These days Skeleton Bay doesn’t require a formal introduction anymore. Most wave riders that love getting barrelled are familiar with this wave and what it can do. You have seen the videos of Koa Smith screaming like he is losing his mind after spending a good half-minute in the pit. There are plenty more crazy POV filmed rides from wave riders all over the globe.
Who wants to go to Skeleton Bay?
From Hawaii to Europe, South Africa, Australia, you will have most barrel-hungry chargers congregate on this strip of sand when the swell shows up. As you start spotting these big bubbles forming on the synoptic charts, you start getting butterflies in your stomach. You know what is coming and already start thinking about the best wave you going to get off your life. In my opinion, this is really one of the few places that can time and time again offer you this possibility.
How long can I REALLY get barrelled for?
Barrel rides up to a minute long?!? YES, 60 seconds in the tube. You will need to make an appointment with your psychologist once you return home after something like that. It will be burnt into your memories for a lifetime, pretty sure if Alzheimer’s gets you in your old age, that vision will still stay burnt into that pip of yours.
The first time I went to experience this wonder/freak of nature, I didn’t really know what to expect. I’ve heard some of these terms being thrown around: “Heaviest waves I’ve ever seen bru”. “It’s called The Donkey cause it kicks you like one”. “When it gets bigger than 6ft, I don’t want anything to do with it, it’s that heavy”.” That rip is fucked mate”. “Run as much as you can to make sure you are as fit as you possibly can be”. “It’s the ironman of surfing”.
The day arrived when I was on this magical strip of sand in front of Skeleton Bay for the first time. Waves so long, you can’t see when it starts or when it finishes. There are excitement and pure stoke in the air. Everyone that has made the mission for the swell. It’s like nature organizes this wave festival in the middle of the desert and gives everyone 4 days’ notice to go take part in one of the most joyful celebrations of wave riding I have ever encountered.
It’s like everyone is on ecstasy, frothing for each other, cheering and screaming for each other. Regardless what device you are using to ride the waves. One of the few places I’ve seen bodyboarders and surfers hooting for each other purely because you are getting pitted off your nut!
Im writing this purely from my perspective on what my experience was like when I went for the first time, and I have been back 6 times since. Each time is unique, but the vibe is the same. Pure stoke from everyone.
Can my girlfriend come with?
The Skeleton bay experience is not for everyone though. It is a logistical nightmare for most. Last-minute telling the boss you’re not coming to work for the next week, very expensive flights, the possibility of your luggage not arriving, swell forecast changing, etc. So when deciding that you would like to surf this wave, these are some of the first factors you have to consider before pissing off the wife or boss. It is a mission from anywhere in the world and comes at a price. So if your girlfriend is one for witnessing one of natures greatest wonders and doesn’t mind enduring the elements she is going to love it, if she is one that enjoys the luxuries of the Maldives villas she might not find this very appealing and might not share the same stoke as those getting barrelled all day long.
What is Skeleton bay like in terms of scenery?
It isn’t your typical tropical surf destination with warm water, palm trees, and inviting conditions. It’s fully the opposite. Cold misty mornings, massive sand dunes, uninviting gurgling mutating heavy dredging barrels that want to break every bone in your body and blow out your eardrums, sandblasting gale force winds, jackals, seals, and other wildlife all form part of one of the rawest waves we have on this spinning rock.
You’re thinking to yourself, holy shit this is exactly what I want to experience in my life. You want to get the best wave of your life. We at South Africa Surf Tours have put together the ultimate guide for you to experience this wonder of nature. Every single detail that you need is in this guide to get you the best wave of your life.
What are you waiting for? At the end of the day, this wave is formed by sand, and sand can move and disappear at any time. Get there before it’s gone.
Article By South Africa Surf Tours
If you’re considering a trip to South Africa or Namibia we highly recommend booking your trip through South Africa Surf Tours