Danny on a wave at Culs Nus
Before I went to Hossegor for this year’s Quik Pro France, I had a quick look on the internet, as you do, to see what info I could find about the surf and practical matters such as transfer times and where to eat. Didn’t find much, so I’ve written something myself and posted it on Matador, in the hope that it might help others who haven’t spent much time in the area. But I also wanted to do some more personal waffling on about the week that we spent there.
Ahhhh le French surf. Les Bourdaines very nearly drowned me last time I was in France, so I was nervous, but in the end the surf was either small and no problem (too small, in fact) or huge and no way. The one day I would have ummed and ahhed about going in, I was sick from surfing Le Sud near the harbour. Nice waves there, but crowded and yeah, dirty. The best surf I had was on the first day, when it was hot, sunny (boardies, ahh) and a couple of foot of good old French shorey beachy. Wish we’d had more of that! Didn’t have the chance to travel, though I did hit Bourdaines again, and I think we’d have found better surf if we did.
The group’s focus was watching the Quik Pro comp, though, and I stuck with that.
Not keen on crowds, and boy, was it crowded on the shoreline, with plenty of people happy to come late and try to stand in front of us. Nope! We were there 7.30 some mornings and saw some amazing surfing before most people were up. Rekindled my interest in the Tour, which was never that strong because I wrote all the reports without ever seeing a CT comp! The surfers are real professionals and work so hard. When the waves are as good as they were a couple of days this year, it’s so worth watching. Took a bagful of food, water, beer, suncream etc. and hunkered down for about three days.
So many people in vans, even a couple from Wales. Desperate to get another one for myself. It’s definitely the best way to do it.
big money brands
Pro-hoes: I never could stand the running-after-pro-surfers shit, and I hate it even more when those in question barely knew who Kelly Slater was the week before. Please, please, be cool — they’re just people, and generally they’re pretty laid-back, so you look mental and silly. Sorry. If it’s someone you genuinely admire, go for it; I wish I’d seen Lisa Andersen, for example — I’d definitely have asked her for a photo.
I found my French coming back to me quite easily — I understood quite a lot, although I couldn’t really say much myself. I would make more effort to re-learn it next time; the Michael Thomas CDs were great, but I didn’t do more than a couple of hours.
Bravo took a picture of me and the crowd…
Fashion: Chicks were wearing ‘Daisy Dukes bikinis on top’ and the boys, boardies and t’s. We’re an imaginitive lot, us surfers…haha. Lots of neon brights and loads of people, boys and girls, with lush chunky neon watches (I’m digging out the Roxy Deep again). Loads of gorgeous tattoos, and in all sorts of places. Quite a fan of the under-the-buttock, though maybe not for me at 36, and oh, I’d love one under a ring or on my wrist, but don’t dare — let’s see my next career step first! The big-bun hair of the UK is messy twists and little clipped bits in France; I prefer that. Flat cap peaks, which doesn’t suit me.
…and I took a picture of him
The only other thing to say is that I need to travel more, again…