Sometimes surf forecasts are unreliable. So when the sites suggested we were in for 12.5 ft clean swell you wait and see. And sometimes they get it right.
The bummer for us is that 12.5 ft swell, which translates to bigger wave faces, is way to big for us try hards. So we settle for watching those courageous enough to venture out, and using our iPhone apps to find beaches that remain open, so we cab frolic in the white water under the school master like gaze of the surf patrol.
This morning I got up and wandered along the breakwall walk behind our site and watched someone getting towed into 2.5 -3 times overhead breaks on the river mouth. Saw him get one, then get absolutely smashed by a set, dragged back close to 1/2 kilometre before the jet ski spotted him and sped to collect him. Back out to try again.
Yesterday we ventured to Sawtell for a swim before we realised that life guards had closed most beaches. We watched the clean monsters break, hundred of metres out, it was awe inspiring. I asked some locals where to look for the fool hardy and we found ourselves sitting on a grassy knoll watching 7 or 8 blokes trying to get a ride to remember. Very few got even close but every now and again our hearts would be in our mouths and some daring soul sat on the precipice of a water mountain and took the drop.
It was Heidi's birthday (25th actually but usually celebrated on the Boxing Day), and she was keen for a swim, so we drove up to Coffs Park Beach when we learned it was open. So much fun.
I'd heard about beaches draining before a tsunami, but I've never felt the surge like this when on a summer excursion to the seaside! Unfortunately, Maria is still recovering from her dislocated toe so had to watch, but the rest of us had a ball. There we are, standing in waist deep water (any deeper is unsafe), and the whole beach gets drained so you're standing on the sand. We stay put, then comes the walls of white foam from the waves that have broken, sometimes hundreds of metres out, and next thing we're up to our chests as the water surges the other way. The last couple of days is the only time when we've all body surfed on white water and felt like it was worth the effort.
The downside of this is that we'd much rather be trying to catch smaller waves on our boards. By the time the swell dies to ridable size Zac, Heidi and Rachel will be on a flight back to Melbourne. Hopefully when Zac comes back to join us at Port Macquarie a week or so later we'll we good to go. Fingers crossed.