Weekender II – A Young, Free, Alright! Special Feature
Presented by Arnette
Young, Free, Alright! is a fortnightly editorial series showcasing and profiling young and up-and-coming people we dig. Recently, thanks to Arnette and Bendalong Tourist park we were able to throw a couple of them the the opportunitiy to hang out and shoot a bunch of shredders with us for our second Weekender. Stoked! – Ed
Surfers: Jake Sylvester, Kalani Ball, Letty Mortenson, Otis Carey, Benny Godwin, Pama Davies & Soli Bailiey
Story by Dan Caban
“How’s that section on that wedge!? Could easily punt on that, man.”
Lliam ‘Letty’ Mortenson, 17-year-old natural footer from Avalon, points into the distance at a sloppy, onshore right-hander before throwing his hands into the air in pure froth. I stand next to young Tasmanian photographer Digby Ayton. He turns and shrugs, “far better than anything I’d be getting at home.”
Already arrived is the current Australasian Junior Champion, Novocastrian Jake Sylvester. He tells of his lonely journey down and asks when the rest of the crew will be arriving.
Unlike our last weekend adventure, everyone managed to find their way easily so everyone headed out for the first surf of the trip – lead by Letty of course, he wasn’t hard to see in his bright red wetsuit.
Sitting on the cracked pavement and fixing his lens is Alex Brunton, fresh off a shoot photo assisting for Trevor King and Kai Neville. Al turns 21 in two days and is perplexed by the idea, as he claims, “21 is old man, real old.”
Tyler Bell, 18 year-old filmmaker from Manly swims out alongside Digby and is curious who the best surfer to visit Digby’s area of Tassie is.
“I think Craig Anderson was at my local beach once. That’s what I heard. No one ever comes though, it’s too cold for them,” he laughs.
The fourth Young, Free, Alright! lensman, Ulladulla filmer Dane Singleton, is 20,000 feet above Australia on his way home from Bali with Bondi aerialist Pama Davies, who will also be joining us. Dane’s trip to Bali didn’t go to plan, however. Now minus his wisdom teeth, he is certainly glad to be home.
Paddling out after a nearly stomped full-rote, rising junior star Kalani Ball looks to the sky, “Maybe that’s Dane’s plane there. Probably not, but you never know.”
Waiting back at the cabins are Otis Carey and Benny Godwin, Young, Free, Alright! regulars as it seems. When the sun’s light failed to give any further opportunity, the wet silhouettes trod back up the track to exchange stories and laughs. In the background is the muttered swearing of the Surfing World Deputy Editor, as he can’t work the Jayco caravan he is staying in.
“Mate, the lights wont even turn on. I reckon the thing is busted.”
We later learn that he only needed to flick the major switch to enable the power – he’s lucky he’s a good writer.
The next morning boards and bodies being thrown into cars that head their separate ways. The straight nature of the swell meant not many options were attractive. We’d been on the road for over an hour when my phone buzzes – a video from Tyler Bell. It’s Otis Carey hiding beneath an emerald green lip, packed deep behind the section and getting barrelled with style. “It’s on,” the message read.
That afternoon awaited the arrival of Dane, Pama and Byron Bay’s Soli Bailey – all itching to get in the water after a long day on the road. They came from everywhere. They came from north and south. Interstate and international. They brought lenses and hair dye, but finally, they were all here.
Splitting again the next day, the coastline was riddled with set-ups waiting to be hit. There were lined up right points, novelty left ramps and unridden peaks in between. Surfing three sessions in a day, everyone was anxious to check the clips and shots that afternoon.
Wet, salty eyed and stoked, Jake’s servings of near-raw steaks went down quickly that night around the table. The camp fire later saw typical 21st speeches for Alex, yet no one had known him for more than two days, so they weren’t the craziest tales you’ve ever heard. The Rolling Stones played late into the evening as the smoke lifted itself towards the stars.
When the morning sun seeped through the curtains, and the raw power of the ocean as an overnight swell peaked was heard, breakfast was poured and sore heads weren’t comforted.
The Rolling Stones continued to play somewhere down the hall.
“I see a red door and I want to paint it black,” Mick Jagger heaves.
Jake walks through the doors.
“Painting? Turn that off, there’s surfing to be done.”blog comments powered by Disqus
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