A collection of 4 Aussies and a Kiwi got together at short notice to sample some of the waves on offer in the Lombok / Sumbawa area, living aboard the traditional style 60 foot boat Ria Wisata. Being towards the end of the wet season we knew that the waves weren’t going to be huge, but we hoped we would be treated to some quality waves in the 3-6 foot range- and that’s exactly what we got!!
We got off to a slow start however, with Lembongan a marginal 3 foot and dropping. Desert Point on the first morning was, well, piss poor. Visions of a point break firing at 6-8 foot were soon replaced with the reality of 2-3 foot sectioning semi onshore crap. We got wet anyway (we could always say we surfed it- and if asked we could bullshit!!). It wasn’t hard to make the decision to up anchor and move to a spot further along the coast of Lombok that picked up more swell. We were still pissed off when we arrived at the new break, which when viewed from the seaward side of the line up looked small too. Matt and I were taken in to the zone in the runabout, and got instant ‘chubbies’ when we saw the perfect 5 foot right handers winding along the reef and into the channel. This is why we came on the boat trip, perfect waves, and nobody else in the water. Soon Troy, Ben and Snappa joined us for a pumping session, so good that we decided to anchor for the night, and have another go in the morning.
The morning session was unreal, a light morning offshore, with a consistent 4-5 foot swell- as many waves as you wanted. Some shots were taken from the channel on one of those disposable cameras- even Bennie looked alright!! The boys had certainly perked up, with 2 really good sessions under our belts. During the post match review, another charter boat rounded the headland, carrying a cargo of Kamikazi’s, so we once again pulled the pick and headed east- thinking we should get another sesh before dark After 3 hours motoring we pulled into a bay that featured a right hand bombie, an inside right, and an outside leftÖspoilt for choice, we opted for the outside right that was devoid of surfers. The bombie was breaking at 6 foot, and it seemed to enjoy breaking wide and clubbing the boys. Feeling under gunned, we moved in to the next section that was more predictable, and pigged out!
The next morning we decided upon the spot described in our travel book as “a fun right hander in the middle of the bay”. Shit, any more fun and I would have pissed me boardies. The wave was quite hollow on the low tide, but as it filled in, it became the most whackable, mechanical right I’ve ever surfed. Once again, it was just our crew in the waterÖ We were only half way through our trip, and were unanimous that if we didn’t get another wave, it would have been worth it.
A real ambition for all of us was to surf Sumbawa, in particular Scar Reef. We pulled into the bay and saw 3 other charter boats already there, the reef at 3-4 feet and sectioning. After having surfed 4 or 5 hours already that day we were shagged, (not too shagged to abuse the lid riders as they went passed) and all gave it a miss (except Matt), and waited for the early to check it again. As it turned out, it was smaller, and we missed surfing this legendary spot- it looks like it needs a lot of swell to fire it up. Next stop Yo Yo’s, a couple of hours away. The set of the day rolled in just as we were getting dropped off in the dinghy. We turned around to see a 6 foot set towering over the overloaded dinghy- some video footage of the rats jumping ship would have picked up a prize for the world’s funniest video!! Boards and bodies from arsehole to breakfast!!! The boatman Made made a hasty retreat to the mother ship to clean his now full boardiesÖ
The trip back along the coast of Lombok provided more uncrowded waves. Eventually we arrived back at Desert Point and had it OK at 3-4 foot. Motoring in to the break we were passed by a small fishing boat, carrying a cargo of 3 rather large sharks- faarrkk!! We surfed anyway, and were joined in the line up by some other guys from boats anchored in the bay.
3 more hours motoring and we were back at our starting point Nusa Lembongan. None of us felt like facing Kuta on Bali, so we arranged to stay on Lembongan for another 3 days, surfing pumping waves at Shipwrecks.
All together we were away for 10 days, and got shitloads of quality, uncrowded waves. The crew of 6 Balo’s looked after us really well, cooking thousands of jaffles (toasted sandwiches), fried rice, noodles, fresh fish, and fresh chooks (that came along for half the ride!). They were great guys, and fun to be around. As for the surfers; Matt, Ben, Snap, Troy and me, we all got on great- no hassles in the water or out. The ‘debrief’ in Kuta turned out to be a huge one, with the crew pissed in no time and oggling the fairer sex with drool running down chins. Snap and Troy were arranging a trip to G Land, Matt and Ben were talking about doing the boat trip again, and I had to get home to NZ to buy a cheap season ticket for the snow.
Thanks to Jim from Baliwaves.com for arranging the trip, and hooking up the crew. Jim, you’ve got the place wired. Let me know when you need an assistant- me carry board???