Displaying items by tag: Mullaghmore Head
The Northcore film 'Fathoms Left to Fall' follows some of the world's top big wave surfers as they converged on Co Sligo to take advantage of the swell, prompted by the extreme weather system known as the 'Viking storm'.
Among the Irish riders featured is 24-year-old Ollie O'Flaherty, who has been nominated for the 'biggest wave' prize in the 2012 Billabong XXL Big Wave Awards for his monster ride at Mullaghmore.
Also nominated for his outstanding effort at the Sligo surf mecca is Andrew Cotton, a Devon native who's no stranger to Ireland's big rollers.
Ollie O'Flaherty, 24, is nominated along with Devon's Andrew Cotton for the massive surf they caught off Co Sligo on 8 March last.
It was the first visit to the world-class big wave spot by O'Flaherty, a science student at NUI Galway who is a veteran of the Co Clare scene.
As previously reported on Afloat.ie, it was Cotton who tackled the biggest wave on that day - a giant 50-footer - as some of the world's top surfers took advantage of the Viking swell.
Also nominated for the $50,000 (€38,280) prize is Irish-American surfer Garrett McNamara, who last year rode what is being called the biggest wave ever surfed in the world, a 90-foot goliath off Nazaré in Portugal.
According to the Irish Independent, O'Flaherty has put out a call for sponsorship so he can attend the awards ceremony next month.
"It's a massive honor to be able to represent Ireland," he said, but added that he is "pretty much on the breadline from what I'm doing".
Should he win, the Lahinch native said he intends to "put every cent back into surfing" and replace his seven broken boards.
The winners will be announced at the Billabong XXL Big Wave Awards in Anaheim, California on 4 May.
From the biggest rollers in years off Mullaghmore Head in Co Sligo to the Cliffs of Moher and even as far south as Kerry, Ireland has seen some of its best surf in a long time - and things are certainly looking up for an exciting summer on the waves.
#SURFING - It may have been too late for the postponed Tow-In Surf Session, but the big waves at Mullaghmore Head finally picked up this week - and some of the world's top surfers were there to take advantage of the swell.
As The Irish Times reports, an extreme weather system nicknamed the 'Viking storm' helped produced monster rollers on Thursday that are the biggest the area has seen in 15 years.
Richie Fitzgerald described the scene as "very calculated madness", noting that a safety crew was on hand as the 16-strong group took on the "huge, unruly and very dangerous swell".
The Irish Times has much more on the story, while Surfer Today has more video of the last winter swell at Mullaghmore Head HERE.
Organisers decided to postpone the invitation-only event till next winter after conditions off Mullaghmore Head in Co Sligo failed to reach the minimum height requirement, as Magicseaweed reports.
“We’ve had a few swells that have come close,” said contest organiser Paul O’Kane of the Irish Surf Rescue Club. “However we set the standard incredibly high with the first event and were determined to only hold the event if the conditions were as good as that, if not better.”
Magicseaweed’s Ben Freeston concurred, saying that “the conditions needed for Mullaghmore to show it’s real face are so specific you might only see them a handful of times in the best years.
“This year we have had four or five swells that were big enough to be interesting, but not quite competition standard.”
The inaugural session was organised in an effort to dispel the myth that tow-in surfing, where surfers are towed by jetski to bigger offshore waves, is an irresponsible activity.
Last year's contest was also immortalised in an upcoming documentary from Mully Productions.
#SURFING - One of Germany's top surfers was in Ireland last week to sample some of Ireland's biggest waves, InsideIreland.ie reports.
Sebastian Steudtner was in Sligo to films a series of online views for Tourism Ireland in Frankfurt to pique the interest of German surfers and holidaymakers.
As well as mountain biking at Knocknarea and Union Woods, Steudtner took on the monster swells at Mullaghmore Head - made popular among the world's big wave surfers by the Tow-In Surf Session that's now in its second year.
The 'teaser' videos for a larger TV and online project will be premiered next week at the Berlin International Film Festival before hitting the web later in spring.
Kristina Gauges of Tourism Ireland said: "This is a fantastic opportunity to showcase the world-class surfing and adventure product available in this part of Ireland to a niche audience in Germany."
InsideIreland.com has more on the story HERE.
#SURFING - British surfer Jayce Robinson wasn't about to let the largest wave ever recorded off Ireland's shores go by without giving it a shot.
And as Sky News Online reports, he was captured doing exactly that on Tuesday afternoon.
The Cornish surfing pro told the website: "It was definitely the biggest barrell I've ever surfed.
"I was a little nervous but I didn't have time to think about it - it's almost like a car crash, you don't know what's happening."
Robinson rode the giant wave for 20 seconds before the lip crashed down and knocked him off his board.
His surfing partner Lyndon Wake, who towed him to the swell at Mullaghmore Head, said: "It's always a worst case scenario when your tow partner wipes out. Lucky he managed to come out the other side OK."
As previously reported on Afloat.ie, storm force winds off the coast of Donegal produced monster rollers of over 20 metres (over 60 feet) in height detected in Donegal Bay.
Mullaghmore Head will once again welcome the world's top big wave surfers for the second annual Tow-In Surf Session in the New Year.
#SURFING - Irish surfing ace Easkey Britton sat down with Cooler magazine to chat about her "whirlwind" last few months.
Britton, who comes from the highly regarded Donegal surfing dynasty, has spent much of this year jugging her studies towards a PhD in marine science with her training for the European Surfing Championships in her home county this past September.
"I don’t know how anyone survives their PhD without being able to jump in the sea and catch some waves," she says. "It clears my mind, renews my energy – the best ‘study breaks’ you can get. And I appreciate the sessions I have a lot more."
Now heading into winter, with the surf getting bigger every day, she's in training with tow partner Neil Britton for the second Tow-In Surf Session at Mullaghmore Head.
She says of last year's inaugural competition: "The conditions were unreal. Huge, clean, light winds, sunshine. A very rare combo. It was our first ever experience of something like that. The crowds covering the headland were massive, it felt like an amphitheater, or being a gladiator in the arena!"
Britton also talks about how her family has been a big inspiration to her both in her life and her accomplishments on the surfboard.
Cooler has more on the story HERE.
More than 20 of Ireland's and Europe's top surfers took on the monster waves at Sligo’s Mullaghmore Head at the weekend in Ireland's first ever 'big wave' surf contest.
The Tow-in Surf Session was organised by the Irish Surf Rescue Club in part to dispel the myth that tow-in surfing - where surfers are towed by jetski to bigger offshore waves - is an irresponsible activity.
Club president Paul O’Kane told The Irish Times: “Our surf riders and personal watercraft operators are all very safety conscious, highly trained, and contests like this can help to further develop skill sets.”
Eric Ribiere and Benjamin Sanchis from France took top place in the open category in a contest that rewarded skill and commitment on the biggest waves. Peter Conroy and Gyln Ovens came first in the Irish division, follwed closely by Al Mennie and Andrew Cotton.
Awards went to professional boarder Gabe Davies for best wave, Al Mennie for best barrel and Richie Fitzgerald for heaviest wipeout.
Easkey Britton also held her own as the only female competitor on the day, catching a solid 20-foot wave.
Click HERE for more video of the contest's big wave surfing action.