It might be a small island, and the surfing part of it even smaller, but your blog correspondent never met Allan Byrne. I doubt we even dipped toes together in the same general vicinity of water at the same general time, because AB ripped Padang, and I wasn’t a West side sort of surfer, not even in the early days (Airport lefts & Middles being the exception before they had official names).
I did see plenty of channel-bottom Byrning Spears, though. Now their creator is gone, dying after a motorbike accident in his beloved Bali. Are there any hands that can take up shaping those hand-crafted gems?
AB surfed Bali early. That first generation of travelers and local Balinese kids, who frolicked in the early 70s, are now 45 years older than when they were. AB proved that 60 is the new 40 (20-foot Hawaiian outer reefs on his 60th?), but even so, the Morning of the Earth generation is getting a bit long in the tooth. We’re close to the exit, the hang ten ride off this mortal sea.
AB died too young. Respect the man, respect the legacy, respect the grief, but it’s a grim reminder that if you must ride a motorbike wear a good helmet, keep in mind that no matter how safe you ride the other guy probably is not, and have medevac/accident insurance. The latter is inexpensive compared to what could happen.