Stint Trips: Surfing in Sligo
Surfing is simple. When you see a wave coming, start paddling, and when you feel the your board catch, just pop up to your feet.
And wipe out.
That’s basically the gist of a first-time surf session. This last weekend, we organized a weekend surf trip to Co. Sligo for the Stint crew.
Leaving Saturday morning, we arrived at Aughris Head, Co. Sligo a little past noon. We energized ourselves with some hearty pub-fare at the Beach Bar before heading out to catch the waves.
As it was everyone’s first time surfing, it was a learning process. To battle the cold Irish sea, we would need to don armor (otherwise known as a wetsuit).
Easy enough, right?
Nope. Putting on a wetsuit might be an even more difficult task than surfing. It took us a full 20 minutes to get them on, struggling to wiggle our feet, our legs and the rest of our body into these stretchy suits.
The bodysuits were snug. We had to resist the temptation to make a cape of our towels and “fly” around the beach like superheroes.
We emerged to see the instructors in their body suits less than 5 minutes after we’d left them. I guess speed comes with experience. Either that or they keep some baby oil handy.
The pre-water lesson made surfing seem simple enough. We practiced everything, from the correct way of lying on the surfboard to how to stand up on the board, on dry land first. After about 10 minutes, we were “ready” for the waves.
The water was surprisingly a non-factor temperature-wise. One would think the ice-cold Irish sea would be a huge nuisance but the wetsuit prevented us from feeling wet at all even when we waded into waist-deep water.
It must have been quite a sight to see us surfing on what seemed like a flat ocean and wiping out. Believe me, it’s akin to seeing someone trip on a brick that’s barely sticking out of the ground.
After two hours we were thoroughly exhausted. There was no doubt we were going to be sore the next day.
After hot showers, we were ready for a hot meal and drinks. And just our luck, we happened to be there for Karaoke night!
Throughout the night, we belted out our renditions of various tunes, ranging from Shania Twain to One Direction, until it was time for bed.
We started Sunday off with a full Irish breakfast before making our way to the luscious landscapes of Lough Key, a lake in Co. Roscommon.
At Lough Key Forest Park, we spent the time with leisurely walks through the woodlands while another group of us took a boat to explore the castle in the middle of the lake.
Simply put, it was one awesome weekend with the Stint crew.