Latest Surfski News

Monday, 22 March 2021 10:35
[Given a recent encounter with bluebottles here in Cape Town, South Africa, this article from 2007 is hereby recycled as being very relevant!] On a 2007 "Miller's Run" on singles in a big South-Easter, from Miller's Point to Fish Hoek, about 20 minutes into the paddle, my paddling partner Gavin Gottschalk and I were stung by bluebottles.
Read more...
Monday, 22 March 2021 10:35
[Given a recent encounter with bluebottles here in Cape Town, South Africa, this article from 2007 is hereby recycled as being very relevant!] On a 2007 "Miller's Run" on singles in a big South-Easter, from Miller's Point to Fish Hoek, about 20 minutes into the paddle, my paddling partner Gavin Gottschalk and I were stung by bluebottles.
Read more...
Tuesday, 16 March 2021 13:54
It’s not easy to catch a rolling, runaway single ski in 30kt of gusting wind – and as they attempted to grab it, Alex and his doubles partner lost their balance and fell into the water. By the time they’d remounted, the single ski was gone – blown away by the strengthening near-gale. They turned and paddled back upwind to find their buddy.
Read more...
Tuesday, 16 March 2021 13:54
It’s not easy to catch a rolling, runaway single ski in 30kt of gusting wind – and as they attempted to grab it, Alex and his doubles partner lost their balance and fell into the water. By the time they’d remounted, the single ski was gone – blown away by the strengthening near-gale. They turned and paddled back upwind to find their buddy.
Read more...
Wednesday, 03 March 2021 12:08
Accident reports are easy to write when the story ends happily, but this one didn’t and it’s with a very heavy heart that I’m writing this, with a view to learning what we can from it.
Read more...
Wednesday, 03 March 2021 12:08
Accident reports are easy to write when the story ends happily, but this one didn’t and it’s with a very heavy heart that I’m writing this, with a view to learning what we can from it.
Read more...
Wednesday, 15 July 2020 09:13
When the NSRI found Duncan MacDonald, he was approximately 6km off Smitswinkel Bay, drifting rapidly further offshore. Gale-force squalls whipped sheets of spray off the waves, reducing visibility almost to nothing. What Happened? Given the small size of the surfski community, there’s always intense interest whenever there’s a rescue. What happened? What did they do wrong? What can we learn from it? Clearly there are lessons to be learnt from any mishap – so here’s a description of what happened, shared with the permission and cooperation of the folks involved in the hope that we might all learn from this…
Wednesday, 15 July 2020 09:13
When the NSRI found Duncan MacDonald, he was approximately 6km off Smitswinkel Bay, drifting rapidly further offshore. Gale-force squalls whipped sheets of spray off the waves, reducing visibility almost to nothing. What Happened? Given the small size of the surfski community, there’s always intense interest whenever there’s a rescue. What happened? What did they do wrong? What can we learn from it? Clearly there are lessons to be learnt from any mishap – so here’s a description of what happened, shared with the permission and cooperation of the folks involved in the hope that we might all learn from this…
Friday, 24 April 2020 11:41
Durban – As the continued coronavirus lockdown grips the country, Canoeing South Africa will host a 24 hour Canoeing4COVID-19 event this weekend as a way to raise funds for members of the broader paddling community that have been badly affected by the lockdown.
Read more...
Friday, 24 April 2020 11:41
Durban – As the continued coronavirus lockdown grips the country, Canoeing South Africa will host a 24 hour Canoeing4COVID-19 event this weekend as a way to raise funds for members of the broader paddling community that have been badly affected by the lockdown.
Read more...
Wednesday, 11 March 2020 14:35
“Hey, Rob! Help!” The shouts penetrated the sound of the howling wind and crashing waves – and even through the noise it was obvious from the tone of his voice that something was seriously wrong. I turned and headed back upwind.
Read more...
Wednesday, 11 March 2020 14:35
“Hey, Rob! Help!” The shouts penetrated the sound of the howling wind and crashing waves – and even through the noise it was obvious from the tone of his voice that something was seriously wrong. I turned and headed back upwind.
Read more...
Tuesday, 03 March 2020 14:43
Many paddlers use Personal Locator Beacons, or tracker apps like SafeTrx on their mobile phones. But handheld VHF radios are also a great choice to consider – especially when they’re DSC-capable like the Standard Horizon HX870E.
Read more...
Tuesday, 03 March 2020 14:43
Many paddlers use Personal Locator Beacons, or tracker apps like SafeTrx on their mobile phones. But handheld VHF radios are also a great choice to consider – especially when they’re DSC-capable like the Standard Horizon HX870E.
Read more...
Monday, 24 February 2020 12:01
I finally got my hands on a demo Fennix Swordfish S this weekend and did two Miller's Runs in succession to see if I could feel any difference in handling between the 2018 Swordfish S and the new Fennix model.  Conditions were challenging: False Bay was covered in whitecaps, whipped by a combination of a 25-30kt southeaster and small, confused seas.  The result?  I definitely want to spend more time in this boat.
Read more...

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getting started

Saturday, 09 May 2009 06:06 | Category : Tips & Techniques

If Bill Gates and Hugh Hefner were out shopping for a ski together, they'd pick the same one as Wesley Echols. Well, maybe not, but when it comes to boats, Echols has the head of the technician and the soul of a playboy: at least he goes through skis the way Hef does bunnies.

Sunday, 18 January 2009 03:59 | Category : Tips & Techniques

We're constantly asked why there isn't a "How to start Surfski" DVD on the market.  Well now there is one - and it's been put together by one of the best surfski paddlers and coaches in the world: South African Dawid Mocke.

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Saturday, 02 June 2007 15:47 | Category : Tips & Techniques

ImageRemounting 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? 

Here are some answers...

Wednesday, 13 September 2006 20:51 | Category : Tips & Techniques

ImageAll good things are built from a solid base, and this is no truer than in our world of canoeing. The basics of the forward stroke are the most important part of a good technique because all the other elements fall easily into place after this. And a good technique not only allows you to paddle farther and faster with less effort, but makes you safer in the water and prevents injuries.

 

Friday, 02 December 2005 13:48 | Category : Tips & Techniques
This is the third part of our Getting Started series. The earlier articles dealt with the basics of surf ski equipment and safety.

It's time to get on the water...
Friday, 02 December 2005 13:45 | Category : Tips & Techniques
This, the second article in a series on Getting Started in Surf Ski, covers the basics of safety.

Future articles will go into more depth, and will discuss safety measures when paddling offshore, for example.
Friday, 02 December 2005 13:42 | Category : Tips & Techniques
This is the first in a series of articles about Getting Started in Surf Ski; it covers the basic equipment that you'll need and gives suggestions on how and where to find it.

Note that most shops that sell skis offer good advice to beginners; talk to them. Other sources of advice (and equipment) are SurfSkiSchool and newsgroups.
Friday, 02 December 2005 13:37 | Category : Tips & Techniques
(By Rob Mousley, with input from surf ski paddlers around the globe. Grateful thanks to all who contributed.)

For the purposes of this Getting Started Guide, we'll assume that you've never paddled before. We'll also assume that you can swim and that you can hold your breath and dive under water (if you paddle in waves, you'll need to be comfortable in and under the water!) You've seen skis on top of cars, you've seen them on the water; it looks like fun.

It IS fun - and by the time you're at the level where you're capable of paddling a downwind run in 30kts of wind, it doesn't get much more fun…

But how do you start?