshore and the swells are lining up. Bondi at sunrise was very dark with thick cloud cover and a handful of dudes surfing mostly closeouts mixed in with the odd barrel. I saw some nice sand formations down south end. My theory is that every time we put something on the beach, a Olympic Volley Ball Stadium or Ice skating rink – we get good sand banks out the back. You with me on that?
Bronte also looked fun this morning, some waves overhead high.
Seeya :: uge

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24 karat

It all kicked off today with a gold-plated morning around 7:10am. The clouds broke open for a brief moment and the bay was flooded with 24 karat rays. Quite the spectacle. This time of year the light is clean, crisp and gold – my favourite. The sun rises over the Ben Buckler when in its winter position – great side on light and golden shorelines.
As predicted the winds backed off but it’s still onshore. It’s overhead high, sometimes head and a half. The waves looked junkie, agitated from the recent storm. Most of the waves I saw this morning closed out as Bondi can’t even handle this size. Tomorrow a NE wind will clean it up in the afternoon…surf then.
Ciao :: uge

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Damp

It’s amazing what a difference 24 hours can make. Right now it’s raining and the beach is completely empty. The onshore winds are smashing anything resembling a wave and everyone is off to work.
This same SE onshore wind will create swell for the tail end of the week. So be patient, wait for it to die back. Tomorrow it backs off to 7 knots SSE (surfable at Bondi) but Thursday looks to have an offshore early (W).
Until the surf conditions line up, you gotta watch this, or maybe book your little Mentawai Junket for 2013 or I noticed they hot mixed Bondi Road hill last night, perfectly smooth for the skatey.
I couldn’t get enough passable photos on this rainy day, so here is some from yesterday and Indo last week.
Out :: uge

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Cryogenics

Over the past two weeks, on my tropical sabbatical, I’ve haven’t worn much more than a pair of boardies. I’m back in Bondi now and this morning had to layer up before venturing out of the house… IT IS FREEZING! It’s only 9 degrees as I write this now. Gotta be snow in ‘dem mountains.
The surf is dribbling infrequently knee to a short man’s waist line. Good for the loggers. I saw a guy paddle out at 6:30am in boardies. Now that is keen. He deserves a medal.
Today is the smallest day of the week. From tomorrow onwards there should be swell and fun. The biggest day will be Wednesday with double head high waves. Thursday looking good too! Get all your work out of the way today enabling you for some free time later when the swell arrives.
Adios :: oogie

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Final Voyage

We spent 12 days at sea surfing 12 different surf breaks amongst 3 overlapping swells in the Mentawais. We had 7 surfers on board the 47-foot Tengirri catching on average 40-50 waves each per day, sometimes more. Most days we’d surf 3 times on waves no smaller than 3 foot and no bigger than 8 foot. Needless to say, we had a pretty amazing tour of the islands – my 15th trip there and I still don’t bore of the place. I even saw new stuff on this trip.
If you’d like to go on a charter like this book with Tengirri, one of the most professionally run boats in the islands. You’ll need 6 or 7 people and there are 2 available charters left for this year, 8-20 Sept and 20 Oct – 1 Nov. Email [email protected] otherwise lock in next year!
See you back in Bondi :: uge

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Lances

If you ever make your way to this part of the world I am pretty sure you’ll see Lance’s left or right. All boats stop by here for a day or so…kinda like tourist attraction No.1 for the Mentawais. It’s the one of the world’s best rights, machined to perfection offering a high performance tube for very experienced surfers only. If you take off on the top peak you have no option but to test your nerves and pull into a fast moving hollow tube before exiting on the surgeon’s table (shallow reef at the end). At low tide it’s a lethal place…one wrong move and you could be begging for mercy on the exposed reef as an 8 foot set approaches. If you’d been here – you’ll know what I mean.
The left ain’t too bad either, a little less intense…
Adios :: uge

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Below Blues

Just like every other day on this trip we’ve scored good waves and great weather again…it has been pretty special up here this past week…3 swells in 11 days. Can’t ask for more than that.
I just spent the afternoon below the surface with my camera, swimming around looking for interesting things to shoot. This is what I found.
Adios :: u g e

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Air Strike

We cruised the Tengirri back up the island chain for a change of scenery and came across 5 of the hottest young aerialists competing for a cool 50 grand. Yep, 50 gees to pull off the most rad air whilst on their boat trip to the Mentawais. Chippa Wilson, Jon-Jon, Ryan – they were all there and puttin’ us to shame. It was incredible to match the perfect waves to hot talent.
Hope all is well back home. We’ve been pretty much disconnected with the rest of the world for over a week now, that feels a little strange…I have no idea if you have swell or weather back in Bondi.
Back soon :: uge

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Remote

Another week and we’re still on the boat in Indonesia. This time we’ve gone to a really remote part of the islands, an area that I’ve never been before. The conditions have to be right before committing to motoring down here – its bit of a drive – but we’ve scored it good, real good. 4-6 foot rights that peel for 200-300 metres. Most of the time you will be surfing on your own. Doesn’t get much better than that…
I’ll be back here for sure. Some of the clearest and bluest water I’ve seen in Indonesia.
Out :: Uge

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Thunderstruck

We finished up late at the right to head south to a wave magnet left called Thunders. No one around…at all. Just how we like it!
The weather is perfect and the swell continues to produce. I hear another swell is due tomorrow so all the boats are heading to their favourite part of the islands in preparation.
The Mentawais are wave rich, but the people are poor. They have very little but smile continuously. You can help support them by donating to SURFAID, an Aussie born charity that supports the people of this remote area (who badly need help).
This report was beamed to you via outer space (Satellite technologies). Cool aye?
Seeya :: uge

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Rocket Rights

If you come to the Mentawai Islands you’ll expect to get barreled…you’ve seen all the surf movies and mags…you’re all pumped to dance in the back of a slippery Indo cave. Some waves are easier to get barreled than others up here.
This vicious right-hander that we surfed today is easy to get barreled but the consequences of bad timing are immense. The reef is sharp and shallow. The crowds are big and hungry pushing deeper and deeper. One slip up and you’re on the reef tippy toeing to the lagoon praying a larger set doesn’t follow. Most people loose some bark here…I did.
Tomorrow we’re heading to more chilled out breaks….and to rest the spaghetti arms. It’s been a busy few days.
:: uge

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Black Hawk down

My mate Paulie and I had this great plan to document the Mentawai Islands from the air. We’ve spent about a year working on this idea, even acquired a remote controlled Octocopter that is large enough to carry one of my pro digi cameras and dragged all the gear up here into remote Indonesia. The plan has been working a treat….test flights ran perfectly and we were preparing for a low surfing shoot at HTs.
That is…until yesterday…
Mayday…Mayday…Black Hawk Down!
For some strange reason Black Hawk plummeted to it’s death in the middle of the ocean without any warning. All diagnostics showed a healthy happy chopper, then the next minute it dropped out of the sky like a lead weight.
R.I.P Black Hawk.
:: uge
PS – There will be a Black Hawk II, don’t worry. Oh, the surf is pumping up here as well.

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Telescopes

We’ve been pretty lucky up here so far. Couldn’t ask for better weather and waves (sorry, I heard it’s pretty ugly back home). The surf has been consistently above head high every day, sometimes bigger and the winds are favourable meaning plenty of options.
Today we’re anchored near Tuapajet, the capital of the Mentawai Islands chain. It’s no big city, a mere shabby village. Just out the front of the village is a world class left hander called Telescopes – one of the A-list breaks up here. It’s perfect…fast, tubing 200 metre ride.
Have a good day :: uge

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Men-tay-wee

Welcome back to paradise folks… today’s Aquabumps escape is being transmitted off the back of charter boat Tengirri in Indonesia. We’re currently 90 miles off the Sumatran coastline amongst the remote Archipelago of Mentawai that hosts some of the best waves in the world. We’ve been here together quite a few times…
Why is it so good here?
Swell consistency – The roaring forties off South Africa supply this area with clean, long period swells for most of the year. April, May and June are particularly good months to be here but you can get lucky at anytime of the year really.
Light variable winds – we’re just below the equator so the winds are favourable most of the time.
Good line ups – lots of islands means lots of coastline and plenty of points and angled reefs for clean swells to grind down. There are 45 breaks to surf in the 100 kilometres of Archipelago.
Remote – it’s in the middle of nowhere and quite hard to get to – meaning fewer surfers.
Warm – the water temperature resembles a spa – 28 degrees. A nice escape from the Aussie winter.
Today we spent most of the day surfing super fun 3-4 footers. Good start. Plenty more to come.
Adios:: uge
PS – some of the photos today were taken by Phil (owner) of Tengirri. If I don’t plug him my dinner portions halve.

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Friday Bonus

It is the goods out there today…a day to get out of town and go surfing.
The sun is shining, the swell is lining up a hell of a lot better than it has been and it’s finally offshore.
She’s a little chilly though, so don’t forget your steamer. We have clean 4-5 footers out there at South facing magnets.
By the time you read this I will be getting out of town myself, probably just a little further than most of you…to the warm and wave rich islands of Indonesia – yep, we’re returning to the Mentawais! So the next two weeks will be broadcast via the back of charter boat Tengirri through our satellite internet contraption. Oh, and one more thing, something different on this trip, we plan to be documenting the islands from the air…which is pretty exciting. That is…if we have no mechanical hitches. We all know how things seem to break in Indonesia.
Over and Out
:: uge
PS – only had time for 1 shot of Bondi today before sunrise (before scrambling to the airport). But here is 6 shots from the Mentawais that will give you a taste of what is to come.

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Settle

After two days of roaring winds and wild seas finally it’s calming down out there.
It’s still big, but far from good. A handful of locations will be on fire today, mainly out of town. Bondi struggles with these big ones. Especially when the swell is rogue and wobbly as it is now. I saw a couple of guys paddle out early, but they returned to shore shortly after.
Today is the day to make your move. Pack the car and drive out of Sydney…as I am guessing late today, or better tomorrow, the surf will turn on…and it will be magic for a couple of days in these favourable winds.
Seeya :: uge

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Bondi Chunks

This must be the 50 year storm that Bodhi (Point Break) has been talking about.
Sydney was turned upside down last night. Roofs ripped off, garage doors flying down the street, trees blown over and the emergency services have been working through the night.
Even Gould Street Bondi has been closed for 14 hours as the roof and front wall above Tuchuzy/Religion has come crumbling down.
The swell has come up….but I’ve seen it bigger than this. It’s around 8 – 10 foot, but seriously angry. I reckon your board would blow out of your hands if you tried to make it out. That’s if you didn’t get sucked out to New Zealand via one of the many rapid rips. All the beaches have sand beyond the break walls, surely, I mean surely there has to be some banks after all this rearrangement.
Apparently 1 dude before sunrise tried to paddle out at Bondi. Mini mal and all…what was he thinking?
Please share your storm experiences here below.
Adios :: uge

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It’s gonna blow

All nice’n’neat’n’calm down the beach this morning. Stark contrast to the monster that is about to unleash tomorrow.
At 7am today you’ve got waist to shoulder high waves on a fun little bank at Bondi. Bondi likes this size, being small, it won’t handle it tomorrow.
The sunrise was a beauty. Real shiner…spraying hues of pink across the bay. Someone once told me that you always get good sunrises after full moon. Maybe true?
So tomorrow we will have a run of 5 metre swell. That will translate to waves only rideable by hell men. Unfortunately a gale of wind is flanky this swell – expect 40 knots ripping through Sydney later today…secure the BBQ lid, lock up the wandering Sulo bins and bring the washing in…it’s gonna blow!
Our recent trip to New Zealand proved very popular with our readership. We’ve put together this little spiel on road trip which includes some tips along the way if you were keen to go over there. Snow season is kicking off, so maybe a ski / surf trip should be on the cards. READ
Ciao:: Uge

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Quiet Mondays

These winter Mondays are the best.
All quiet down the beach…not many people getting outta bed for the early. The line-up was uncrowded and dark with a very late sunrise.
Small but fun shoulder high peaks breaking left and right at South Bondi. Super clean surfaces…barely any wind at all.
The Volcom Fiji Pro is on, right now, as you read this. Cloudbreak is looking perfect and the goofy footers are in heaven. Watch now (Freddy P is ripping – G-Medina just scored a 10)
Have a great week :: uge

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Elevation

The waves were and still are quite good this morning. Bondi is lacking banks so a short drive to Maroubra proved fruitful. Waves broke at the D-bowl around shoulder to head high, plenty of hollow ones at sunrise. Another nice peak in the middle of the beach illustrated from the bird above…The swell is dead south so anything facing that direction will have some grunt.
The weekend will pan out a little like this. It may rain later today and a bit tomorrow but most definitely on Sunday when the front hits. Do all your outdoor stuff tomorrow! Temperatures will be cool and sub 20 (i.e. wintery). The weekend will not host much surf wise, Sunday may show something as a larger swell approaches for early next week.
The doors are open at the Aquabumps Gallery 10am to 6pm all weekend at 151 Curlewis Street Bondi Beach.
Seeya :: uge

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