Perth to Adelaide trip - take a surfboard?

Submitted: Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 10:52
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I'm an east coast fella but have been living in Perth for the last 12 months. I was planning to do a bit of a surfing over here but to be totally honest the recent spate of shark attacks has given me the willies, and I've been too much of a wuss to go out for a wave this whole time.

Now I'm planning a couple of month road trip from Perth to Adelaide.

I'm debating whether or not to take a surfboard along. I ride a mini mal and would rate my surfing abilities as intermediate.

What I want to know is....would I be mad to go without a surfboard? Is there loads of surfing to be had along this trip? I know there is some famous waves down at Margaret River, but what about beyond this? And if I'm worried about sharks around Perth, should I be even more worried elsewhere along the southern coast?
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Reply By: Herbal - Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 11:04

Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 11:04
The southern coast line of Australia is the (if not one of the) largest breeding grounds in the whole world for great white sharks !

On the bright side...The great whites tend to be less aggressive than mako, bull and tiger sharks.... But the great white tends to attack from beneath launching a vertical strike, so you wont even see it coming :) If it is a big one, you wont even have to worry about the teeth...cos the impact will kill you before the teeth sink in...

Have a safe trip...take a fishing rod :)
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Reply By: baz&pud (tassie) - Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 12:01

Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 12:01
Cactus Beach in the Penong area, just before Ceduna is a well known surfing area, take your board, and if in doubt don't go in.
heers.
baz
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Follow Up By: baz&pud (tassie) - Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 12:04

Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 12:04
yep, i meant cheers,
i know there is a spell check, but it would be good if we had an edit button.
baz
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Follow Up By: rocco2010 - Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 12:30

Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 12:30
Gidday

Camped at cactus beach way back in the 90s, was a great spot even if like me you don't surf or fish.

Cheers.
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Reply By: toffytrailertrash - Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 12:20

Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 12:20
As a diver from way way back just remember the Jaws theme whenever you surf in the southern waters of Australia.. Great white's back yard...


Enjoy

Merv
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Follow Up By: toffytrailertrash - Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 12:22

Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 12:22
Just stay away from the seal colonies which is their main hangout and enjoy your surfing trip...


Cheers
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Reply By: Hairy (NT) - Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 12:34

Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 12:34
Gday,

I think you know the answer already?

Are there good surf spots?.....YES
Are there sharks?.....YES
Would you regret not taking a board?........YES
Will you be game enough to go in?.....Who knows....LOL

Good Luck
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Reply By: The Landy - Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 12:54

Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 12:54
Well I’m not sure whether you would be mad to take it or not take it…

But the odds of having a car accident (please don’t!) on the way there or winning the lottery before you go are far higher than being attacked by a shark, heaven forbid killed by a shark!

In fact the odds of being killed by a shark are so low that it is almost incalculable that you’d be mad not to take it…

Enjoy!

Baz, The Landy
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Follow Up By: Herbal - Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 13:57

Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 13:57
The statistics are flawed...

Thing is, in Australia if there is no witness then it never happened !

Without quoting actual figures (cos I am too lazy to look them up). About 30,000 people are reported missing each year in Australia. About 2,500 are never seen or heard from again.

Any given lottery will be won less than 52 times...cos it is not won every week!

Many people use the old adage "more chance of being hit by a bus"... Sure, accidents happen. About 1,000 people are killed on the roads each year...but 2,500 just vanish. The bus driver is not looking at you thinking "dinner". The bus does not turn and twist with a deliberate intent of killing you and eating you.

As some one above said, these waters are the great whites back yard. The southern coast of Australia has the largest (or at least one of the largest) populations of great white sharks anywhere in the world....It's like saying you have more chance of being attacked by a dog when walking down the street. Yep sure...But jump the fence into a back yard with 2 rottweilers in there and guess what is going to happen...

I have been saying for years...there is only one difference between a person swimming in the sea and live bait...the bait has a hook in it !

hehe...I would take a fishing rod...and a very big landing net :)
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Follow Up By: The Landy - Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 14:24

Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 14:24
I've been paddling the Australian and Papua New Guinea Coastlines for over 35 years and Sydney Harbour and Parramatta River for the last 20 on my surf ski, I’ve seen lots of sharks swim under me, around me, check me out, look me up and down, so far so good – perhaps it is just a matter of time, but I work on the basis if I wake up each day that’s a good starting point, anything else that happens is incidental…

But here is the thing, if you've ever been around Clarence Street in Sydney at peak hour in the afternoon with all the buses bearing down on the Harbour Bridge, believe me, you'd take your chances with a great white in the ocean - the look on those drivers' eyes is truly menacing

And talking about hooks, I just spotted one so I'll just leave it to James to decide, and I'm betting he'll be around to recount the experience!

Come to think of it, I’ll just have a little nibble on the bait given I’m far too (old) and cunning to get hooked – are you saying that the great whites have a catch and release program, you know, catch 30,000, eat 2,500, release the rest?

;)

Cheers, Baz – The Landy
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Follow Up By: Herbal - Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 15:32

Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 15:32
No mate, no hook...

I spent several years driving trucks in and around Sydney. So yes, I know what you mean...

But the waters we are talking about are the oceans Clarence Street of great whites...and they are not just trying to get somewhere...the only thing they care about is eating and making baby great whites!

One of my neighbours lost a relative to a shark...a bull shark. I think she said it was her great uncle or her husbands great uncle. He took his horse for a swim. No witnesses, but they found remains of the horse and confirmed that the horse at least had been killed by a bull shark. No remains of the rider were ever found...Location, Georges Hall (outer west Sydney).

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Follow Up By: Member - Frank P (NSW) - Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 16:11

Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 16:11
Musta been a hungry shark and not too many swimmers splashing about at the Bay beaches that day, Herbal :-) Georges Hall is about 20km up the river (Georges R, funnily enough :-)) from its mouth in Botany Bay.

Used to work at Bankstown Airport in the 70's to the mid 90's. There were occasional reports of sharks in the river, but I don't recall an attack while I was there. There's a waterski club just downstream from Georges Hall.

Over the years we had a couple of emergency "landings" by light aircraft in the river, too. All persons recovered wet and shaken with all limbs attached :-)

Cheers
FrankP

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Follow Up By: Herbal - Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 17:25

Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 17:25
That is right...20km or so inland. But that is nothing for a bull shark ! They have been noted in waters 100's of km inland...ANY water directly linked to the sea, can and will hold bull sharks. They are quite happy in salt or fresh water ;)

Yes, Bankstown AP is quite near Georges Hall.

When I was a kid, we lived at East Hills, just a bit south of Georges Hall. As a kid I often saw very large "fish" in the river. I used to get a smack across the ear for telling fibs. That was in the 70's...That is what started the conversation with my neighbour...The horse shark attack with rider listed as "missing" happened in the 50's.
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Follow Up By: Member - Rob D (NSW) - Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 21:29

Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 21:29
Statistics prove that the average Australian has one breast and one testicle.
If you relax at a faster pace you can get more relaxation in for a given time.
Regards Rob

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Follow Up By: The Landy - Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 23:11

Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 23:11
Hey James

Live the Dream mate, be a Dream Catcher...

Go for it…just remember, those that don't think it can be done, or shouldn't be done, shouldn't bother the person doing it…!

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Reply By: pop2jocem - Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 17:30

Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 17:30
As a much younger fella myself and a couple of mates would pack the cars and head for the SW corner or south coast of WA for a bit of diving. Spent many hours in areas from north of Perth around to the Esperance area back in the late 60's and 70's. Even hitched rides in boats to dive on reefs offshore. Never got bothered by any sharks apart from fending off the odd curious one with the end of a spear gun. There didn't seem to be the number of attacks reported back then although "reported" may be the operative word.
I'm not sure if the shark numbers are just on the increase, the number of us in the water has increased or as some seem to think we are depleting their natural food supplies so they are starting to view us as a replacement.

Good advice to stay away from seal colonies.

Would I go surfing in that area? Well I did more diving than surfing in the younger days and personally I like to see what is in the water with me (;=))

Cheers
Pop
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Follow Up By: pop2jocem - Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 17:51

Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 17:51
shark article

Some advice
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Follow Up By: pop2jocem - Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 17:56

Monday, Nov 25, 2013 at 17:56
That worked well (:=0)

www.coastalwatch.com/news/article.aspx?articleld=9660
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Reply By: Member - PJR (NSW) - Tuesday, Nov 26, 2013 at 07:37

Tuesday, Nov 26, 2013 at 07:37
In a past life I was lived to surf. My board was always the first thing packed. In fact the type of car, FB station wagon, was purchased so that the board was safe inside when not in use.

Personally if I still surfed I would never go away without it. It's a long way back to get it if you see that "perfect" wave.

Phil

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Reply By: jamesgill - Tuesday, Nov 26, 2013 at 15:52

Tuesday, Nov 26, 2013 at 15:52
Thanks all. Good to hear the range of opinins...i guess the shark issue is and always has been a contraversial one.

One further question - are many of the places one might surf along this route going to have other surfers at them when theyre working, generally? Or is it that devoid of people that i'll often find myself with the break all to myself?
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