There’s a collective sigh of relief being held around the country right now as surfers throughout New Zealand suffer one more day of torment under Lockdown Level 4.
That’s Indicators at Raglan above and it’s pumping on an Anzac Day holiday Monday. It would normally be packed to the gunnels. As Level 4 comes to an end tonight at 11:59pm April 27th, we can welcome in a whole new normal that, for surfers at least, provides a huge step forward in sanity.
But this is also our privilege to lose. Poorly managed line ups and packed carparks are going to send us all back to a place we’d rather not be. The only real difference between Level 3 and Level 4 is that we can surf and travel within our regions for work and recreation. But we still need to maintain bubbles and play our part in stamping the virus completely out.
“We must make sure that we do not let the virus run away on us again and cause a new wave of cases and deaths,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern urged New Zealanders.
“We must make sure that we do not let the virus run away on us again and cause a new wave of cases and deaths.”
Together with Sport New Zealand, Surfing New Zealand has developed this set of guidelines for surfing safely in New Zealand during Alert Level 3.
Alert Level 3 Surfing Guidelines
- Only surf at your local or closest beach to home
- Don’t surf if you’re not feeling 100 percent
- Tell someone where and for how long you are going
- Don’t surf alone, but do stay in your bubble – keep at least 2m away from others
- Surf well within the limits of your ability – now is not the time to try busting your first aerial
- Always wear a leash
- If a spot looks a bit crowded, wait, or move down the beach
- Surf, then go home – don’t hang out in the car park
“It’s common sense stuff really,” urged Surfing NZ GM Ben Kennings. “We expect a lot of people rushing to surf in the first few days and we’re sure the media and police will be paying attention. It’s in all our best interests to act accordingly. The last thing we want is our right to surf squashed again.”
“It’s in all our best interests to act accordingly. The last thing we want is our right to surf squashed again.”
If you need further motivation then check out these images of Raglan and Dunedin waves with not a single person out. New Zealand’s autumn swells are among the finest in the world and we’ve just watched swarms of them pulse through without being able to get amongst them. Let’s not let that happen again.
Alert Level 3 is everything we dreamed of, but we’re going to need to do our best to make this work.
Good luck out there …