Surfing Vancouver Island  

East Coast - West Coast : it's a Journey by Luke Acker - Photos: Eric Neff  


[slideshow:click here to see images full size / or hit any thumbnail to resize images to fit your screen] keyboard shortcuts: arrows = Fwd & Back | F11 = full screen

East Coast - West Coast:it's a Journey by Luke Acker - Photo: Eric Neff Photography
 

Addicts have perverse priorities. We order our lives around the illogical pursuit of whatever wholly unproductive task we choose. We are beyond having to explain ourselves. We just do what we need to.

East Coast - West Coast:it's a Journey by Luke Acker - Photo: Eric Neff Photography
 

And at some point, every committed surfer will realize that this is their reality; That their decisions are beyond control-That they are addicts. Waves will inevitably become the focal point of all life planning- as it happened with me. On Aug 31 2010 I left a career, friends -a life. I packed all relevant worldly possessions into a small car and drove from Nova Scotia, to come here, to BC.

East Coast - West Coast:it's a Journey by Luke Acker - Photo: Eric Neff Photography
 

The east taught me how to surf. Its miles of cobblestone points were my classroom. Waves sent tauntingly from the frigid North Atlantic lit up my coastline. Hurricanes were the disciplinarian; dolling out punishment and reward. But it was the severe cold that kept sessions honest. In short-The learning curve was steep.

Here I continue to learn. Iím learning about west coast rhythms. To me, Juan de Fucas rhythm is foreign. It is slow. Sessions lack a sense of urgency. People wait- on the shore, in their tents- they wait for their moment to surf. They take in their amazing surroundings. West-Canadians appreciate the beauty of their playground. There is no rush.

This is contrasted by a more dine-and-dash mentality out east. Perhaps its because of the cold back home. Its tough to relax when its -25*c. Or maybe its because the surf is only ever a 30 minute drive away. Most often a surf is a quick dip before youíre probably late for work. Here each surf is a mission- Each an endeavor; complete with bears (Apparently). And you donít surf before work here. You call in dead, then surf.

East Coast - West Coast:it's a Journey by Luke Acker - Photo: Eric Neff Photography
 

Other differences: Donít ever let anyone tell you kelp is normal. These thick, ropey messengers from the seafloor give off an eerie vibe. Kelp beds make the surfing arena feel alien. But wind chop is eaten by their lazy flow. And they are a glass factory. But F&*k me they are weird.

East Coast - West Coast:it's a Journey by Luke Acker - Photo: Eric Neff Photography
 

The waves are different here than NS, though not necessarily better. The primary differences are due to groundswell here, and windswell there. While waiting for a set in NS, you can typically see the wave coming about a km out. Here they tend evolve quickly from little bumps to head high and breaking in a matter of seconds.

Perhaps the most significant difference between Canadaís two coasts are the length of the swell windows. Weeks! You measure your swell windows in weeks here! East coasters think in terms of days sometimes even hours. Ö.Maybe thatís why no one here is in a rush.

East Coast - West Coast:it's a Journey by Luke Acker - Photo: Eric Neff Photography
 

However I came here searching for that punching pacific power, and I still havenít found it. Juans rhythm had something else in store for me. So far I have found the canvasses more playful than anything. I am still searching for something a little edgy.

In the mean-time reality is setting in: I left my home break. Now I am surf homeless. The search will continue for more critical set ups. I will probably piss off somebody when I find a hike-in spot. But I know they are out there. And Iím gonna surf em.

I donít have a choice.
Luke Acker
Photos: Eric Neff Photography

East Coast - West Coast:it's a Journey by Luke Acker - Photo: Eric Neff Photography
 


advertisement


 
 
 
 


 
 
 
 

advertisement


 
 
 
 


 
 
 
 

search CoastalBC.com


 
 
 
 

advertisement

coastalbc.com | site map | weather | classifieds | email

appropriate listings and links for businesses, organizations, and individuals are free.
Advertising on this website

thanks for visiting CoastalBC.com

Copyright © 1997-2017 CoastalBC.com. All rights reserved. | Terms of Use