Fiji - Denarau in August

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Cranked
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Re: Fiji - Denarau in August

Post by Cranked » Sat Aug 12, 2017 2:59 pm

It is of interest though foamy, if I wanted to surf there twice a day for a month like I do on the bukit it would cost me a cool F$7,500, so I do appreciate the knowledge very much
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Re: Fiji - Denarau in August

Post by Beanpole » Sat Aug 12, 2017 3:56 pm

I'm a bit motivated to go further afield there now. Might organise going over to the other big island and check out some spots out there next time. My wife was talking about going back at Xmas but that seems like a pretty bad time to be there.

I thought the cost for the surf was basically okay. It's a great experience just hanging out there but the operators have to look to the majority of customers. As I said it depends on the Captain and crew. Just make sure you establish exactly what you are looking for and what the other customers are up for as well.

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Re: Fiji - Denarau in August

Post by Cranked » Sat Aug 12, 2017 6:13 pm

Four of us flew to Fiji in 1983, we were going to get a boat to Kandavu. We hung around the docks for about 4 days trying, then went out to the local airfield and found a kiwi who agreed to take us in his 6 seater (including pilot) cesna: $100 each. Fcuking Banks was prepared for anything with an 8' gun which was squeezed in on top of the the seats and past the pilots shoulder almost resting on the instrument panel.

The pilot did a complete circumnavigation of the coastline for us so we could check out the surf potential. We all agreed on our destination and the pilot landed in a field that was actually a runway. Then took off and left us.

After an hour sitting in the grassy field a flatbed truck appeared and took us to a remote village (the most picturesque village and waterways I've ever seen) about an hours drive away, and our adventure began.

We didn't see any other surfers and only one whitey the whole time we were there. The whole trip was an hilarious story of misadventure worthy of a short story. Jim and I tell it sometimes if we get egged on enough. The locals wanted $20/head to take us across the bay, too much in those days, so we paddled about 45 minutes each way.
“I don’t necessarily agree with everything I say ”— Marshall McLuhan

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Re: Fiji - Denarau in August

Post by steve shearer » Sat Aug 12, 2017 6:52 pm

It's hard to do Fiji cheaply, or as cheaply as Bali, but I was shocked when i was at Cloudbreak how uncrowded it was and the lack of roosters/Brazzos/Euros......and I have to say, that made it an all around much more pleasant surf trip than Bali.

I paid in advance for one boat ride a day as part of the accom and seeing as we made sure our boat driver was well looked after we'd usually surf 4-5hrs....which was enough. Although there were a couple days I could have gone back for seconds.

The majority of the crowd was 50+ year old dentists from America. They obviously had cash but they were back on the boat after the first 6 foot set.
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Re: Fiji - Denarau in August

Post by buddy » Sat Aug 12, 2017 6:58 pm

That's similar to the experience I've been told by my mate who's been 3 times. Crowd factor that is. I'm yet to go, but that factor is part of the pull.

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Re: Fiji - Denarau in August

Post by steve shearer » Sat Aug 12, 2017 7:04 pm

I think CB at 6 ft or over regulates the crowd pretty quickly.

The most crowded day by far was a sunny 3-4ft day.
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Re: Fiji - Denarau in August

Post by buddy » Sat Aug 12, 2017 7:05 pm

Same as Lennox, anga's, bells, winki etc

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Re: Fiji - Denarau in August

Post by Cranked » Sat Aug 12, 2017 7:23 pm

steve shearer wrote:
Sat Aug 12, 2017 6:52 pm
It's hard to do Fiji cheaply, or as cheaply as Bali, but I was shocked when i was at Cloudbreak how uncrowded it was and the lack of roosters/Brazzos/Euros......and I have to say, that made it an all around much more pleasant surf trip than Bali.

I paid in advance for one boat ride a day as part of the accom and seeing as we made sure our boat driver was well looked after we'd usually surf 4-5hrs....which was enough. Although there were a couple days I could have gone back for seconds.

The majority of the crowd was 50+ year old dentists from America. They obviously had cash but they were back on the boat after the first 6 foot set.
There's rarely more than about 30 surfers out at ulu's either when its 8' foot plus and thats over 4 breaks spread over about 2k. Usually around 10 at 10'
“I don’t necessarily agree with everything I say ”— Marshall McLuhan

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Re: Fiji - Denarau in August

Post by JET01 » Sat Aug 12, 2017 9:56 pm

Elmako wrote:
Sat Aug 12, 2017 11:42 am
Funny how the conversation gets distorted along the way, specially with the $$$.

Jet you can take your boardbag with you, I am taking 2 boards.

Packing tomorrow, flying Monday first thing.

Frothing hard

J
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Re: Fiji - Denarau in August

Post by Beanpole » Sat Aug 12, 2017 10:51 pm

Definitely agree. For all the frothing most surfers don't actually want to confront getting caught inside by overhead waves on a shallow sharp reef.

Crowd wise when we were there it was basically Pros and a few tourists at Cloudbreak. The fact that I managed to nab a few waves out there is testament to how uncrowded it was. Pretty cruisy vibe. Basically everyone on our boat had a crack at Cloudbreak but after an hour or two everyone except one guy had come in. Everyone was intermediate. My son was probably the best surfer on the boat bar one of the crew.

Namotu we pretty much had to ourselves. Then again I usually have uncrowded surfs n Bali. Only really crowded surf I had last time was at Ulu. You couldn't really call Balangan crowded. There's lots of waves over there.

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Re: Fiji - Denarau in August

Post by steve shearer » Tue Aug 15, 2017 2:06 pm

looks like shit tons of surf heading Fiji way boys.

hope you got some big boards with you.
I want Nightclub Dwight dead in his grave I want the nice-nice up in blazes

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Re: Fiji - Denarau in August

Post by steve shearer » Mon Aug 21, 2017 2:27 pm

suspense is killing me
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Re: Fiji - Denarau in August

Post by Elmako » Tue Aug 22, 2017 12:39 pm

Back from Fiji, had a similar experience to Beanpole.

Surfed Cloudbreak at around 5 to 6 foot, scary enough however managed to get 5 waves in 3 hours in the water, not because it was crowded (it was not crowded to my surprise, we were 6 guys in the water), just some of the drops.... , took a 6.8" board out there and that helped with getting in early however not sure if that board was fitting the curve of the wave on the mid sized ones, felt a bit long.

Surfed a right hander called Swimming Pools, gets half the size, so at around 3 feet was lots of fun and again 5 surfers in the water. Also ticked off high tide Restaurants, only got 2 waves , bounced off the reef and went for the safety of the boat, lucky had a 2 mm vest.

It is definitely worth the trip, one of the days the missus came on the boat and she snorkelled while I got a few waves, all good. Fiji Surf Co looked after us really well, bunch of good local blokes and an American guy named Stuart (super nice bloke) which runs the payments and photos, etc.

Be aware that the food and drinks at the resorts is where the catch is, booked via Expedia and got a killer room with water views from what I thought was reasonable, etc etc and ended up paying more for food and beverages than the 6 nights accom.

Will be definitely going back as the Bula spirit and short flights makes it super easy in and out.

Cheers
J

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Re: Fiji - Denarau in August

Post by buddy » Tue Aug 22, 2017 1:25 pm

Maybe abstain from drinking and pack some Soylent powder next time, lol.
I don't think the commercial variety has any human contents in it :)

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Re: Fiji - Denarau in August

Post by JET01 » Wed Aug 23, 2017 6:41 pm

Got skunked.

Got there on Sunday evening. Monday and tuesday was used to settle in and spend some time with the kids. Called the contact at Fijisurf I was given by a mate.
When booking I told him we were flexible with days, but only had one day to spend away from the family etc.
He advised that wednesday was looking good.
Booked in for the next morning. Picked up at 7am from the hotel. Drove out to the river mouth, by then it was raining and windy. Headed out to cloudy, hooded rashy on and the peak saved my eyes from the horizontal rain. Cloudy was overhead to double overhead onshore rubbish. Decent crowd given the conditions. Went over to swimming pools, 2ft onshore garbage. Caught 2 waves and spent most of the wave dodging some learners on foamie Mals.
Went over to restaurants. Loooonnnnng waits for 1-2ft sets with 10blokes in the water. Got one wave that went for about 20m before sectioning out.
Despite the shit weather, the guy driving the boat took us for a detour to Namotu to "pick up a cheque", got there, and because of the inclement weather they obviously had no sensible way of getting the cheque to the boat dry, so we left empty handed and got pumped the whole way back to the bay (30-40mins).
Got some dry clothes on. And a lift back to the hotel. 3 waves for 160FJD.

Unlucky maybe.
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Re: Fiji - Denarau in August

Post by buddy » Wed Aug 23, 2017 7:29 pm

Sounds like they said Wednesday is looking good because they had plenty of spaces because everyone that checked knew it would be shit.
You got scammed, unfortunately.

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Re: Fiji - Denarau in August

Post by JET01 » Wed Aug 23, 2017 7:35 pm

They have 2 boats. They we both full. One poor chick was on a "site seeing" trip too. They ended up taking one of the boats back with the poor girl and her partner on it. The rest of us that were hoping for the wind to change stuck it out, but it was all for nothing.

I'm trying my best to get them the benefit of the doubt as I know from my Navy days how quickly the weather can change in the tropics.

Oh and another thing. I'll never believe the report on magicf#@kweed ever again. It's shit for australia, and it's shit for Fiji.
Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air.

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Re: Fiji - Denarau in August

Post by Beanpole » Wed Aug 23, 2017 8:15 pm

Stuart was running the boat the first time we went out. Really worked everything for the trip well. Even gave my son his board to surf Cloudbreak as the rental wasn't that high performance.

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