first os trip

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My first trip OSWe are on the wharf in the dark, keen and excited. travel to a new surf spot ( new to us) we had planned this for years. The ferry was due to leave port in the earliest dawn. The southern swell was raising crashing white plumes on the sheer cliffs at the ports entrance. The salt spray almost made the sun rise in the dark! Would the trip be postponed like the day before? No, we?re leaving,and as we move through the swell, boats coming in the opposite direction heading to shelter, are lost in the troughs moving at 20 second intervals through the heads from the open sea.The non surfing passengers turn all shades of green, and move to seek quiet refuge somewhere on board.Water crosses the deck to run out the down trough side of the ferry and into the darkening olive sea, diesel motors chug hard against the swell and a slight oil slick runs seaward with the deck wash. It?s rough enough that we begin to pack every thing except our boards in any waterproof or plastic wrap. We begin to plan from which lower deck door we will abandon the ferry and talk in hushed tones of how we will avoid the churning propellers, as we can hear them come free of the water and cavitate loudly each time the ferry rolls.From the bowels of the ferry, the heated diesel and rancid hot grease smell increases and the crew move about frantically looking slightly green themselves.We take note of where the life rafts ( supposedly gal iron covered balsa pontoons) none of this inflated modern stuff. What about the other passengers, the fat, the old, the children? How noble are we going to be or will we do every man for themselves?

To the western side of the ferry in the increasing light we can see a massive bombora breaking murderously close beneath high cliff and in a back bay we can see the breaks around the cove we left some time back, only to lose these sights as we descend into the great successive troughs.

Nearby a freighter moves out to the deep sea and as we ascend to each crest we look down onto its decks and see that no one is out on them, they would only be washed overboard . Eeriely enough when we pass its stern its home port is PUI KING, black humour can be found anywhere. We pass some time making bad puns about sea sickness and bodily functions good Aussie humour

We churn onwards, ferry and stomachs falling out of rythmn, muffled complaints or perhaps prayers can be heard from the other decks. The diesel smell is worse down here, but the rolling is less, which upsets your stomach more I wonder? Not a queasy question to ponder. More planning, we can see the back of the reef at our destination the net surrounding the bay and around that the wave we have come to ride.It?s obvious this ferry is not going to stop, but we sort of knew that. We put on our wetsuits (hypothermia) head to the lee side door to the outer deck, cross the deck and stand at the rail. The plan is to jump off together when the rail is down in the trough as the propellers are covered deeply. Wrapped clothes and gear under one arm board under the other. We all cheer and leap together and begin to execute part 2, PLF (paddle like funk)clothes tucked under our chests for the 200 yards to the break.

Faces immediately line the windows to see what these ?fools? have done, the ferry cannot come about against the swell and on the bridge we can see crew shaking their fists. Then they chug on away to the next stop.

The swell aids us as we move closer to our spot and we pick a jetty to come ashore.We activate part 3 of our plan. We bury our gear in the sand,(Cause we expect the police to arrive to investigate) paddle out and begin surfing.

The police arrive, cannot find the mystery surfers, and that evening knowing they would be watching the Manly Ferry back, we have a friend drive from Manly over the Harbour bridge to Nielson Park and take us home.

A genuine grommet adventure from the sixtiesbig_smile

Happy old fart!

Nice one Jaff, I love my Sydney Harbour surfing. Were you surfing the middle head bombie or outer Neilsen Park?

Longboarding > You

Yep It was Neilsen Park, Dobroyd Bommie was another expedition but by tinnie.There's a couple likewise spots in Broken Bay, one featured in SW way back Goddard's wharf and others that may rate a mention later.Estuary surf, where the BS is BS and also bull shark.Still the ferry props were more dangerous than anything else I've had to worry about in surfing.

Happy old fart!

Two great places to visit are Manly and Noosa.

Manly has a variety of breaks, my favourite being North Steyne Surf Spot (forecast here) in a E or NE swell.

Noosa also has a variety of breaks, mostly right-handers with my favourite being Tea Tree Surf Spot (surf forecast here).

There are so many epic spots around Oz you just have to follow your nose!

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