While the rest of Cape Town shut down Sunday morning thanks to the huge cycle race, I managed to beat the first peloton and get through for the dawnie before the roads were closed. The swell wasn’t huge – five foot at most on some of the bigger sets early on – but it was worth the journey and for the entire morning there was a blissful feeling that with the roads closed there would be no carloads of surfers rocking up to colonize the peak.
I had a new 5′.4″ twin keel fish (pictured here) that I’d just finished and was apprehensive that it would be a bit small for me because I’m not used to surfing anything under 6′.0″. But the fish shape just continues to enthrall and surprise. The board was so fast and zippy and I had a great session, apart from a few take offs on the bigger sets where I had to eject at the top of the wave. The board bottom-turned beautifully and had real snap under the lip and in hitting any kind of lip froth. Plus it seemed to maintain such a good level of speed, even through the flat sections, that it was possible to do some fun turns in parts of the wave that one would usually consider dead. I can’t wait to get on it again.
I’ve now come full circle on my fish shapes. Initially I started out with very parallel rails and low rocker, which worked great, but then I started pinching the tail and adding more rocker because I wanted to surf them in bigger and steeper waves. This paid off and its a great feeling surfing a solid bowl on a twin keel fish. On one board I even narrowed the nose considerably and was rewarded by being able to backdoor a solid six-footer and weave through the barrel. So far I’ve found the fish shape to have such great potential and it can be adapted to suit the conditions, but for small surf, judging by Sunday’s fun, I’ve found the shape that’s going to be a template for many boards to come.