Taylor Steele rings in the final chapter of his next Sipping Jetstreams film in darkest Africa
By Nathan Myers
There’s no beer in the Sahara desert. In fact, there’s no fun at all. All twelve or so people living here are strict, non-boozing Muslims. They’re everyday squatting in the middle of 50,000 miles of nothing. Eating camel and donkey for breakfast. Sneaking antique assault rifles around the heavily-mined wastelands. And it’s all very un-New Yearsy.
I do not recommend hosting your party here.
I say this from experience. I’m writing this from the Sahara right now, completely non-hungover from our New Years un-celebration.
Bad ideas never sounded so good.
But this Saharan New Years celebration is hardly the first questionable decision a solid swell has inspired in for filmmaker Taylor Steele. Purple blobs give him tunnel vision. Make him think irrationally. Holidays get liquidated into frequent flier miles. And nothing else seems to matter. So when this latest post-Christmas cold front sent a solid swell spinning toward western Africa, he scrambled a crew for an emergency strike on a remote stretch of nowhere. Screw New Years.
As the neon apple dropped in NYC, Marlon Gerber, Mikala Jones, SURFING photographer Jeff Flindt and Taylor Steele clinked canteens to toast yet another successful reckless decision.
Sahara is not an easy surf trip. Turn-ons include camel kebabs, landmine leftovers and long hikes in the desert. Weather: the moment you’re not blazing hot, you’re freezing cold. Politics: four different nations maintain half-hearted hostilities over this barren wasteland. And none of them surf. Waves: totally empty. If you run across another surfer out here, you feel like kissing him on the lips…then moving on to your own perfect pointbreak. Don’t worry…it’s not likely to happen.
Stay tuned for the full Sahara story in SURFING Magazine. Castles in the Sky, Steele’s next installment in the Sipping Jetstreams trilogy and the reason for this adventure, will be hitting theaters this June 2010. The first premiers will not be held in the Sahara.