Black pebbly sand crunched under my feet as I looked out across the cold, kelp-ridden sea. I gritted my teeth and plunged in. My skin was numb as I turned to see snow capped mountains on the distant horizon, stark against an overcast sky. This was my first experience of surfing in
We had flown into
We found a beach along this stretch made up of tiny black rocks that made a squelching sound as you walked along. We’d heard rumours that there was a really good break around this area and decided to explore—hoping to chance upon it, but not really expecting to find anything. Eventually we came to a stream of fresh rainwater from the neighbouring mounting ranges. We decided to jump in taking a free ride down the river towards the ocean.
At the end of the stream we were greeted with a medium sized wave peeling perfectly along a smooth rocky point. The snow-covered, massive Mt Taranaki was the backdrop in the distance. This is what we had came to see, awesome landscapes and uncrowded, perfectly breaking waves. The only other surfers we encountered were two local guys. They were a bit grumpy, but seemed impressed that we had found their secret spot. They mumbled replies to our greetings and vacated the waters soon after we arrived.
From the Taranaki region we travelled to the world-renowned surf break of Raglan, first exposed to the surfing world through Bruce Brown’s movie ‘Endless Summer’ (1966), which highlighted its unbelievably long breaking left point. Raglan was a chilled-out town with a similar vibe to
Our next destination was back on the east coast of the north island, in the prosperous town of
The author: Richard Price is a student in Creative Writing at QUT.