Ethan does Fiji

Ethan does Fiji

I’ve been in Fiji for just under a month and seen 3 solid swells during this time, two of which were pretty incredible with long period energy and plenty of power. One which didn’t quite live up to its potential but by traditional standards was still pretty bloody good.

During this time I’ve seen a steady increase of big names visiting the island chain which is a little out of the norm, so too is the relentless swell that September and October has been providing in the South Pacific.

As I write this on the plane back to Australia,  Cloudbreak and Restaurants is still pumping – will be for a few more days and another swell next week is lined up nicely about to enter their swell window.

Fiji is well and truly on the radar of professional surfers once again, from Jack, Joao and Kai Lenny a few weeks ago, to Ethan Ewing, this week’s big name in the line-up.

Having visited Fiji only 3 times previously Ethan explains his reasoning behind the visit, to surf big hollow lefts – a far cry from his hometown of North Stradbroke Islands sand bottomed waves. Ethan is visiting with fellow North Stradbroke Islanders, Bede Durbidge and his brother, Curt, who in addition to Bede is no slouch at surfing either.

Bede, having surfed on the WCT for 13 seasons provides inside knowledge on the area, where to sit at Restaurants, the best waves to look out for at Cloudy and keeps the froth factor alive whenever a crazy wave thunders along the reef at Cloudbreak.

Ethan took to the water immediately making his presence known, dissecting lips on triple overhead waves with his trademark smooth backhand flow. His prowess under the lip also made apparent with some of the best backhand barrel riding I’ve ever seen out there, ducking and weaving under the lip and then putting on the e-brake at the end to maximise that last little bit of tube time.

It’s apparent that he’s confident, fit and ready to match it with the very best tube riders on tour in any conditions. His back injury last season seemingly not a factor in any of the waves decisions made out there in some pretty trialling conditions.

In addition to his incredible style he is also a humble great human. Going out of his way to chat with the guests on Namotu island and an ole photographer like me.

Vinaka Vakalevu Ethan and we can’t wait to see you on tour this year and of course here in Fiji.

Info For Photos:

Ethan shortly before a clean-up set which saw a disorientated surfer climb onto his board thinking it was his own in the impact zone.

Namotu Lifeguard Eden Hage paddled this one via a second ledge roll in – one of the craziest moments of the swell.

Ben Wilson can do it all, there aren’t many more comfortable in the Cloudy lineup on a surfboard or kite than him.

Notable mentions of the swell include – Jo Jo Roper, Lawrie Towner, Taj Burrow, Ben Wilson and a host of other chargers.

According to many Lawrie got a one of the longest barrels of the swell standing tall after a critical air drop in. Callum Robson a few waves after did the same unfortunately coming unglued and copping a few stitches to the head.