Words by Justis St. John
These days in the surf world, having your mind blown is a rare bird, but last year in the Mentawai, well... Part II of our seasonal retrospective in triplicate aims to entertain.
May had recorded an unprecedented 21 straight days of barrels out front and had even the oldest Indo sea dogs scratching their heads.
Seems like every couple days something nuts goes down. Either Dorian's packing a 70ft bomb, Kelly's pulling a 720 or Mark Mathews is pulling in behind Taj with a 25 pound camera. Prior to the internet if any one of these went down, the world would stop but these days, it hardly raises an eyebrow. This is especially true in Indonesia. Over the years, this area has pretty much seen it all... Slater and Irons trading solo barrels, JJ doing 10 foot airs over dry reef or endless pits in Taylor Steele's latest vid... It seems like on a daily basis, anything can happen and when the next 6 foot at 18 second swell started rounding the corner, no one thought much of it.
Ever since the swell gates busted in early May, the Mentawai had been running non-stop. May had recorded an unprecedented 21 straight days of barrels out front and had even the oldest Indo sea dogs scratching their heads. June in the Mentawai is typically the turning point in the season with the winds switching from North (rights) to predominately South (lefts). Up to this point, it's been a natural footers dream but as the next 218 degree swell started crossing the Indian Ocean, things were about to change.
For more from Kandui Resort, click HERE.
"We all know Ricardo as an amazing talent, but he is amazing human as well," says Kandui surf guide Nate Behl. "I first met him in Hawaii and have looked up to him ever since. Not only in the water, but his character on land as well. I hope this what heaven is like for him right now if not better. He got some crazy waves and was hands down dominating this swell."
"The waves are good everywhere all the time, but the most amazing part is every level surfer can be accommodated," tells Nate. "The hardest part of being a surf guide is making a group decision of where to go. You will have three or four spots firing at once within a short boat ride. One spot will be a little heavier while just around the corner will be the most playful perfect waves. It's hard for people to make up their mind whether they feel like going right, left, getting a beating, or just cruising."
"The swell was getting bigger with every set and it was as good as Kandui gets," explains part-owner and full-time surf guide at Kandui, All Day Ray Willcoxen. "I don't froth for that wave, but even I was waxing up my board. Then the biggest set I've ever seen there rolled through with no takers, dredging on the inside next to our Catamaran like it was going to suck the coral off the reef. As the last wave rolled under our boat leaving the chaos of churning whitewash and mandatory yard sale, I only had one thought: #!@% that!"
You can find Part I of the Season of Rapture HERE.