I’ve had my composite Element since December 2009. Since then, I’ve paddled it countless times and on the odd occasion I’ve been lucky enough to get my old man to take some photos of me when he’s been on his breaks during contracts. So this article is mainly a bunch of photos of me and not really an article as such. You’ll see some of the photos are really small - these are screen shots from video footage that was taken.

You’re probably wondering how the boat is. Well, it’s awesome. Lighter than the plastic, of course, but probably more importantly, it’s stiffer, way stiffer. Unfortunately my boat was a prototype so it doesn’t have fins but as you can see in the photos, it still rips. Fins have advantages and disadvantages but these days I’m so used to not using them, I don’t think I’d even surf a plastic Element with fins now. Being a very keen bodyboarder I know how it feels to ride a board or boat on edge only. Of course, production Elements will have fins boxes, don’t worry. The boat needs a lot more edge control and harder edging without fins because you have to ride the rail and not the fins but you’ll get used to it if that’s your style. Riding with fins is more about a big of edging and some weight transition I find and works damn well, but no fins is sweet too. Just try it. Either way, the boat is really incredible and I’m still loving every single minute of it. Well worth the money. Check out the pics.

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Melkbosstrand, at a surf spot known as Tubewaves. Photo by Wendy van Rijn. I will do a separate article of when the Dutchies came to Cape Town! :) Note, ALL of these photos are from spots near to Cape Town, South Africa :-) Karmers 8 Feb 2010_01 Karmers 8 Feb 2010_03 Karmers 8 Feb 2010_04 Karmers 8 Feb 2010_06Video stills from a misty session at Karmers on 8 Feb 2010.

 Melkbos 11 Feb 2010_01 Melkbos 11 Feb 2010_05 Melkbos 11 Feb 2010_06 Melkbos 11 Feb 2010_07 Melkbos 11 Feb 2010_08 Melkbos 11 Feb 2010_09More video stills, this time from Tubewave, Melkbos, taken 3 days later on 11 Feb 2010 in some big, but messy swell. The video is not bad.

Melkbos 16 January 2010_01 Melkbos 16 January 2010_03 Melkbos 16 January 2010_09 Melkbos 16 January 2010_11One of the most solid days I’ve had at Tubewave, Melkbos on 16 Jan 2010. These are also video stills. The swell this day was 4.7m I think. Any bigger and it starts to get messy here and not as good, and not really bigger. I took some massive beatings that day.

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Warming up. This was a session recently, 25 May 2010.  Again, Tubewave, Melkbos. Melkbos_25_May_2010_029_E1_CREL copy Melkbos_25_May_2010_032_E1_CR copy

Huh, who’s on the beach?! Melkbos_25_May_2010_040_E1_CR copy

A lekker hollow one, and now you know why it’s called Tubewave. I bodyboard a fair amount here, I love this spot.  Melkbos_25_May_2010_052_E1_CR copy Melkbos_25_May_2010_053_E1_CR copy Melkbos_25_May_2010_054_E1_CR copy

A lekker blunt at Tubewave. Melkbos_25_May_2010_087_E1_CR copy

Tubewave, again. Melkbos_25_May_2010_093_E1_CR copy Melkbos_25_May_2010_094_E1_CREL copyBehind the front sand bank is some reef, where I am now in these two photos. It’s in the kelp so staying upright is definitely the plan!!!! You can sometimes get nice rides here, but it’s risky. Go at high tide if the swell is big enough.

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I’m checking out a sweet set breaking over the reef. That’s a nice wave when the sets come through.  Melkbos_25_May_2010_113_E1_CR copy

Loop over this hump, which wasn’t captured.  Melkbos_25_May_2010_123_E1_CR copy Melkbos_25_May_2010_126_E1_CR copy Melkbos_25_May_2010_127_E1_CR copy Melkbos_25_May_2010_128_E1_CR copy

Getting barrelled in the Element. Happy days! Melkbos_25_May_2010_146_E1_CR copy

And the final photo from that 25 May session at Tubewaves.  Melkbos_25_May_2010_169_E1_CR copyMe showering off at Tubewave while internationally known riverboarder crazy man Charl van Rensburg spies on my showering techniques. BTW, that’s the composite Element lurking there – isn’t she beautiful?!

Melkbos_26_Corner_27_February_2010_173_E1_CR copyA session at Corner on 27 Feb 2010, a few hundred metres north of Tubewave. This photo by Michael Schubert.

Noordhoek_24_February_2010_085_E1_CR copy Noordhoek_24_February_2010_094_E1 copy Noordhoek_24_February_2010_108_E1 copyI also managed to score some sweet waves at Noordhoek on one day – 24 Feb. Photos by Michael Schubert. More from this session can be seen on the site already, hence I only included a few shots. 

Table View and Big Bay 17 Feb 2010_01 Table View and Big Bay 17 Feb 2010_02 Table View and Big Bay 17 Feb 2010_07 Table View and Big Bay 17 Feb 2010_08 Table View and Big Bay 17 Feb 2010_09Big Bay  on 17 Feb. Some nice swell, but closing out. Not a great day but had fun anyway.    

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5 January at Table View and managed to score some slick waves in calm conditions.  Table View video 5 January 2010_014

Briefly getting shacked, and then getting eaten.  Table View video 5 January 2010_019 Table View video 5 January 2010_020Final video stills from the 5 Jan Table View session.

Table_View_17_February_2010_002_E1 Table_View_17_February_2010_011_E1_CRAt some session at Table View beach. You can see Table Mountain in the background on the final photo. Waves aren’t usually great here but on a wind still day you can sometimes get something fun.

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The composite Element lurking at Cape Town’s northern most beach – Van Riebeeckstand. Van_Riebeeckstrand_22_May_2010_014_E1_CR copy

This photo, and the rest now, are from a session at Van Riebeeckstrand on 22 May. I had a really upset stomach for a week already from drinking too much river water but I decided to hit a session anyway as I was well keen. Waves were ok but I felt damn sick. At least I got some shots :) Van_Riebeeckstrand_22_May_2010_050_E1_CR copy Van_Riebeeckstrand_22_May_2010_051_E1_CR copy Van_Riebeeckstrand_22_May_2010_055_E1_CR copy Van_Riebeeckstrand_22_May_2010_056_E1_CR copy Van_Riebeeckstrand_22_May_2010_057_E1_CR copy Van_Riebeeckstrand_22_May_2010_067_E1_CREL copy Van_Riebeeckstrand_22_May_2010_068_E1_CREL copy

No fins, no problem. Carve HARD on the edges, they bite nicely.  Van_Riebeeckstrand_22_May_2010_074_E1_CREL copyFinal wave from that session. A HUGE thanks to my dad, Trevor, for taking most of these photos! Super stoked!!

And now for some video footage:

January 2010 sessions!

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And then February 2010 sessions!

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And also a new ‘freestyle move’ I invented… LOL

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And then I also got hold of a Predator VX360 video headcam which I’ve been using a bit. Check the camera itself by clicking HERE.

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Hope you enjoyed the photos and videos. I’ll try to get more soon when I get the chance, which I definitely will. Our winter season produces some big swell so things can only get better. 

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Paddler: Adrian Tregoning.

Photography by: Trevor Tregoning, and also a few by Michael Schubert. Thanks guys!