FIND­ING A BAL­ANCE

CIARAN, THE ARTIST FOR­MERLY KNOWN AS PIXIE, IS ONE OF THOSE SURFERS THAT IF YOU'VE SURFED A WHILE YOU'VE PROB­A­BLY BUMPED INTO. WHETHER IT'S IN BUN­DO­RAN OR INDO. HE'S ONE OF THOSE GUYS THAT'S AL­WAYS MAN­AGED TO FIT WORK AROUND SURF­ING AS OP­POSED TO GIV­ING I

Carve - - CONTENTS - WORDS & PHOTOS IAN MITCHIN­SON

Ciaran Hares­nape is a fix­ture in the Bun­do­ran line-up and has been for a long time. Ian Mitchin­son quizzed him on get­ting the surf/work bal­ance right.

So Ciaran, How long have you been surf­ing and when did you move to Bun­do­ran?

I started surf­ing in Bun­do­ran when I was around 12-years old whilst vis­it­ing my mum's fam­ily who live nearby. Af­ter that I spent ev­ery school hol­i­day surf­ing there un­til I fi­nally moved here when I was 17.

Be­ing able to grow up around the waves of Bun­do­ran would have been so epic. So, tell me though … How do you feel the surf cul­ture has changed with the grow­ing num­bers of surfers, pho­tog­ra­phers like me, so many busi­nesses with com­mer­cial in­ter­ests etc get­ting in­volved?

Ahh next ques­tion! Okay … think I'll skip a few ques­tions then! So, I heard you had a boat in Indo for like five years or some­thing, what the story there?

Yeah me and a close friend Kwab went 50/50 on a 38-foot cata­ma­ran. Which we sailed and surfed our way from Kavieng in Pa­pua New Guinea all the way to the Mentawais in West Su­ma­tra. All in all it was about three years and with­out a doubt one of the best ex­pe­ri­ences of my life.

So how do you sur­vive the real world and main­tain a surf life­style in your thir­ties?

Well I sup­pose that de­pends on what you clas­sify the real world, haha! Seems like the real world is what­ever you make it. The real world for me is find­ing a bal­ance be­tween work and spend­ing plenty of time in the surf and hang­ing out with friends.

“WE SAILED AND SURFED OUR WAY FROM KAVIENG

IN PA­PUA NEW GUINEA

ALL THE WAY TO THE

MENTAWAIS IN WEST SU­MA­TRA .”

For sure, OK let's pre­tend I’m an 18-year old surfer and I know in my heart I want to al­ways have surf­ing in my life­style. What ad­vice would you give me?

Most im­por­tant thing I would say is to make sure you live some­where where the waves are good and rest will fall into place. Se­condly, learn how lay rail be­fore you try do an air …please.

Wise words there. Do you feel like your surf­ing is still im­prov­ing at this stage?

I think its only nat­u­ral with the more ex­pe­ri­ence comes more knowl­edge and there­fore im­prove­ment. I’m only 37 and these days guys are still rip­ping all the way through their for­ties and fifties.

That's so good to know that when it comes to surf­ing, age is never the key fac­tor. But how is your stoke fac­tor as you grow older?

The stoke is still strong es­pe­cially when the waves are hol­low.

One more ques­tion I got here, it's a deep one, how does surf­ing en­rich your life?

For me surf­ing has helped make my life bet­ter in lots of ways. It has in­spired me to travel to some amaz­ing places world­wide where I have ex­pe­ri­enced dif­fer­ent cul­tures which I think helps you to be­come more open minded. Thats not to men­tion all my great friends I’ve met along the way.

“THE STOKE IS STILL STRONG ES­PE­CIALLY WHEN THE WAVES

ARE HOL­LOW .”

So last time I saw you you were pretty much tak­ing own­er­ship of the Vol­com house in France, so where have you been the last six months?

Yeah that place seems more like home to me than Eng­land! I've had a su­per busy last six months chas­ing swells lead­ing up to Christ­mas I went down to Por­tu­gal where we scored some of the most fun waves I've had in Europe. I was there with Roberto d'amico and Mar­lon Lipke. Af­ter that I came home for a few days and got a call from Tim Bor­row say­ing there's a swell in Ire­land, so it was straight back on a plane chas­ing win­ter swells. Then I thought it was time to get into some warmer waters so I flew out to Hawaii for the win­ter, which was so good. Oh and then I stopped off in Cal­i­for­nia for a quick month and fell in love with the place. I re­ally didn't want to come home! Ha ha!

How was Hawaii? Was that your first time?

My win­ter in Hawaii was such a good ex­pe­ri­ence, I loved ev­ery minute of it. I feel like it re­ally builds char­ac­ter over there just the whole vibe and the waves. There’s al­ways some scary faces out at Pipe when it’s on, and even just cruis­ing around the beach. It keeps you on your toes that’s for sure! It was my se­cond time there, the first time was a few years back when I was in my grom days (or am I still a grom?) but this time I knew what to ex­pect and was ready to grab the bull by the horns and go on any­thing! I def­i­nitely tried to earn as much re­spect as I could when I was there, af­ter all it is why they call it the 'prov­ing grounds'.

What were you ex­pect­ing and how did it pan out?

I sort of knew what to ex­pect but that doesn't make it any eas­ier. I wanted to get as many of the good waves at Pipe­line as pos­si­ble, hav­ing the Vol­com Stone on the front of your board def­i­nitely helps, but you need to be su­per on it and al­ways ready to go when you get your chance. Hawaii is a fan­tas­tic place with a va­ri­ety of waves. Part of my goal on this trip was to con­tinue to im­prove and surf­ing in such pow­er­ful waves for months gives you that con­fi­dence to push your lim­its. Hav­ing been surf­ing for as long as I can re­mem­ber (around three years old I reckon) it’s still a real buzz to feel your­self im­prov­ing, push­ing turns harder, com­plet­ing big­ger and bet­ter airs, feel­ing re­laxed in scary bar­rels. It just keeps you so mo­ti­vated. I had so many ses­sions at Pipe just get­ting some bombs and by the end I felt so com­fort­able out there, which I guess is a big goal in it­self as its a pretty scary wave! I know a lot of peo­ple will agree with me on that one!

Was that you first time hang­ing out in the Vol­com Pipe house? This was my se­cond stay in the Vol­com house. The first stay was with the Vol­com Euro­pean ju­nior team, and was a shorter trip so this time it was nice to get set­tled in and start know­ing the place a bit bet­ter. As groms you have to start off in the ‘small house’ (which is still worth a for­tune) in what’s called the Dun­geon, a dark room down­stairs in the base­ment full of bunk beds and a ev­ery groms gear. The deal is you are ex­pected to keep it all in or­der and clean with­out be­ing told to do so. If they no­tice one bed unmade you have to go to the school park across the road to train and get beasted by Kaiborg who is built like a brick shithouse and prob­a­bly the scari­est guy you will meet. We had to go to the park more than once! This sea­son in the Pipe house was ob­vi­ously dif­fer­ent now be­ing 21. I felt a lot more con­fi­dent in the house. You still have to tow the line and are ex­pected to re­spect the house and the rest of the team. Some­one will let you know if you’re not pulling your weight for sure. I started off this year in the small house again as the big house was full. You wait your turn in the peck­ing or­der to move up the big house. When you get called in by Tai Vandyke (who runs the houses) it feels like you have ar­rived for sure. I had a room on the se­cond floor where I could lay in bed and watch Pipe­line out of my win­dow and the bal­cony was amaz­ing.

Down­stairs in the main part of the house has such an amaz­ing vibe; every­ones froth­ing and amped for surf­ing and the guests/vis­i­tors to the house are like a who's who of surf­ing.

Does ev­ery­one put their name on their milk car­tons/food/ice cream in the fridge?

With food in the kitchen fridge etc you need to eat it and not leave it for long as it will just go and go­ing around ask­ing scary Hawai­ians who's eaten you pizza is not a good idea.

Are all the sto­ries of wild par­ties true?

You bet they are, but some of what goes on in the house stays in the house! Who were you hang­ing with?

There are al­ways a lot of Vol­com rid­ers around you are never stuck for a surf buddy. I surfed with so many in­ter­na­tional rid­ers and for sure you're al­ways learn­ing from them.

Which waves did you surf and which were your favourite?

I had use of the van while I was there in re­turn for do­ing the air­port trans­fers for the team, usu­ally two or three times a week, which I en­joyed as I passed my UK driv­ing test in early Jan­uary, so to be let loose on the six lane high­ways was pretty cool. Then hav­ing use of the van let me surf any of the other waves on the is­land.

Rocky Point was one of my favourites it is just a dream for airs; a wicked left wedge and the wind nearly al­ways blows in to it from the left so per­fect for me. I surfed Off the Wall loads and Haleiwa.

Did you snag any sneaky bombs at Pipe?

Pipe­line is a full on wave you can never re­ally re­lax. It has so much power even on small days. I def­i­nitely had my fair share but you soon re­alise wait­ing for that per­fect one, the bar­rel of your life will prob­a­bly have some­one else on. So you just go when you get your chance and never hold back be­cause that re­ally won't do you any favours. I sup­pose to sum up my time at The Vol­com Pipe house up is that I feel in­cred­i­bly lucky and priv­i­leged, as a grom I never dreamt I would get the chance. So stoked with the guys at Vol­com for be­liev­ing in me for the last 11 years.

‘IF THEY NO­TICE ONE BED UNMADE YOU GET BEASTED BY KAIBORG WHO IS BUILT LIKE A BRICK SHITHOUSE AND PROB­A­BLY THE SCARI­EST GUY YOU WILL MEET.’

How was the vibe in Cal­i­for­nia?

I flew to San Diego where I have rel­a­tives, which is a real plus as Cali is pretty ex­pen­sive, es­pe­cially ac­com­mo­da­tion. I was so stoked when they picked me up from the air­port and had a per­fect base in El Ca­jon with a wicked pool and they lent me a spare car for the du­ra­tion! The near­est wave was prob­a­bly 20 min­utes away, Mis­sion Beach. Al­though there are waves ev­ery­where pretty close, mostly I trav­elled about an hour when the traf­fic was quiet up to Tres­tles. It was def­i­nitely a dif­fer­ent vibe to Hawaii, a lot more chilled and re­laxed you are not dic­ing with death like Pipe­line, peo­ple aren't as com­pet­i­tive and are more talk­a­tive and ap­proach­able. I had so many com­pli­ments on my surf­ing from guys in the wa­ter and on the beach, some­thing you don't tend to get in Hawaii or Europe for that mat­ter! Ev­ery­one is so pos­i­tive. Cali is the first place apart from home I have been to that I could see my­self liv­ing long term. I would be more than happy to do the hour drive from San Diego and the half hour walk ev­ery­day of my life to surf waves like Tres­tles. I didn’t have a filmer while I was there but would have had the clip of my life for sure, but got that one in the me­mory bank!

What are your plans for the rest of 2017?

Plans for the rest of 2017 ... well as I write I’m plan­ning to go to Indo with the Vol­com In­ter­na­tional team for a two week film­ing trip, al­though I will prob­a­bly get there a cou­ple of weeks be­fore the team and maybe stay for a bit af­ter to get more for my buck with jet lag etc. Then I will be head­ing back to the Vol­com house in Hossegor, for the summer sea­son. Who knows whats next? Peo­ple and surf me­dia try to pi­geon hole you, whether you're a free surfer or com­pe­ti­tion surfer or what­ever, but to be hon­est I'm just a surfer try­ing to im­prove ev­ery­day and be ready for any op­por­tu­nity, upping my game day by day. I love surf­ing...

‘THAT PLACE SEEMS MORE LIKE HOME TO ME THAN ENG­LAND!’

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.