Surfing for Change

When we were in Capitola, just south of Santa Cruz we met up with professional surfer and Patagonia Team Rider, Kyle Thiermann.

Kyle first caught our eye doing his TED talk, on stage in a wetsuit, surfboard in hand campaigning on environmental issues. We have been following his work ever since, we knew he was based in Capitola and since we were stopping for the night we got in touch and met up with him for some dinner and drinks at Suda.

Kyle founded Surfing for Change to educate the world and specifically the surfing community, about environmental issues. His angle is not to preach but to tell stories that are entertaining, informative and grab the attention of an audience that often times tune out.

He recently released a film ‘Indonesia Trash Tubes’ that has already had over 30,000 views.

Kyle is only 23 and is engaging thousands of people with his projects, his passion and enthusiasm where infectious. With huge respect and admiration we left Capitola encouraged that his Outstanding work is really making a difference around the globe.

An outstanding 25th Birthday

I had a fantastic three day fiesta for my birthday this year. And it was pretty outstanding to say the least.

On Saturday night a bunch of us had a pizza feast at Il Basilico with the Surf Simply team, followed by a pool party and massive cake fight at The Rancho.

On Sunday Jessie Carnes, a new friend of mine and I, along with 50 other horse riders including Ticos, Ticas and tourists; some experts and rookies, went on a ‘Cabalgata’ – a day trek on horse back taking us through jungle, deep rivers, and cantering up dirt tracks with a beer, food and music truck accompanying us the whole way. The ride finished at sunset at Olga’s bar on the beach for arroz con pollo, dancing and margaritas.

Monday, a little sore from riding started with a wonderful breakfast with my husband and a surf at Guiones beach. 3ft, super clean and heaps of waves. After an early lunch we headed to meet DK from Drifters Kayaking, an old friend of Ross’, we cruised up a mellow river in and out of the mangroves on sit on top kayaks, spotting two crocodiles, kingfishers, cormorants, and hawks. We had a spontaneous lunch and a ‘michelada style (lime, ice and salt) beer at La Luna restaurant, cycled the 20 minutes home in booming thunder and lightening that lit up the whole night sky. And then incase I hadn’t been treated enough already we went out for dinner at Dos Pochotes.

We leave Costa Rica in five days and will head straight to Campovida, Hopland to start getting ready for The Do Lectures USA (19th-23rd). After that it’s the Alcatraz swim on the 28th and cycling south to Surfrider for an October Internship.

I know there will be tonnes of ‘Outstanding’ to come so watch this space.














Getting to know Catherine Bruhwiler

Catherine is a professional surfer, mother of two and co-owner of a family business: Bruhwiler Surf School in Tofino, BC and owns her own stand up paddle board school called SUP Tofino, yep she’s a busy lady.

Catherine grew up in Tofino and began surfing as a child on a piece of plywood, and at that time was one of the very few female surfers in the waves. Since then, she has championed the female Canadian surf world and travelled the world to compete and play.

We sat down with her on the west coast of Canada and asked her the IPOS questionairre…

Full name? Catherine Bruhwiler

Occupation? Full time Surf and SUP instructor

Where are you right now? At home, just got out of the shower after a surf. My daughter is playing the fiddle for me and my son is packing for a camping surf trip tonight.

What woke you up this morning? My alarm clock at 7 am. Good thing you didn’t ask me yesterday, I got up at 4:15 for a sunrise tour.

What’s stoking your fire today? Remote surf camp with outward bound kids tomorrow and camping with my kids

What scares you? My kids in danger, that’s it

What sound do you love? Waves and silence too

What sound do you hate? Arguing people,especially my own kids

Who or what is outstanding in your eyes? Humble generous and talented humans

If heaven exists, what would you like God to say to you as you arrive at the pearly gates? You can get lots of sleep here 🙂

Getting to know Fergal Smith

If you have seen the front page of a surf magazine in the last two years there is a good chance you have caught a glimpse of Fergal Smith. Fergal digs big waves, waves that, quite frankly scare the shit out of most people. We met Fergal at The Do Lectures in April and were blown away by how humble, unassuming, and passionate he was for creating change in the world.

You see, Fergal totally digs planet Earth. Literally and figuratively. He is on a full out path to do his bit to reconnect people to the thing we have lost sight of, nature.

We sent Fergal a few questions and are stoked to share the first of many exciting and exclusive interviews with you.

Full name?
Fergal Peter Smith

Luckily I am still getting paid to go surfing, but I see my hard work going into the land as that’s what feels most important.

Where are you right now?
In my rented house on a hill called Lackamore. It’s on the west coast of Ireland in a county called Clare near the Cliffs of Moher.

What woke you this morning?
Wind and rain! ha ha!

What’s stoking your fire right now?
Rest. The weather has been amazing the past week and with the long summer days I had been going from 6am till after midnight every day sailing, surfing, gardening etc. So my body is buzzing on the break and the time to reflect on what an amazing week I was so lucky to experience.

What scares you?
I try not get too scared about the scary stuff and keep positive and hopeful for the future. But what we have done to our perfect home is so sad and scary and many don’t seem to care. It is very clear that our money hungry attitude is destroying the world in which we are all living. Yet the powers that be seem more concerned about keeping the money dream alive than keep us alive! I do believe the majority of people want to do good and hopefully it wont be too long until the old attitudes are behind us and the earth can start to cleanse herself.

What sound or noise do you love?

What sound or noise do you hate?

Who or what in your life are outstanding right now?
Wow, there are so many outstanding things and people I would have to write a book! First off what you guys (Alice and Ross) are doing, cycling down the whole west coast of America working on organic farms and basically spreading the word of the future. To me that is outstanding!!! On another outstanding note, how great is it that the earth keeps providing us with food for nothing in return…

If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say as you arrive at the pearly gates?
I would love a big hug from the big guy and that is it. If I could have helped the world in anyway that would be great but I wouldn’t want any praise or anything. I am having a great time on earth at the moment and I feel lucky enough just to be here, so I would be thanking him for the fun times.

And so the story starts

On the 19th May 2012 we got married in St Davids Cathedral and on the 19th May 2013 we will be embarking on the next chapter of our lives. We are going ‘In Pursuit of Outstanding’ to create a better world for ourselves and future generations. As our world leaders aren’t taking action, it is up to us and others to find new ways of collaborating to create a world we want to live in.

The long and the short of it is this: the fundamental systems that allow humans to live on planet earth are under enormous pressure from the impacts of climate change, biodiversity loss and ineffective resource use, and a lack of care and compassion for the world around us.

Wales was the cradle of the industrial revolution that changed the face of the world; our natural resources were used to power the businesses that reached to all corners. With nearly all of the coal mines closed and only a couple of steelworks left, Wales has the opportunity to embrace the green revolution and lead the way in one planet living; our pursuit is to find inspiration and practical examples from the individuals and organisations around the World who are leading the way.

We are taking two years to volunteer, intern and work our way around the world’s coastlines, traveling by bicycle with a trailer for our surfboards and camping gear. We start our journey in Vancouver on Monday 20th May 2013 and will

cycle 2000 miles south to Los Angeles.

4 days and counting.

PS – this blog is not just a diary for the next few years but also a great way for friends, family and anyone else who is reading to share, comment and engage in our journey so feel free and post away!