Looking for a digital copy of our November 2013 issue? Find it here.
Taylor Knox got shotgun and Dane Reynolds always rode bitch. Why? Because that's how the first car ride of the trip was arranged and, as Dane put it, "Once the seating in the car is established, you can't change it." Craig Anderson was the first to aim the air conditioning vents away from himself and Noa Deane's giant legs were always falling asleep. These are the pointless things I learned through observation on a recent trip to Mexico with the aforementioned characters. Through listening, I learned much more.
People love to talk in cars. You can talk shit, talk shop or talk story and somehow it all seems to flow naturally when you're on the road. The hum of the engine and the passing scenery are conducive to conversation like a campfire, or booze, and everything from board design to style to hitting someone with a shoe can be turned into subject matter almost as important as the destination itself. Almost. You're still in the car to go surfing.
Taylor and Dane came together on this trip in part because of something Dane mentioned last year during a SURFING editorial trip in Nova Scotia. "It seems like people always call guys power surfers just because they don't do airs," he said during a long drive, and we went on to discuss how that definition might be flawed. Couldn't turns be brittle and airs powerful, and vice versa? Of course. And with that in mind, we started working on a project with Taylor, one of the most classically powerful surfers ever, and Dane, a perfect representation of new power. How Craig and Noa came to join the party was circumstantial, but welcomed, as they added variety and fun both in the water and during those long car rides.
We drove a lot in Mexico and so we talked a lot, too. Driving past the half-built buildings, Taylor explained how much fun he's having trying airs since retiring from the tour. His eyes lit up. Watching a pack of skinny dogs scurry off the road, Dane remembered the boat trip he did with Taylor, Andy Irons and a handful of his heroes, and how they bonded over Will Ferrell and Vince Vaughn. Meanwhile, in the car behind them, Noa and Craig discussed the merits of being "a real man" and whether or not a three-minute Web clip had any real clout in the surf world. These conversations and many more begin on Pg. 72.
These car rides were like any other you'd experience on a surf trip. Our knees bumped up against each other and we tried to find an English radio station. We stared out the windows. We ate, we drank and we started to smell. It was too hot; then it was too cold. It was loud with laughter and then silent with sleep. We were not there to sit in a car but it was the medium that delivered us to good waves, so we made the best of it. And consequently, the best of it made this issue. —Taylor Paul
Inside this Issue
Pg. 72 Conversation No. 1: Dane Reynolds // Taylor Knox
They are both off tour. They are both powerful. They are both surfing icons for different reasons. It's because of these similarities and disparities that we paired the two together for a couple of trips down Mexico way. Listen in as your idols discuss power surfing, competition, equipment, fame and why they're not really idols — just people.
Pg. 88 Conversation No. 2: Noa Deane
As we get older we're often encouraged to "man up" or "be a man" or any other cliché command designed to get us to mature. But maybe growing up is overrated. Noa Deane, Australia's hottest thing since meat pie, shows us why a better option might be to stay forever young.
Pg. 100 Conversation No. 3: Craig Anderson
The Slow Dance is over and Craig's legs are tired. So, what now? We shake Ando's magic 8-ball and learn that most signs point to yes for some bigger surf and European backpacking. But as for a three-minute Web clip surfacing anytime soon? Outlook not so good.