‘In Search of Waves’.
It was early October 2016 and the search started sat in the canteen of the Eden Project (St Austell, Cornwall) when myself and course mate Luke sat, sipped on smoothies and spoke about the possibility of going to watch and photograph the Quiksilver Pro France. A world class surfing contest hosted in the beautiful setting of Hossegor in the sunny South of France. One of the listed locations where all the best surfers in the world annually meet and compete.
What started as just joking and chat quickly became an actual plan. In the heat of excitement we looked up flights and somewhere to stay. Our course mates chuckled knowing that our student wallets would take a beating. Our lecturers were keen for us to gain some content as well as experience and the heads up was given to us.
With the nature of surf contests, a window of dates is given for the contest to run. You can’t surf without any waves. With waves at a break like’ La Graviere’ its expected to run a contest in the best conditions and not much less. Knowing this we checked swell charts and gave ourselves two days in France to secure waves. Fingers crossed.
We would travel to the South of France two weeks later.
Day of travel, the Quiksilver Pro ran finals day. Winner Hawaiian ‘Keanu Asing’ congratulated. We are on the train going past Plymouth. Not in France. Not happy.
A train journey, a flight, a train journey and a taxi ride later we arrive at the intended french coastline. If you do not speak french, as like us two, a french train station is a linguistic nightmare. ‘Cauchemar’.
Upon arrival the swell was up and there was waves. No contest but for sure there was content to be had. With a baggage allowance of camera gear and surfboard to suit we headed to the coastline. The beach breaks delivered and so did the locals as well as several professional surfers still hanging around for waves. Could not stop Luke from paddling out into a tasty lineup.
48 hours of waves, photographs, wine and pastries and a now heavily bruised student overdraft and it was time to head back to Cornwall.
We missed out on what we intended for but we still ended up scoring. We had a hectic two days and a two days to remember it was.
Check out some of Luke’s work // http://www.lukelaneprokopiou.com/