Righteous Waves in West Oz

19 Oct 2011 0

Video by Tim Bonython

Another incredible swell event hit Southwest Western Australia over the weekend, with deadly spot about one kilometre off the coast turning on a great couple of days of waves for locals and roving slab-hunters alike.

“It's really one of the world’s great waves,” said film-maker Tim Bonython who’s visited the fickle offshore reef numerous times before. “It’s one of the great slab waves of the Southern Hemisphere, but it’s a spot that can easily not deliver what we are wanting – big, slabbing barrels. This time the Right delivered. Craziness”.

Check out the vision....


“It was way more evil than I have ever surfed it before,” was how Mark Mathews described the session.

With a huge swell on the charts, he was back at the Right. along with  Richie Vas, Ryan Hippwood, Laurie Towner, Jack ‘chainsaw’ Kingsley and former AFL hardnut Phil ‘choppa’ Ried. The local boys surfed it the day before, but with low tides making for imperfect and unpredictable conditions, the crew had it to themselves.


“I wish it was predictable; I wouldn’t of let go on that set!” said Mark, of his end-section shutdown pictured above. “The tides were lower than I have ever surfed it before, or the swell period was shorter so the waves were closer together. The first wave would take all the water off the reef and make the next one close out… It was unusually shallow this day and you could fully see the reef on the big ones, but it goes deep really quickly… As soon as it was too late to get off, I realized I really shouldn’t be there… I just figured safest place would be in the barrel.”

There were plenty of other beatings going down too, with reknown charger Rohan Annssley bursting his ear drum after hitting the reef before copping a two-wave hold down the day before, and Ryan Hipwood nearly drowning during this session.

“It’s different every wave,” said Mathews of the wipeouts. “That one was really violent but not deep. Others push you so deep your head feels like it will blow up… A few of the boys had crazy two-wave hold-downs. Hippo had one that would of been three waves if it didn’t go flat after the second. He came up really rattled on the verge of blacking out”.

See more of Mark's big-wave surfing in the upcoming film, Fighting Fear...

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