On Saturday 15th of November a downwind ocean race was held in East London, South Africa. One of the paddlers, Mark Feather, was lost at sea during the event and was later found deceased 40 km past the finish on Monday morning.
East London – The Dischem Automall Pete Marlin Surfski Race was rocked by the disappearance of one of the paddlers during the race on Saturday but with the help of the local community a huge search party was deployed in an attempt to locate Mark Feather who remains lost. However the search for him will continue.
Our sport is risky. Ideal conditions for us involve big waves and strong winds. And sometimes accidents happen. Yesterday, the Pete Marlin world series surfski race was held in East London, South Africa, and shit happened.
Chasing 3m breaking waves in 35kt gusts is the best fun you can have outside of tangled sheets – but gear failure can be a much bigger issue. You have to be mentally and physically prepared for things to go wrong…
Monday, 1st March, 2010 saw one of the strongest southeasters of the season hit Cape Town. Cape Point was registering an average of 40kt, gusting to 46kt. Roman Rock lighthouse showed an average of 39kt.
[Editor: although this story refers to the South African National Sea Rescue Institute, the points made apply wherever you are in the world!]On Christmas day, members from three NSRI stations: Yzerfontein, Melkbosstrand and Table Bay responded to reports of an abandoned surf ski found near Dassen Island.
Remounting your ski is an essential skill. Fall off in cold water offshore - you need to get back on that ski immediately before you get cold. Fall off in the surf zone - you need to get back on fast before the next set comes in.
And yet, how to remount is one of the commonest questions - especially from beginners. What's the "straddle" method? How does it differ from the "sidesaddle" method?