Each country has its own variable conditions with different coastlines…with the changing seasons thrown into the mix having the right type of surfboard can make the difference, between having a fun surf and a frustrating one.
Can you really have a one-board quiver in the UK and surf 90% of the time?
Now I surf mainly around North Cornwall all year round and picking just one surfboard for all conditions is not an easy choice. Your standard of surfing, weight and style inevitably come into play – but for the average surfer who likes shorter boards I do think it is possible to buy one surfboard that you can surf most days.
Think about the typical surf conditions
If your thinking about a one board quiver, ponder on the typical surf conditions we get here in the UK.
In North Cornwall the surf is usually waist high up to 1-2ft overhead and the spots are mainly beach-breaks. Maybe once every 3-4weeks those waves will go super-clean, hollow and offshore but that is rare. So a bit more width and volume in a shortboard will help with those junky onshore days and allow you to surf more often.
So if you are not a pro who can bust airs on 5’11 blades but are of a reasonable standard – in that you can duck dive, surf down the line, do a few little turns and are happy to surf some overhead waves – then in my opinion you’d be wise to think about hybrid shortboards and fish surfboards.
Which shortboard or fish?
Now there are many boards that can fall into this criteria but if you consider a couple of factors such as volume and the ability to get out back and surf overhead waves you narrow things down a bit.
The small fish
I’d recommend making sure that a fish surfboard is small enough to be fast and that you can duck dive it easily on those overhead days – most fish surfboards I have tried over 6’4 are pretty difficult to duck dive in heavier surf.
The bigger shortboard
On the flipside make sure a shortboard is not too short so that you can still catch waves when the surf is small. As a rule of thumb go for more width on a shortboard if its under 6’2 or go for more length if its a narrower shortboard.
Here are my suggestions from six manufacturers for surfboards that I believe should be good in 90% of the conditions we get in Cornwall for a surfer of average ability.
– Al Merrick: 6’3-6’4 Flyer, 6’0 Dumpster Diver
– JS: 6’0 Black Box, 6’0 Nitro, 6’4 – 6’6 Occy
– 7S: 6’0 Superfish
– JC: 6’4 Pete Mel Machine (Surftech), Flying Pig 6’2 Surfboard ( Surftech)
– Firewire: 6’2 – 6’4 Alternator, 5’10 – 6’0 Dominator/ Spitfire
– Santa Cruz: 6’0 Ozzie, 6’2 Pumpkin Seed, 6’0 Bertleman Twin Fin
– Rusty: 6’6 Rusty Predator
– Aloha: 6’6 AF2 Turbo Surfboard
* If you are under 10 1/2 stone in weight you can go a little smaller. If you weigh over 12 stone, then go a little bigger.
What do you think?
Are there any surfboards that should definitely be on this list? Let me know in the comments box below!
BTW – I’m not being paid to plug these boards 🙂