The way the hype was building for over a week, you would have thought Jesus Christ, He Who Walked on Water, was going to show up with his step-up board.
Now your blog correspondent must state up front that he did not so much as put foot in water for this swell. Twas onshore all night and day in his neck of the woods and his hernia scar still pings. All I did was watch the live webcams from Balibelly and Surfline. So perhaps I am not the one to raise the question, like the timid like kid in the back of the classroom, but was this swell over-hyped?
I don’t mean in quality. I phoned around the archipelago a little and friends told me it was as good as it gets. But some of the places they were surfing, if this swell was in fact an XXL or even XL, they wouldn’t be surfing, because it would over maxed in size.
Was the 2007 swell bigger? I’m not a meterologist with access to reams of data but I do have the simple NOAA wave height charts for comparison.
At any rate, what seems pretty clear to me is that in the history of Indonesia surfing never was a swell more hyped. All the frothing, you think rabies shots were in order. All the Frolickstanians who paddle out to overhead Serangan on their hypo-krypto popout knockouts and think they are charging were frantically scouring around for larger boards. Why, I sold a 7-3 glassed fin thruster that had been sitting in my attic for nearly two decades to a pleader.
I don’t know, brothers and sisters, but I’m scratching my head. To the old dinosaurs in Bali reading this post, didn’t it seem that in the pre-Internet days you just rocked up to Ulu or Nusa Dua and took what came? Am I wrong in thinking that this swell, while indeed an excellent and classic trade wind season swell, was something to be expected and hoped for at some point in the season? You know, typically terrific? Or am I pressing a few sour grapes because I’ve been drydocked?
At any rate, it’s an odd and unsettling feeling to be in Bali during a trade season swell. In previous years, I’d be outer island on my boat.