Hola mis amigos, It is Tuesday May 18 and we are sitting in the Red Bull office in Santa Monica utilizing modern technology for the first time in a week. We arrived late last night from our surf trip to Mexico which turned out to be a great trip. We flew down from LAX to Mexico City and then hopped on another flight to a southern Mexico town (intentionally unnamed). Walking of the plane onto the tarmac the heat hits you instantly. I already regret being warm when I left and wearing jeans, shoes, and a sweater when my trip began. I am sweating by the first ten yards of the 100 yard walk into the airport and into baggage claim. The airport itself looks as though it is made up of just three small south pacific style huts with thatched roofs. As soon as my baggage is delivered I change into boardshorts, a white t-shirt and slippers. This does little for the heat but is still an improvement. Once the bags and boards are gathered it is on to customs. Not being a very experienced world traveler I figure this will just take a moment. I soon realize the Mexican customs agents are huge fans of surfers and love donations to be paid for each board they bring into the country. Luckily my camera equipment is 'low-tech' enough to not warrant a second look and I escape without having to support their families, which is not the case for Ian and the other members of our entourage. The group included Dusty Payne and Kai Barger, who joined us on our flight down but had plans of their own, and our group of Ian, Fox surf team manager Chris, and three other team riders. Once through the airport our guide, who we named Bob Marley, and his staff loaded our bags and we started the two hour drive to our camp.
Having never been on a surf trip to a camp in Mexico my imagination runs wild with what to expect in terms of accommodations. As we drive by towns that appear lacking hot water and air conditioning I begin to just hope for a futon to sleep on for the trip. As we pull up to the gate of our new home I quickly realize that I have happily underestimated what I was in for. We enter through a large metal gate into a house reminding me of Tony Montana's compound in Scarface. We are led to our room and could not be more excited to see two double beds in an ac'd room complete with walk-in closet and its own full bathroom. The experience kept improving with every meal. Gourmet dishes ranging from enchiladas (verde and mole) to roasted chicken with rice pilaf and veggies. Each meal leaves us completely satisfied and helps keep group morale up in the heat.
With everyone settled in to the camp it was time to do what we came for. We loaded everything in to our two 4WD trucks, boards in one, camera gear in the other, the search for waves was on. We left everyday at the crack of dawn in an effort to beat the heat, surf for a few hours then hang at home till the afternoon lighting and then surf again. There was one exception. The biggest day of the swell, Friday, we packed up and hiked a twenty minute hike along a deserted beach where we spent the entire day surfing some of the best waves I have ever seen. All in all the waves in southern Mexico are perfect little right point breaks that run along a sand bank that are as inviting as can be. I manage to surf every evening when Ian is simply to tired to paddle and walks up and hands me his board. As excited as can be to surf the last thing he says to me, "Just dont fall cause it is the best board I have had in years". No pressure at all, but still super fun. With five full days of surfing from dawn till dusk we are all exhausted at the end and can barely move through the airports on the way home but are all leaving with ear to ear smiles on our faces and anxious to return with the next swells.
11 May 2010
It has been a loose couple of weeks in California. The XXL awards were two fridays ago and a lot of fun. Drinks all around, racist comments and breaking in hotel rooms. All in all a pretty legendary night. After the awards we moved down south to Encinitas to stay with Benji and get out of the city and into the surf town vibe. Benji is easily on of the funniest humans around and his house is always a fun place to be. Things got even more crazy when the Freedom Artists RV pulled up out front complete with a six foot dinosaur piñata. After a rowdy round of golf, a few party's and a lot of fun, It was thursday and Walsh needed to be in LA for the filming of Red Bull Athlete Exam. After nailing the show in one take, and twelve beers, we were straight to Orange County airport for a flight to Las Vegas. After three long days of losing in blackjack and winning in Roulette, with a drink sprinkled in here and there, we were back in LA on zero sleep on monday. Today is tuesday and it has been a rest day till our flight to Mexico takes off at midnight for what is forecasted to be some of the best swells the region has had in a long time. Ready to get a good wave and some quality clips we are anxious for this flight. It will be a week in Mexico and then I get to go home to Maui while Ian is off to Fiji. We meet up again in Australia at the end of May for a month of surfing. Can't wait...