No Access peak_0025

Wish you were here Pink Floyd’s album Wish You Were Here – one of my favourites- was released in September 1975. The Sound radio station just had a ‘Floyd Friday’ to commemorate this. The album’s name makes me think of days when the surf is pumping and your mates are missing it. Surf is a fickle thing, it can be perfect one day then rubbish the next. My Aussie mate Andy came to NZ in 2010 with a group of surfers to make a surf movie. Andy is currently touring the FLUX movie around NZ. The thing is with Andy, every time he visits Gisborne I tell him “You should have been here a couple of days/weeks ago”. The surf never delivers for him.  When Andy and I checked out the mediocre surf at ‘No Access’, Wainui the other day, I thought back to a few weeks ago when the surf was pumping there. Maybe next time Andy…    Ô

Don & Andy

Your’s truly checking the Wainui surf with Andy

No Access pumping

…the same spot, several weeks back

stalling into the barrel

stalling for the barrel

offshore wind perfection

offshore wind perfection

empty peaks

empty peaks …wish you were here !

If you’re in Wellington tonight you can check out Andy’s FLUX movie at The Rock Cafe, 4 Glover St. Ngauranga.

FLUX movie


Okitu sand sunrise_0046

100 posts picToday’s posting is the 100th dose of The Daily Dose of the Salts. Yeehaa ! Let’s celebrate ! What began as an -almost- daily blog of mainly the beaches and the surf scene around Gisborne, has become more of a weekly blog at best. But life goes on and I fit it in when I can. (You can buy a print of any of my pics to enjoy on the days that I miss doing ‘the Dose’. Just email me details of the blog date and photo caption).

Looking back to when I began this blog, highlights over this time have been winning a photo competition with the shot below, that also featured in a tourism supplement in the local newspaper. Then last week one of my photos of the pumping Wainui surf was featured on the TV1 Weather report. One day I hope to have an exhibition of some of my best shots. In the meantime, I trust you have enjoyed my first 100 posts.

winning photo

The competition winner – ‘What would you miss if the world ended with the Mayan calendar?’

newspaper shot  I was so stoked to find that the above photo had won a photo competition at the end of last year on the theme of ‘What would you miss the most if the world does end with the Mayan calendar?’
My answer, as demonstrated by the photo, was: ‘Enjoying the early morning sunrise walks along our very beautiful Gisborne beaches’. -They liked it. And I like all the photography gear that I got for the prize!

I was twice stoked then when the same image was chosen by Tourism Eastland and the Gisborne Herald to be the opening feature in this year’s tourism supplement in the Gisborne Herald. It looks great !     Ô

pumping surf

the pumping Wainui surf last week

TV1 Weather Report

Weather Time …thanks to Ben for sourcing it from my Facebook page (permission granted)


Weatherman Sam getting pumped on my shot of the great surf

Don on laptop

‘Your’s Truly’ working on another Dose of the Salts

falling light Okitu MED_0032shadows

Being the middle of wintewinter light Wainui_0009r the days are short and the late afternoon and evening shadows are long. The last few days have been brilliantly sunny and mild – once the frost has melted and the sun has got cracking. So I’ve been sleeping through the frosty sunrises and have been catching the sunsets instead. An afternoon surf is the warmest option at this time of the year.

The ‘Red Bus’ reef at Makorori was empty and beckoned me. I left it a bit late to get out of the surf though as the sun had already dipped behind the hills. You need to get out well before dark in wintertime to save freezing your butt off getting changed in the evening chill. The 8 to 5 crew have to drive home in the dark with no chance of an evening surf at this time of the year.  That’s usually me too, but I’m on holiday this week – happy days!     Ô

clean surf

sunny days, clean surf

rubbish bin

cool ‘n’ groovey trash bin

evening shadows

long evening shadows


flaxhead in the falling light

5pm traffic

5pm, homeward bound

going Fishing_0021

Dave & Mike crop_0034There’s something fishy

about this. Steve Roberts likes fish, the colour yellow, and little waves (as well as big waves!) Last weekend the huge 8-10 foot swell from earlier in the week finally dropped away to a mere 1 foot, so Steve picked out the bright yellow fish from his extensive and eclectic quiver of boards and headed down to Stockroute for a few small ones.

A couple of us old boys were tossing up whether to bother with the very small surf. Stockies local Dave Timbs, out for a paddle in front of his house, came in and reported that it wasn’t too bad, “…Hey, at least the sun is shining, the wind’s offshore and it’s small enough today for us old guys to get out the back”. Good advice -it’s the middle of winter so we need to count our blessings, especially as we’re still fit and well and are able to enjoy the surf. Amen     Ô

aloe vera wave

my camera lies, it’s only 1 foot


Steve speeding down the line


carving up the fish

empty peak

the one that got away

 garden view

the best garden view

surf & skate

rollin’ home happy

Okitu 24-6-13


Grimmo-Okitu 24-6-13The month of June marks the start of winter and serious surf. This past week the surf has just PUMPED in every sense of the word. This photo and the one above it, taken by Wainui surfer and photographer, Gray Clapham, say it all. They are SO good I had to share them. Monday’s surf along Wainui was so big and relentless that jetskiis was needed in order to get the lucky few takers out the back to get amongst it. Most of us had to be at work so had to contend with checking out the photographic evidence on Facebook that night. For more of Monday morning’s excitement, check out pro surf photographer Cory Scott’s blog for NZSurfing

The swell has now moderated, as my shots below show. But at least it was manageable for me to paddle out today. The water temperature wasn’t too bad either. The wind was just a light offshore which kept the wind chill down. And there was hardly anyone else out. One benefit of mid-winter.    Ô

winter slash

more manageable for us mere mortals

late drop

bit too late on the takeoff

Port left

Sunday spectators

sunset surf

last set for the day

evening chill

the evening chill setting in

Inge painting2

a chance meeting

IngeI love those little surprises that life throws up from time to time. A chance meeting with Inge Jenssen was exactly one of those magic moments that my wife and I had the delight of experiencing when visiting Napier recently. Born and raised in Norway, Ingeborg came to New Zealand over 40 years ago with her late husband Finn. They settled and raised a family on the beachfront at Napier’s Westshore Beach. A daily dose of salt was all in a day’s work for Finn who was a fishermen.

Inge has a gallery on the beachfront at Westshore where she paints. She also runs a bed and breakfast in her home. Inge loves to meet travelers from all over the world. It would seem that we had discovered Inge’s gallery, and then the woman behind it, by pure accident while taking an evening walk along the Westshore beachfront  – the playground of my youth. But sometimes when we meet people it feels far more than just a coincidence. This was most certainly the case.    Ô

Westshore Beach

Westshore Beach – playground of my youth

art deco toilet

art deco toilet

bus stop

the air-conditioned bus stop

surfing signs

one of the spots where I first learned to surf


waiting for the next summer

winter solstice_0050

winter solstice

Yesterday was the shortest day – the winter solstice. And what a miserable day it was – grey skies, bitterly cold sou-west wind, wild stormy surf conditions. Not a very photogenic day, so the photo above is all you’re getting today. The only good thing about winter when you’re too broke to go skiing/snowboarding or to head off on a tropical surf holiday, is the rugby. Go the All Blacks tonight!

But the good news is, we’re now heading …very slowly… back towards summer. Hooray! Rather than celebrate all the mid-winter gloom, today I’m going to break from my usual photo sharing and post some cool cartoon images that speak to me of everything that’s great about summer, mainly through the eyes of cartoonist Bob Penuelas and his classic surf cartoon character, Wilbur Kookmeyer. Let’s celebrate the SOULstice!      Ô

Wilbur Kook Comic pg102


surfs up

surfs up


Kook by name and kook by nature !

summer crowds

worst thing about summer is the crowds

Wilbur's travels

Wilbur’s travels


see you next summer!