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a magazine for surfing females.

This is Scotland

#19. MAY ISSUE This month’s edition of The Slideshow magazine, comes to you from the most north western Scottish island - the Hebridean Isle of Lewis. A little Slideshow excursion in search of waves has given me a pretty wild and exciting environment in which to bring this issue together. Although our week long trip didn’t line up with any spectacluar swell, we fully explored the coastlines reefs, points and beaches, got in for a few tricklers, danced at a Ceilidh, and soaked up the sheer awesomeness of the Hebridean landscapes. I’m looking at it as a worthwhile reconnaissance mission for next time. Gemma, Editor.

Photo by Gemma Chalmers.


search for surf

Photo: Archie Deep -

I remember this day at dawn we went surfing south on Oleron Island and we found some really good waves - over head, clean and powerful! Then when we were heading back home, we thought maybe we could get some more a bit further north up the coast, something more suited to our longboards perhaps? This photo is from the session we had...2-3ft, clean and perfect to get some longboard action.

I was really stoked about this day! This photo also got me to be part of the ‘suckmybarrel team’ as a rider. I can’t wait for summer to be there again to get more! Find out more about Elodie and her sponsors on: Words: Elodie Miane, Oleron Island, France


3-2-1-go! My first time competing. Every year since 1994 surfers from the “far east” of New Zealand get together for one day to celebrate the beauty of longboard riding and to thank the ocean for giving us waves. “Makorori First Light Longboarding Classic” in Gisborne, NZ is a family oriented, fun, social and unique event where all levels of surfers are welcome to join.

With some persuasion from my dear friend Lorna from Perranporth, who now livies in NZ, I ended up subscribing for the contest. Knowing little about competing I was excited and happy to be part of a nice get together. There was only one problem; I needed a Longboard! A good friend of Lorna´s “Maori Cam” was the solution, he had a rather well used 9” BIC Single Fin in his backyard which I was happy to use.

SUDDENLY, IT ALL BECAME SERIOUS Early morning, the day of the event at 6am I woke up in my car to see massive white water rolling in and on-shore wind blowing. “Nooo” that was not how I had expected to compete... Fortunately that was what everyone thought! And so the contest moved to “Gizzy Pipe”, the town beach where a head high glassy green wave was breaking. One of the higher ranked Maori’s opened the celebration with a beautiful prayer to the ocean. And from then, the competition was on. As the womens heats where scheduled after lunch I went for a little warm up surf first thing. An hour later on my return, exhausted from the session, the wind had turned and the sea looked messy and grey. The Beach Marshall informed me that my heat had been brought forward and that I was to enter in the next 10 min. Ohh! Hungry and tired, I quickly smashed an avocado, stole my friend´s coffee and with the tune “Fox on the Run” I made my way down to my first heat ever.

Photos: Courtesy of Concha Rossler.

3-2-1-go! My first time competing.

It all went fast from there… Lycra vest on,

“Good luck girls” and “yewww” we all

wax the board, paddle out - and then? I had

screamed, and with the horn beeping and

no idea. When do I start, when do I know it

the signal turning green I had 15minutes to

is over? Sunny, one of my competitors and

catch as many good waves as I could. A

wife of Mikey T (Raglan Longboards and

little stressful I have to say. It was a hard

Bear Longboards shaper) smiled and gave

heat, my arms were tired from my free-surf

me a quick brief: “two green signs - go! Red

beforehand and I struggled to catch waves.

and green sign - five more minutes, two red

For that reason I had to try to get at least two

signs - finish.”

good turns to get myself a score I thought, just then the horn beeped and it was over.

Photos: Courtesy of Concha Rossler.

Nice try I thought‌ however the judges

the heat with 1st place and so it went on.

seemed to be on my side - I got 2nd in my

The day had started so picturesque sunny

first round, meaning there was more to

and mild but somehow for the finals, it had


turned into a proper cold autumn day. Nothing we could do about it, the last surf was to

During the next heat the waves got messy,

come for Sunny and me.

the tide was low and the wind was howling. After surfing similar conditions so often in the UK this was familiar to me! I finished

3-2-1-go! My first time competing.

Concha - ripping in Round One!

Photos: Courtesy of Concha Rossler.

3-2-1-go! My first time competing.

Photos: Courtesy of Concha Rossler.

Photos: Courtesy of Concha Rossler.

Cheering each other on, we ran into the sea for the last time that day. I was enjoying myself. Never had I thought I would make it that far, so here I tried my best. And with a big smile on my face I took wave after wave, turn after turn in rather difficult conditions, until I heard the beep. The contest was over. Time for a beer with Sunny and the other girls. And never would I have guessed - but I won the contest! Words: Concha Rossler, travelling in NZ.

3-2-1-go! My first time competing.

The landlocked


I have always had an affinity with the ocean, yet for most of my life, I witnessed its beauty and power from dry land. Over the years, I became fascinated with surfing and surf culture. So, at age 33, having watched from afar for too long, I booked my first surf lesson.

It was the first time I had ever set foot in the sea and when I caught my first wave, I was instantly in love. I had never experienced such a sense of exhilarating joy like it. I was hooked and I wanted more! The only problem is that I am what you would call, landlocked. I live miles away from the nearest surf so I’m not able to surf regularly. But I made a commitment to myself after that first lesson – to surf as often as possible and become the best that I can be given my lack of watertime. For that reason, I refused to let geography be a barrier.

I surf as often as I can, racking up many miles and travel time to get to the beach. Im still very much a beginner, and my stand up ratio is still very low. I often have one good surf session followed by a few bad ones.

Sometimes it feels like i’m taking one step forward and then several backwards. So why do I do it? Because it’s worth it for those moments when I ride a wave, and experience that sheer joy, exhilaration and connection with the sea. Something that only a surfer truly understands. It’s what drives me onwards, and keeps me focussed…

the excitement of that next surf trip and the thrill of the next wave. It’s a love affair that will last a lifetime.

Kirsty Hill, Wolverhampon, UK

Some time during the darkness between february and march of this year, a c o n v e r s a t i o n took place. The outcome resulted in my alarm being set for seven am the following morning, with my first surf in several years being on the cards! So after snoozing said alarm a few times and a frantic rummage in a cobwebby shed to find my poor neglected board; I just had time to down a quick cuppa before my lift arrived.

We set off along country roads, through receding floodwaters from recent storms, to our spot of choice. But unlike many similar scenarios that probably played out that morning, our destination was not Watergate, Sennen or Fistral. You see, we’re from the Isle of Wight and yes, there’s surf down here too.

Illustrations by Steffie Haynes. There has been a surfing community on the Island since the sixties, and today there’s quite a band of dedicated surfers that chase the waves as they propagate the English Channel every season. And although I grew up here I would certainly not profess to be one of them! But a recently booked surf trip to Portugal inspired me to dust off the board I had scarcely used since moving back home almost three years ago. That and the bumper crop of swells that just kept pushing through this winter, sparking excited babble from various Islanders of the male variety. The most popular surf spot was going to be a no-go due to strong onshore winds but our hope was that some of the swell would be powerful enough to wrap around to a few of the more sheltered locations, so we headed southeast. In the summer this part of the Island is solely the domain of the blue rinse

brigade and holidaying families but today we shared the coast with a few dog walkers and a handful of surfers with the same idea as us. We were tempted to join them at a little wave at Shanklin but opted to avoid the ‘crowds’ and wait for the tide at another spot that I had never surfed before. After being assured that there were no rogue rocks and an ‘interesting’ scrabble over some battered old sea defences it was an easy paddle out back. The sun was shining, the sky was blue and we were the only three people out. The waves were pretty small but

clean, and I was super happy when I caught the first wave I paddled for. Admittedly, I fell off quite soon after I popped up, but I wasn’t kidding myself about my abilities after such a long break. The guys were getting a few sweet rides too and eventually we were joined by another surfer who turned out to be an old school friend (this is why I love living on the Island!). After a while the tide had crept up to the cliff-line and the rebounding waves began to distort the incoming ones. Plus, my fourteen year old boots were proving inefficient against the cold; so I retreated to the van. In all it was a perfect little slice of Island surf and just enough to leave me hungry for more. So our waves may be a little more inconsistent, and our waters a little less blue, but surfing down south definitely deserves a mention. I’m looking forward to the next session already! Words & illustrations: Steffie Haynes, Isle of Wight, UK.



A plethora of surf films

was brought to us by Approaching Lines last month. Spread across three stellar evenings, we were treated to visual feast from filmmakers across the globe. The Salt Trail provided awesome cinematography, and opulent timelapse sequences from journeys through Bali and The Mentawai’s. The Old, The Young & The Sea was a stunning insight into the lives of people and their individual connections with the sea. A storytelling masterpiece that left everyone deeply touched and inspired by it’s very personal depictions of surfing through France, Spain and Portugal. Adventure and exploration shone through in The Fortune Wild, Cradle of Storms and Russia. With some standout highlights including pointbreaks in British Columbia, Kamchatkan peelers, and wild North Atlantic breakers, and an epic slab endlessly barreling in pristine blue icy water, against a backdrop of snow-capped volcanoes in Alaska. Another highlight was Kepa Acero presenting the UK premiere of his film Under Desert Sun...

urf like Kepa... it will make you happy!!

‘Surfers are travellers and so are the waves they ride.’ The opening words of

Bruce Brown’s Endless Summer II seem fitting for Kepa Acero, but where Pat and Wingnut took off on the typical surfing trip, staying with friends or in comfortable accommodation, following a well-trodden path to the planet’s most iconic surf spots Kepa takes the less travelled path. Sure, this isn’t the first time it’s been done. The essence of the modern surfing life, born out of a desire to ride waves, be in the sea and shake off the frustrations on land, has always been part of the surfing consciousness. Tom Blake lived this way, lifeguarding, designing equipment and teaching through the 1920s to keep surfing. The early big wave surfers carried this on, living out of army quonset huts on Oahu, making boards and trunks in California to pay for their winters pioneering big waves in the 40s and 50s. Dora set the benchmark for single minded devotion to riding waves away from the growing pop culture spotlight in the 60s. Then Naughton and Peterson hit the road in the 70s, funding their travels through unchartered corners of the world in search of empty waves, through mailed articles to Surfer magazine. The list goes on, and these individuals were often the figureheads for hundreds and thousands of characters living the same way away from the magazines and films of their time. But with surf culture now reaching the furthest corners of the world and surf camps complete with lifts to the best breaks, gourmet food, spa treatments and air conditioning existing on every shore with waves, it’s beginning to feel like the true spirit of surfing could be extinguished. Watching Kepa’s surfing adventures and listening to him talk in front of the audience at the Approaching Lines film festival reminds us it’s alive

and well. Searching for spots on google earth, uploading videos to surfing media and presenting at film festivals may have replaced heading to unknown coasts and sending hand written accounts by mail to bring in the funds. But in the digital age, exploring untouched corners can still mean scoring word class waves to yourself. Most importantly Kepa’s adventures show that the people haven’t changed, once out of signal and without a wifi hotspot in sight, the world is the same place it has always been. The people you meet, the cultures you experience on the road are still as unique, diverse and exciting as ever. Kepa’s excitement for this aspect of travel, the connection with the people and the freedom and excitement of searching unchartered coasts reminds you of what is important in surfing. Being in the sea, doing something you love and sharing this with people that were strangers in another country a few days before. Go watch Kepa, it will make you happy. See him talk about his adventures without an ounce of competitive ego and just a big smile, it will have you scouring google earth and booking one way flights to empty coasts the next day...well it did for me! All is ok, the surfing spirit is alive and well. Matt Ashley, Plymouth, UK.



Image courtesy of Demi Rossouw.


The Slideshow magazine. #19 - May Issue.  
The Slideshow magazine. #19 - May Issue.  

a magazine for surfing females.