20 March, 2014 20 March, 2014

Busting Down Dungeons’ Door – New Recruits Tackle Monster Waves

Thursday, 20 March 2014 will be remembered as a special one at Dungeons. Not because it was the biggest or the cleanest ever, but it will be recounted as the day that a new (young) crew of chargers gave it a proper go in numbers.

The new recruits, ready to launch.

Guys like Josh Redman, Matt Bromley and James Louw have joined the established group of Dungeons riders having also paddled out at a young age, but until this session there hasn’t been a full-on crew of new guys given it a real go at once.

Youngest of them all was Koby Oberholzer. At just 14 years of age, Koby grabbed the honour of being the youngest ever to charge some waves below the Sentinel. Nerves got the better of him at first while he watched from the boat, but after a puke and some encouraging words he paddled out and scratched into a bomb.

A pod of dolphins encourage Koby Oberholzer to paddle deeper.

Joining Koby for their maiden Dungeons experience were current WQS campaigners; Slade Prestwich, David van Zyl, Dale Staples, Beyrick De Vries and Mikey February.

Around the same age as the older guys in the new crew, but already with a number of Dungeons sessions to his name, Matt Bromley was impressed with the new recruits’ bravery. “The small wave shredders from the Quiksilver comp last weekend were charging!” he reckoned. “It was rad to share some solid waves with them. And they got to experience something totally different from their WQS accustomed lifestyles.”

Matt Bromley on a bomb.

“The waves were wild and big!” continued Matt about the session. “Early in the morning a few of us were stressing hard as some monster sets pulled in. At least 20 foot-plus. Then it cooled off a little and the conditions improved, which made for a great day of Dungeons surfing.”

The swell charts peaked at 6 meters with a 16 second period, sending 25-foot sets to Dungeons at first light, before easing throughout the day.

Jeremy Johnson, who was out at dawn with Simon Louw, was pumped-up after the past two days’ action at Dungeons. “What was looking like a great swell ended up being a bumpy start to the season with some massive waves!” he explained. “The swell filled in yesterday and all the boys had a couple, but it wasn’t easy. Early this morning was huge. Simon Louw and myself sat out the back dodging 25-foot bombs with the help of Andy Marr on the ski. It wasn’t an easy surf, with lots of bumps and tricky waves.”

Jeremy Johnson was showing his usual commitment.

Jem too was stoked on the younger crew’s performance in the testing surf. “It was awesome to see all the younger pros out there giving it a go. Well done, boys! It was a great start to what will hopefully be an epic upcoming winter.”

Zag photo editor, Alan Van Gysen, was there to document the day for Zag and captured these thoughts as he chatted to the big wave chargers after another heavy water session under the Sentinel.

For more hard-charging moments from this session check out this gallery of highlights.

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