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Photo: Kit Stokes.


f u n!

Photo: Ellie Woodward.

Harlyn Bay, Cornwall, UK.





MAY 2016

Hello Sliders! Got some real gems this month - (as always - thanks to YOU the readers). From some guidance in becoming more comfortable in bigger surf, to a Bank Holiday cycle surf trip everyone will be inspired to do! Remember - we always welcome submissions for following issues - email us at : - Editor -Gemma Stokes.

Bellyboard FUN! The forecast showed pretty flat conditions and The Slideshow gang were desperate to get in the sea and have some fun. However, up at Harlyn there was actually a mega fun little low tide wave, and we were frothing! Out back we were surrounded by a whole variety of craft - bellyboards, handplanes, shortboards, longboards. Everyone seemed to be equally as keen to fly down the face of the punchy little peelers. There were some slightly amused faces at our whoops and hollers each time someone went on a bombie! But I’m pretty sure the guys on shortboards secretly wanted to have a go! Words:: Gemma Stokes, photos Ellie Woodward, Cornwall, UK.

Ellie Woodward looking down the line


Bigger Surf Surfing outside of our comfort zone is something we can all probably relate to. The butterfly feeling, the dilated pupils, the shakey hands. Keeping calm in bigger surf is something that is learned over time, however here are a few tips to have a better session when surfing in waves larger than what you are comfortable with...

{take 10 deep breaths} You were probably expecting this one, but for good reason. Taking 10 deep breathes allows us to effectively lower our heart rate, stop shallow breathing and get sufficient oxygen flowing to our muscles and brain. This will enable you to think more clearly, feel more in control and see the situation more for what it is, not for what you perceive it to be. Try it.

{just go} More often than not, thinking about the worst case scenario is more terrifying than if the actual event happened itself. Thinking about going over the falls on a six ft wave is terrifying. What if I hit the bottom? What if I get rolled? Turns out if that does actually happen to you, it will be over in about 3 seconds, and you will pop up thinking, “well that was wild.” Quite often it is best to just give it a go, see what happens and put the fear back into its rightful place.

{have a back up plan} If you are feeling really sketched about the ocean a good thing to do is to have a back up plan. This could be an area that you can paddle to where the waves aren’t breaking to catch your breath, an exit route back into shore, or even a person who you can talk to that will help calm you down. Being vigilant about the aspects that we can control will give us more confidence about the situation that we are in.

Photo: Gemma Stokes.

{head out with someone you trust} Heading out into the surf with someone we trust give us a lot more confidence that things will be ok, because we have a buddy watching out for us. This is both comforting and indeed sensible in sketchy ocean conditions as if you do get into danger your buddy can act as a flare, a signal to others that things are not ok for you. Generally speaking surfers look out for each other but to have your own personal lifeline through a friend is a powerful thing to have.

{Be confident in your equipment} Riding the old shitter thats been in the shed for 2 years? Feel as though your leg rope only has a thread to go before you say see ya later? Having confidence in your equipment is very helpful for your peace of mind when you are out in uncomfortable surfing conditions. Our boards and leg ropes do act as a lifejacket for us and with them gone, we are much more vulnerable to disaster. Before you head out in conditions that are above your comfort zone check that you are trusting in your equipment and you are much more likely to make the most of your session.

{Don’t hesitate} When making decisions in uncomfortable surf, don’t hesitate. Now in saying this I do not mean don’t think about what you are doing. Not at all. I mean when you have thought about it, decided that you are going to do it, do it with everything you have. If you are paddling into a solid wave, you are much more likely to make it, if you go ahead at full speed, rather than hesitating on the last paddle and getting hung up in the lip. Hesitation is the death of success.

{Overall} When surfing in conditions that are beyond your skill level be sensible. If you can’t get out the back no matter how hard you try, there is probably a reason for it. Though to progress we have to be put in uncomfortable situations and overcome them, awareness of the dangers and your own ability level is key to ensuring your safety and having fun. Be aware of the dangers, have confidence in yourself, and put in place the blocks you need to ensure that you can make the most out of the challenge that is offered to you. Words: Ruby Meade.

Bigger Surf

Photo: Gemma Stokes.



Ever wondered what to do on the May bank holiday?

The luxury of a three day weekend is thanks to the traditional spring festival and is always a sign that summer is just around the corner; the water is getting warmer and evenings longer. However, it can also be the first reminder of summer traffic and busier line-ups. So, in April when the idea of cycling to France was suggested, my only thoughts were‌ waves,

camping and patisseries. The combination of these three things seemed like the perfect bank holiday adventure. Two days before we set sail, I began to gather a wide range of excessively warm camping gear, oiled my trusty mountain bike and borrowed a nifty surfboard rack.

Photo: AndrĂŠ Spee.

Then the next thing I know, the sun was setting on Friday evening and we were actually on route, winding our way slowly through the streets of Plymouth, headed for the ferry port and some soon to be amused ferry staff. After a few hours of smooth sailing, Roscoff welcomed us with a morning coffee and croissant. Once refreshed, our thoughts returned to the need to discover surf and then the hunt was on to find the nearest wave!

photos: George Crossley


The search proved successful! Thanks to the French and their appreciation of cycling, we were able to meander along a scenic cycle route for a few kilometres, until we headed off the road, down over a line of sand dunes and found ourselves at Le Dossen. Our efforts were greeted with the sight of a fun looking, 2ft beach break with moderate crossoff winds. Looking at the near empty beach meant

only one thing to us all; pile up the bikes, dig out the wetsuits and get in! After an afternoon enjoying clear skies, fun, friendly waves, island exploring and longboard trailer repairs, we ended our first full day wild camping in a deserted campsite.

Sunday dawned bright but cold. On my part, after a night of seemingly not so warm camping, I was glad of a hot cup of tea and another warm day ahead. The surf check revealed the inevitable, that the swell had dropped in the night which left only one choice, to continue on down the coast in search of a more open beach. Our destination was Boutrouilles, noted as a ‘good higher tide beach breaks’ with a ‘friendly

atmosphere’ - (The Stormrider Guide Europe). As the surf forecast had predicted little incoming swell, we decided to spend the day slowly cycling along the Brest coastline, enjoying the quaint villages, green farmland and secluded bays that this area is made up of. We passed through idyllic scenery, stopped for divine local hot chocolate and peddled along comfortably quiet roads, until photos: George Crossley


A peaceful night stretched into a peaceful morning and at 5am we woke up to a quiet dawn‌the new swell had not arrived. With the optimal tide not due until the exact time our ferry was scheduled to leave, the decision was simple, head back towards Roscoff and hope that the swell hits before lunchtime. Taking the more direct route to deliver us back to Le Dossen, we made it in time for

the flooding tide to start making use of the small swell beginning to push through. After an enjoyable session, we loaded up our bikes with boards and wetsuits for the final time and swung back on the road to meet the ferry that would take us home. Resting on the ferry as it pitched through the long awaited surf, we all agreed that the last three days had been the best use of this year’s spring bank holiday weekend. With only a few tumbles or crashes and no flat tyres, we had cycled to continental waves and surfed the secluded shores, on a self-sufficient, low carbon surfing trip. Words: Claire Smail, Edited by George Crossley.

Alder wetsuits, Diplock Pheonix Surfboards, Saltrock Clothing

Photo:Nadine Binias

after many leisurely kilometres we reached our destination. Boutrouilles turned out to be a sleepy place, graced with the most dramatic granite rock formations and tranquil aqua blue water. Its location was perfect and if any swell did start to push in, we would be in the right place to catch it. Thus another night of decidedly warmer, wild camping was undertaken with the hope of an early morning surf.

Honolua Bay, Hawaii. Waves wrapping round the point at Honolua bay. Photo: Gen Conquest.

Photo: Gemma Stokes.

Cornwall, UK.

AL/FF 2016


Image: Gemma Stokes.

A couple of weeks ago, Newquay was treated to a two-night surf film bonanza, COURTESY OF APPROACHING LINES AND REEF. Here’s a short review on our top picks...

Fish Fascinating insight into the unusual circumstances that gave birth to the fish surfboard design. I had no idea that the fish was designed by a knee boarder! And it wasn’t long before the surfers were taking notice of the speed and manoeuvrability of Steve Liss’s unusual sliding craft. With a template that was born out of a need to reduce the drag that his knee board fins were causing (which is where the infamous swallow trail came from), the fish had all the right elements for unprecedented progression. In short, Steve Liss got the design right first time. This film has some stunning surfing in it, from the likes of Dave rastovich and Donavon Frankenreiter, and for the first time in many years it made me want to put my shortboard to one side and go out and ride unusual boards again.

Image: Courtesy of Approaching Lines.


Image: Courtesy of Approaching Lines.

AL/FF 2016

REVIEWS Dirty old wedge. I’ve always loved watching people surf the wedge. The footage of people taking it on and getting drilled into the near-dry sand on the inside gives me a mini adrenaline rush every time. As we sat in the packed out cinema, you could sense a huge buzz of energy and excitement from the audience. Frothing to see some of that carnage on the big screen, we were about to see the European Premiere of this film only the second audience in the world to set eyes on this new film. And it did not disappoint! The footage is some of the craziest and most hi-definition body whomping I’ve ever seen, but the film had a lot more to offer than just surfing footage. It documents how the wave was created, and the early chargers taking on the big wedge for the first time. It shows the ‘Wedge Crew’ ruling the roost in the eighties, and how they went to court in order to protect their wave from an influx of dangerously inexperienced boogie boarders in the nineties. There’s a lot of laughs in this film, but there’s also heartache as they pay tribute to those who’s lives were either permanently changed, or lost, in the pursuit of bodysurfing nirvana. This film is a must see.

5/5! Words by Kit Stokes, Cornwall, UK

Dirty old wedge.

AL/FF 2016


Image: Courtesy of Approaching Lines.




Photo: Ellie Woodward.

The Slideshow magazine :: Issue #35  

a magazine for surfing females. Spreading the stoke around the world. Join the community!

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