So, you’re going on a surf trip. You're not quite sure what the waves are going to be like, but one thing is certain: you want to have a good time. Asher Pacey has spent the greater part of his life traveling the world as a professional surfer, but in recent years, he has rid himself of high-performance thrusters for a multitude of twin-fin surf craft, all in the name of smiling more than the rest. Here he explains his board essentials for having fun on your next excursion, which should always be the number-one objective, right?
I don't always expect to surf big waves, so small-wave boards and boards with a lot of volume are always on my radar. I think having smaller fishes for days that go flat are key. I tend to bring a 5'0″ and a 5'3″ with me everywhere. Actually, I won't go anywhere without 'em. It can be one-foot to a few feet overhead — you'll still be able to surf them.
Having enough foam is something I always consider, especially when traveling to waves that might have a flatter face. My 5'0″ and 5'3″ are both suited for waves like those that you'll find in Santa Barbara, and at pointbreaks in general, which I tend to enjoy surfing. Extra foam will ensure that you can glide over those flat sections and continue to have fun.
My standard shortboard is a 5'6″. It’s a more performance-type of twin with the option of dropping a trailer fin in it. I like to bring this, too. This board is a bit more knifey than my smaller twins, and is perfect for days when the waves are standing up and a lot steeper. You can do higher performance turns, but still have that twin-fin feel.
Besides smaller boards, I like to bring a step-up. For me, this is a 5'10″ twin fin. It's got quite a bit of volume in it, so it's essentially like riding a 6'1″ or something of that nature. For me, I don't feel like I need a lot of length at times, so I compensate with volume. This also makes paddling a lot easier.
Another factor that I usually consider is having a board with a solid glass job. If you are going somewhere where the waves are hollow, you don't want to risk breaking all of your boards. Having boards that are heavily glassed and durable proves to be much safer. This way you're not going to snap your boards as easily. When you're traveling somewhere that has heavier waves, a heavier board will also help you stick to the face of the wave much better.
A really big part of travel is meeting up with friends along the way and getting insight into surf breaks, what to ride, and what works. Sometimes these friends will have different boards that I haven't ridden. If a buddy has a board that works well at their local spot, then I'm always happy to give it a try. It's nice to have that other perspective.
After a long day of surfing, a cold beer at the local watering hole is always nice.
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