Guest post, Robert Wilson: First (known) surf at One Palm Point, Panaitan Island

An early ‘ SURFARI ‘

By Robert Wilson

What would ‘ Bali Surf Stories ‘ be without stories ..

I first met Martin around 1981, there were no real crowds in Bali however he already had a penchant for discovery and finding the virgin wave. I recall one day we took his 4WD and surfed a spot by ourselves between Greenball and Nusa Dua, had a ball.

In 1983 I was in Jakarta and did a little work with Martin for Dave Barnett, the owner and skipper of the salvage vessel ‘ Raider ‘, later to be renamed the ‘ Indies Trader ‘.

In April 1983, Martin, Wylie, Roscoe, Chitty & myself pooled some money and Dave and his adopted first mate, Kiwi Pete took us on a trip to Panaitan and Enggano, here’s a shot I took the day we arrived at Panaitan.

Whether Panaitan had been surfed before we don’t know, it’s quite possible the intrepid Peter Troy and others had been before us. We gave it a shot but in all
honesty didn’t do the wave justice, we all came out unscathed though which
was a big plus,.. No Medivac in those days …

Grub [ Mc Cabe ] was supposed to have come along but couldn’t make it, he would have been more than up for the challenge.

Classic trip, good mates, great waves and one of the first Surf Discovery voyages in the region.

The rest is history.



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8 Responses to Guest post, Robert Wilson: First (known) surf at One Palm Point, Panaitan Island

  1. Bukit Bear says:

    Would love to have read the captain’s log from that mission….

    • Sil says:

      Somehow I don’t think Dave would have written much down, ha ha :]

      We did a dive on a very old Portuguese timber ship, I found two rum bottles, one of which later fell apart, the other of which I still have.

  2. Jimmy says:

    It would have been an amazing time to explore the area. You’d almost have to travel to an undersea cave on Mars to find new waves nowdays!

  3. kav says:

    First trip to indo at 18 years old in 1988 a bloke called brett beazely
    captained a paul king boat out to one palm for me and my mates.
    First surf in indo pulled up to 8 foot flawelss one palm 2 days straight.
    Got flogged and scared shitless thought all the waves in indo would be like this.
    Surfed illusions days later and brett indicated he didnt know of any one else who had surfed it. Anyone know what happened to brett, he was a charger and when illusions was first surfed.

    • sil says:

      Kav, yeah Brett loved One Palm and surfed it well, probably one of the first who did. Haven’t heard from him in awhile though.

  4. Jo says:

    Nice. I went first time last april. My buddy and I had to surf it before swell dropped, at super low tide was our only chance. Most intense surf of my life. My friend was reefed to my horror. After being in the tube so long i saw the reef passing by and coloring the inside of the tube with its brown. The lip hit my head, i instantly flipped over in the air and somehow in the fall never hit anything. I was reefed later on as well. Some of best times of my life there.

  5. sil says:

    Check out ‘ Early Blessings ‘ on U tube.

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