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    Hunting Waves and Wind – Kohl, Slezak & Fletch Check in from Chile

    Farias_waves

    Patagonia ambassadors Kohl Christnesen, Jason Slezak and Fletcher Chouinard are down in Chile right now hoping to score south swell and good wind for kiteboarding. Kohl just called in with a surf report:

    Audio_graphic_20pxListen to Kohl Christensen Chile Phone Report
    (mp3 - right-click to download)

    Farias_the_crew

    We're hoping to hear back from the boys as the swell fills in. If you're a regular reader, you'll remember what happened the last time Kohl lured Fletch down to Chile.

    Update: Already received a new photo of Kohl getting ready to go kite. Follow @fcdsurfboards on Twitter and Instagram for more pics as they come in.

    [Photos by Rodrigo Farias Moreno (@fariasmoreno)]


    Wwoofing and Waves in New South Wales

    by Patch Wilson

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    Spending a few months in Oz this year, I was looking for a way to not blow my budget. I didn’t want to spend every waking moment living out the back of my van, constantly scrimping and saving. I wanted to surf as much as possible on one of the best coastlines for waves in the world.

    Wwoofing (Willing Workers On Organic Farms) seemed like a good way to get around this problem, the idea being that you work a few hours a day in return for your food and accommodation. It just so happens there are some great spots for doing this all over Australia, especially in New South Wales. You can pretty much pick an area with good waves on the coast and then get in touch with your Wwoofing host, line it up and off you go.

    [Above: Cylindrical left. All photos: Patch Wilson]

    Continue reading "Wwoofing and Waves in New South Wales" »

    A Pacific Epiphany – An Excerpt from “Crossings”

    by Michael Kew

    From “Jewel of Palm and Rain,” Chapter 26

    It was California's autumn equinox, with its earthy browns and yellows, its wind and its chill, on the cusp of solitude, that had sent me away. A shirtless late-afternoon bike ride across the farm, down the leafy corridor of Rincon Creek and out to the beach afforded goose bumps from a wan sun, with glassy, head-high waves wrapping around the famed point of Rincoñada del Mar.

    Kew_1
    [This? Photo: Michael Kew]

    The air was clear, the sky vast and blue. In the distance were the shadowy hills and gullies of the islands Santa Rosa and Santa Cruz; even Anacapa looked warmly near and familiar. In time, rain would fall there and here, and the beach sand would darken—the tourists were gone—but today, under the auspices of gulls, autumn had arrived. This was Rincon in late October, a polyglot pointbreak returned to itself, to the locals and the afternoon low tides, the clean swells and sunburned eyes, squinting into the glare of a setting sun.

    Continue reading "A Pacific Epiphany – An Excerpt from “Crossings”" »

    Stand Up Paddling the Rivers of Australia with Zeb Walsh and Adam Colton

    Today we're featuring two rivers in Australia and two takes on stand up paddleboarding. First we'll hear about Zeb Walsh's (Patagonia Australia) one-day training run down the icy waters of the Snowy River. Then, Adam Colton (Long Treks on Skate Decks) takes us on a 30-day trip down the Murray.

    A Man In Snowy River 

    by Patagonia Australia & Zeb Walsh

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    He was hard and tough and wiry — just the sort that won’t say die
    There was courage in his quick impatient tread;
    And he bore the badge of gameness in his bright and fiery eye,
    And the proud and lofty carriage of his head.

    Originating from the high mountain peak of Kosciuszko, and draining down through the Eastern Slopes, The Snowy River winds 352 KM before reaching the Bass Strait.

    In far East Gippsland, an athletic physique approaches the shores, lead by an ambitious spirit and determination. His kind eyes intercept the flowing waters. This land is a part of Zeb’s birthright and what better way to connect with the river than to follow its flow. Setting out on a stand-up, paddling from Orbost, 20km downstream but into a nasty head wind, all the way to Marlo.

    Continue reading "Stand Up Paddling the Rivers of Australia with Zeb Walsh and Adam Colton" »

    Underway - An Excerpt from "The Voyage of the Cormorant" by Christian Beamish

    by Christian Beamish

    Voyage_of_the_Cormorant_coverPatagonia Books is proud to announce our latest release: Christian Beamish’s first book The Voyage of the Cormorant, which tells of his journey down the Pacific coast of Baja in an 18-foot open boat he built himself. The book includes maps and is illustrated by Ken Perkins. Below is an excerpt:

    From Chapter 3 – Underway

    A full moon rose over the arroyos, the desert held a pinkish glow, and stars shone down like a compliment in a million points of light all across the water. I sailed along, swaddled against the cold in a parka and outer shell, drifting in my thoughts deep into the night. Eventually, the wind fell away, and the ocean settled into a broad, glassy sheet. I smelled the clean desert scrub on the suddenly warmer air. The lines and sails and my outer jacket seemed to crackle in the dryness.

    I knew that this was all the warning I would get.

    Lashing the tiller in place with a bungee, I scrambled forward and dropped the main sail. Not one minute later, I saw and heard the wind line across the water behind, roaring down and tearing at the surface like a swarm of locust: the dreaded Norte. People call it the devil wind because of the fires it breathes to life and, I suppose, for the madness too. It is a terrible, mindless thing.

    Continue reading "Underway - An Excerpt from "The Voyage of the Cormorant" by Christian Beamish" »

    Hitching to Oz

    by Patch Wilson

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    Recently, I had the opportunity to hitch a ride from Indonesia to Australia on a sailing yacht my friend owns. I had been working at home for a good while, and was starting to get itchy feet, and this seemed like the perfect way to get back on the road and go exploring again.

    So I tied up the loose ends at home and flew from the UK out to Bali and timed it perfectly to walk into the first solid swell of the year – pumping Sanur and Bukit Peninsula. I spent three weeks in Bali, surfing all over the place and getting back into the rhythm, and scored really fun waves before it was time for me to go and meet up with the boat.

    [Above: Getting back into the rhythm in Bali. All photos by Patch Wilson.]

    Continue reading "Hitching to Oz" »

    Trevor Gordon’s Artful Life

    by Michael Kew

    Natural_light

    Patagonia Surf ambassador Trevor Gordon, 22, is not just a guy who, in the words of Dan Malloy, “surfs just like Curren.” Here we take a closer look at Trevor’s land-based talents.

    Michael Kew: How would you describe your art?
    Trevor Gordon: A bit folksy. Colorful, textured, simple. I try to paint or draw people in ordinary moments and natural situations, like a man sitting on a porch, playing guitar, or a lady stoking a campfire.

    What's your process like when you create art? Do you ever sketch stuff and then make it, or do you work more spontaneously and build as you go? How does it happen for you?
    I usually start painting spontaneously. Sometimes I’ll wake up in the night and have to start a painting so I don’t forget it by morning. Other times I will be listening to a song and something will pop into my head, and if I can, I will start painting something right then. More often than not, I’ll end up painting over the original idea, but it’s the initial moment of starting the painting that is hardest. My style is very quick — I can’t stand waiting for the paint to dry or washing the brushes, so I end up painting with my fingers on top of wet paint. I guess that can add to it, sometimes, but it can also screw it up.

    Continue reading "Trevor Gordon’s Artful Life" »

    Dancing with Nature

    By Tony Butt

    Tony butt_close to Nature

    “We still talk in terms of conquest. We still haven’t become mature enough to think of ourselves as only a tiny part of a vast and incredible universe. Man’s attitude toward nature is today critically important simply because we have now acquired a fateful power to alter and destroy Nature. But man is a part of nature, and his war against nature is inevitably a war against himself. Now, I truly believe, that we in this generation, must come to terms with nature, and I think we’re challenged as mankind has never been challenged before to prove our maturity and our mastery, not of nature, but of ourselves.”

    – Rachel Carson (1907-1964)

    Before Charles Darwin came along, it was ‘us’ and the ‘animals’. Now, over a century and a half later, most of us acknowledge that we are actually just another species of animal, with as much right to exist as chimpanzees, cats and dogs, mice and insects. The planet doesn’t just belong to us, it belongs to them as well.

    [Above: The author dances with Nature. Photo: Tony Butt Collection]

    Continue reading "Dancing with Nature" »

    Surfilm Festibal 10 Kicks Off May 31 in San Sebastián, Spain

    by Patagonia Surf Europe

    Poster2012Patagonia is proud to support another year of the Surfilm Festibal in Donostia - San Sebastián, Spain. This year is particularly special because the world’s first surf film festival celebrates its 10th anniversary.

    Patagonia ambassador Keith Malloy will be on hand to present Come Hell or High Water and participate in a really unique workshop. Extended Vision: Moving Image Workshops starts on June 6th and will allow up-and-comers to work hand in hand with some of the sport’s best filmmakers.

    Continue reading "Surfilm Festibal 10 Kicks Off May 31 in San Sebastián, Spain" »

    Isles of Idyll — An Excerpt from “Crossings”

    by Michael Kew

    Kew_1

    From “Coral Refuge, Ocean Deep,” Chapter 8

    This atoll is on the way to nowhere except the crossroads of romance and adventure. Après-surf and brunch, Yvon and I board the skiff and buzz into close range; Francois kills the motor. Adrift within the lagoon’s turquoise comfort, far from the roily pass and its fish traps, a broad, sandy flat is declared quintessential bonefish domain. Nearby, a few decayed fishing shacks face dense coconut palms—Polynesia’s most important tree—hinting a wistful regard to overfishing and a once-seemingly endless bounty.

    “Well, there’s no fish here compared to…I mean, you can go all day trolling out there and you don’t catch a fish sometimes,” Yvon says, absorbing the scene. “If you were at a place like Christmas Island or some of the less-inhabited places—or some places that haven’t been fished out—you can’t go a quarter-mile without hooking up with something. There’s still some pelagic fish here and stuff, but it’s pretty well fished-out, especially the closer you get to Tahiti.”

    Exiting the skiff, we infiltrate with fly rods, cameras, and dim expectancy. Yvon wades and searches, casting over the sand and coral knobs.

    [Above: Yvon Chouinard preps for a day of bonefishing. Photo: Michael Kew]

    Continue reading "Isles of Idyll — An Excerpt from “Crossings”" »

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