Christian Wach’s Australian Travel Blog, Part 2
We had a long forty-five days ahead of us. The points were flat for the first week but we still managed to have really fun surfs everyday along the beaches. Sunshine beach was always so fun for a shorty. For the first week George didn’t surf too much because of a broken wrist he acquired two days before going on the trip. Instead, he filmed everything for a movie he is working on. The good thing was by the time he was capable of surfing, the waves turned on and we surfed our brains out along the points in Noosa. It couldn’t have been a better introduction. Those guys were ecstatic to surf such warm, machine-like waves. Kameron and George primarily ride long, heavy single fins and are used to places like San Onofre. First point Noosa suited their everyday riders, which made them freak out even more.
It was my fifth year in a row visiting Australia for the Noosa Festival and I have to say, it was the best year by far. My friends and I experienced flawless surf almost the entire trip. The waves for the contest couldn’t have been better for the finals. We also threw one of the most fun parties I’ve ever been to for Kameron’s twentieth birthday: the “Who Is Kameron Brown Party,” we called it. Each of us drew our own little flyers to hand out. We had a bunch of photocopies made and handed them out to our friends and as many cute girls we could find down at the beach. Three amazing DJs played — George being one of them with the final set. Everyone was jumping in the pool and dancing. Crazy night. There were babes everywhere. Another awesome part of the trip was spending time with Tom Wegener and Matt Williams — the guys responsible for starting the alaia craze.
Due to the smaller conditions toward the beginning of the event, I had an upper hand on my ten-footer, noseriding my way through each heat. I knew I’d have much better chances if the waves stayed small, plus I wanted to ride my CJ Nelson Aviso Model, which is ideal for noseriding.
It was ironic how Harrison and I discussed making both the men’s pro and the noseriding finals prior to the event. We thought it would be so epic if it actually happened. We never thought it really would occur. I had never made it past the quarters and I was just excited to be in the semis. When Harrison saw that the judges were giving me the scores needed to advance — on my single fin, no less — he opted for the same equipment and rode his log all the way up until the final. The last horn of the semis blew and we knew our prediction had come true. The next day we found ourselves sitting at first point with two other guys out in two separate professional finals. And it was going off. As competitors and best friends, we both succeeded, which I thought was pretty amazing.
Although I placed third and Harrison placed fourth in the men’s pro final, it had still been a really fun heat. We also had the noseriding final to look forward to. Harrison had a new noserider in the glass shop that he wasn’t even sure would be done, but with the extra hard work of Tully at Laguna Bay Surfboards, it was ready for tip-time by the final day. When our noseriding heat rolled around, it was seriously pumping.
Paddling out we were all freaking out on how gorgeous the conditions were. I don’t think it could have been any better. I’ll never forget how surreal it was. It didn’t even feel like a heat, just an epic freesurf with my best friends: Harrison Roach, Ezra Norris and Trent Dickey. It ended up being my all-time favorite heat, not because I won, but because it was just so incredibly fun. I was actually a little nervous Harrison would win, because every time I paddled back out, he was planting himself on the nose with both feet square in perfect hang-ten form. Turns out he got fourth, but I don’t think it mattered to him because that was a heat to remember for life.
Read Part 1 of Christian’s Australian travels here.