The Black Manta

Black Manta

The other day my friend Ted came out for a surf and was gracious enough to let me borrow his very first board. It must have been the way my eyes lit up when I saw it lying in the back of his pick up truck. It wasn’t until after he left that I realized how special it was that he lent it out. The day he brought it out we were stoked to get overhead perfection and after a big lunch I planned on taking it out for an evening spin. Well I was pretty wrecked from the dawn patrol and the wind was on it so opted for another day. It wasn’t until Wednesday afternoon that I got to try it out.

Spot Check

The waves were perfect at about 4-5 ft with really slow rolling sets breaking from way outside all the way through. The board is quite heavy and thick so I had no problem stroking into the set waves and making a real smooth drop. It was so heavy in fact that you had to make up for it when you paddled just to get it up to speed and make sure it didn’t hang up in the lip. As you got to your feet it almost felt like you had a brake on or something. It was really smooth and stable, but slow and seemed to match the slow swell perfectly. After looking at the skegs you can see why.

Black Manta Bottom

They seem to point inward towards the center which gave the effect of pushing water. The tail would lock into the wave and the skegs would almost hold it there so you could ride the board from the nose practically or at least the top half at all points in the wave. I found it really interesting and completely unlike any other twin fins I’d ridden. It felt like an old 70’s car my dad used to have. The big old Pontiacs or Buicks….or Plymouths. Actually it reminds me a lot of this old green station wagon my dad had called a Vista Cruiser. First car I ever drove…I digress.

Black Manta Top

I really dug the black with red stripes too. Felt like a bad ass surfing it, especially when I did a little step back to cutback from the shoulder into the foam. It was like a flashback for me and really forced me to slow up my style and just cruise.

The next day I wanted something a bit more responsive and so took out my modern version of what I now call The Black Manta. My Soul Fish from Randy French. It was a bit choppier and less predictable and so it got me where I needed to be quicker. As most of you know from Surfline.com or your own experience, the swell that started to come in on Friday and over the weekend was epic and pretty sizey. Friday I busted out the biggest board I had, which is a 8’6″ gun that a friend lent to me. It was maybe a bit overkill but the waves were sizey and they just got bigger for Saturday and then Sunday. Stay tuned for that post coming soon.

Humble Pie

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