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Catching Some  Waves

Surfing is truly one of the most enjoyable things you can do on the water. Everyone's been doing a lot of surfing recently last week because there were good waves for slightly more experienced surfers and this week because the conditions were perfect for beginners.

When you're starting out, you tend not to want great big waves because the matter of not falling off is more pressing. After a few hours on a board, the falling off issue is starting to sort itself out and you've caught a few waves. Some people take to it, some don't, but everyone who's tried it recently has enjoyed it enormously.

The beach between Los Cristianos and Playas de Las Americas is often the best place to surf, though of course there are opportunities pretty much everywhere. You can usually look out over the water in a specific stretch - a palm tree-lined avenue between the two coastal towns - and see a sea full of surfers. Because Tenerife is swept by the tradewinds, there's almost always good water for surfing.

When the sea is feeling gentle, you can get to grips with balancing on a bit of fibreglass before you start paddling about after waves. On these smooth seas, you realise that even little waves have a huge amount of heft behind them. As long as you paddle hard enough to get caught by one, they'll carry you all the way to the shore where you can woop victoriously and turn around to start again. When it's blowing a little harder and waves are breaking further out, the situation is a bit more exciting. You'll get up a lot of speed, balancing on that bit of fibreglass as nature shows you a ride you can't get in any theme park.

Anywhere you'll be likely to surf in southern Tenerife is devoid of rocks, reefs and other nasty things to hit, so it's a safe spot to try it out. Even so, there's always the feeling of drama. There's so little other than you and the waves that you feel extremely in tune with nature. Almost everyone who's just gone surfing for the first time says they feel a little different: more alive, more in touch. As the summer heats up and this vibrant little island gets busier, there's certain to be more and more people grabbing boards and heading out, and more and more stories of that brilliant experience of catching a wave for the first time.

By Oscar Hawes - Field Communications Officer

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