The first surf charter boats in Bali

On the table at TJ’s restaurant in Kuta stood an advert placard pronouncing that “The Anne Judith II Is Here!” As I delicately nibbled my tacos, in the manner of a starving feral trying to mind his manners, I contemplated the photo of the elegant vessel, her owner and operator Brett Haysom offering surf charters in style. 1985, this was. (More information on Anne Judith II history here)

The Anne Judith II wasn’t the very first surf charter boat. The Moana Manu, renamed the G-land Express, offered direct sea access to what was then the most exotic newly discovered surf break.

The Bali Hyatt at Sanur had a catamaran vessel that was available for hire, skippered by an expat whose name I can’t recall, but that vessel wasn’t a dedicated surf charter boat.

In the early 80s, Made “Ricky” Musma of Lembongan sailed surfers on his big, double-wide outrigger to Lombok and Sumbawa. The surf charter business in Indonesia has always been dominated (almost exclusively so, I would venture to say) by foreign surfer owners and surfing investors. Ricky was the first local surfer/owner offering full surf charter packages.

The Lady Luck, another massive outrigger powered by four outboards as I recall, and owned by Americans, did the Bali-Lombok-Sumbawa circuit, but not for long. She swung on her anchor at inside Desert Point one night, and the shore dump there pretty much pounded her into an unsalvageable state.

Only a partial listing dragged up from the murky depths of my memory. What other surf charter boats, does anybody remember? (Let’s say prior to Martin Daly’s famous 1992 Mentawai trip on the Indies Trader).

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7 Responses to The first surf charter boats in Bali

  1. griz says:

    I recall Daily’s original Mentawai charter prior to the ” Indies Trader ” was on a boat called
    ” Volcanic ” . It not long after burnt down under suspicious circumstances .

  2. miki d says:

    Paul Dem had a boat running in 1984, they pulled at gland while we were there.
    Tim watts, marvin foster etc, .

  3. John Henderson says:

    You guys are kidding / deluded / lazy researchers / etc. I did a surf charter to SE Java in 1975. It was organized by Dave Michel. With my brother, I sailed to Indo in 1977 with 2 doctors from the Darwin Hospital. We surfed Plengkung alone and then did 6 x 8-day charters organized by Tim Watts.

    • Why the antagonism, brother? I knew Michel, and I’ve long known Wattsy as a friend. He was one of the first to surf G-land overland , back when that was heavy going. Would you mind writing up a piece about your experiences? That’s what this blog is about, getting the stories down.

  4. Walter Coker says:

    I was on the Lady Luck in 1993, epic adventure to Lombok and Sumbawa. My recollection is she went down on the reef at Desert Point the very next year, 1994. We came close ourselves in relentless 10-foot standing waves in the Lombok Channel on our way back to Bali. So sketchy!

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