The Inside Peak – Weekly Wrap Up 05.07.13


Hello and welcome to another edition of the Inside Peak Weekly Wrap Up.
It is an absolutely gorgeous morning here in Playa Guiones. Clear blue skies, offshore winds and postcard-perfect water conditions have combined with a severe lack of crowds to make for an incredibly enjoyable morning surf session.

This is how Tuesday morning in Guiones looks. How does your morning shape up?

After a topsy turvy week, weather wise, you could have been mistaken for thinking that we were back in the middle of the dry season (except for the lack of crowds). And with client numbers slowing down, our instructors have been able to get out for some free surfing of their own. As you would expect, they have been ripping! With surfers as talented as these guys (and girls), it is easy to see why we are still Costa Rica´s premier surf school.

Luis flies…
…and Nico gouges.
Alonso with a nice turn.
Kimber ripping on her backhand.
With a few less students around I also got a chance to try out a few boards from our massive quiver… this is the 6´6 funboard – it is a real treat to ride!

And when there are no waves, there are always fish! Alonso with one of his latest catches.

As always, our students have also been having a great time out in the water. Below is a selection of shots taken over the last couple of weeks:


Owen doing his shark impersonation.

With things slowing down for the rest of the month, this will be the last batch of SSS student photos for a little while. A few of our instructors and staff are taking the chance to head off on some mini-holidays, with El Salvador, Nicaragua and Panama the most popular destinations. Even I will be heading to Bocas del Toro in Panama at the end of the week for my own vacay, so will be resting The Inside Peak for a week or two.
But before I tip out for a little while I should come to the last, but certainly not the least, segment for the blog. Keen followers of Safari Surf School´s Facebook page would be aware of a competition announced last Thursday, whereby fans were encouraged to subscribe and register for notifications from our page (as opposed to just liking it). Just to spice things up, we decided that five randomly chosen new subscribers would be rewarded with Safari Surf School t shirts. All sounds like a great plan, right? Well it was, and it came off without a hitch… except for one important issue. Due to recent changes at Facebook, we cannot actually see the new individual subscribers for our page. We can see how many there are, but not who they are. Thanks for nothing, Zuckerberg.
But of course, we still have these t shirts to give away. So, if you were one of the new subscribers and still want to be in the competition, comment on this page or write me an email ( with your name and details… first five to do so, win the shirt! This competition is only open to fans in North America (for postage and handling purposes). So, get typing, and as always make sure you keep up with our Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for more exclusive updates and offers.
Peace and duckdives,

The Inside Peak – Weekly Wrap Up 04.29.13

Top of the morning, afternoon and evening to you all and welcome to the Inside Peak.
As we move into the month of May (Already? I know, right!), our little coastal hamlet of Guiones continues to chug along at a comfortable, easy pace. After the craziness of a few weeks ago, client numbers at Safari Surf School and the Casa Tucan have also eased. While this means slightly fewer pool-side conferences, impromptu surf sessions and bar singalongs (I promise this actually happens) for those lucky enough to be currently visiting us, it also means more time for optimum relaxation and tranquility. And, there is still a whole bunch of good times to be had, both in the water and out.

Whether it is with 2 of your best friends, or 200 of your best friends, Casa Tucan always delivers.

Anyway, let´s talk surf.
Steady pulses of WSW swell from the southern Pacific has seen a continuation of the mid-range swells from the previous week. The rain storms have eased off somewhat, only really hitting late at night and early in the morning. This means that the wind has shifted back into its standard pattern of offshore until around 10am, followed by light onshores and an afternoon glass off. With the swell not getting too crazy, our students have been able to really get out and make the most of the conditions.

Owen going through some on the beach, last minute theory before hitting the waves.
Nice drop on an outside bomb.
This move is called ´the dropped wallet´.

James at Surfing Nosara has again delivered the goods with his exclusive, weekly Safari Surf School video. This week´s edition also has some older footage from some of the big swells to hit earlier in the month, and it definitely worth a look if you haven´t seen it already.

Meanwhile, an awesome collaboration between Safari Surf School and our friends at HKTK clothing and apparel has resulted in a new range of SSS rash vests for our instructors that use 100% vegetable-based inks in the screen printing process. These inks contain absolutely zero environmentally hazardous or carcinogenic content, and the printing is done here in Nosara. Environmentally sustainable projects that support the local community like this form the core of what Safari Surf School is all about, so we are naturally incredibly stoked with the outcome!

The finished product.
Zac from HKTK weaving his magic.

Be sure to check out the HKTK Facebook page for more info on their products, and to support the local surfing scene in Nosara .
Now, for a slice of nature. Yesterday afternoon, my girlfriend and I were lucky enough to stumble across (almost literally) an Olive Ridley Turtle laying its eggs on the high tide line at Playa Guiones. This is the first time I have ever seen a turtle doing its thing this far south from Playa Ostional, but I am told that it is a relatively common occurrence. It was a real treat to observe such a rare and endangered animal in its native habitat, and it really does amaze when you think how much these gals go through to reach this stage of their life. The Olive Ridley Turtles are the species responsible for the Arribada, which is the mass nesting and hatching that takes place at Playa Ostional, just north of us, however obviously this particular turtle decided to go it alone down with us gringos at Guiones. Here are a few of the photos my girlfriend took (right when I had just pulled a backhand cheater 5 on my Robert August 9´6 in the shorebreak in front of her, mind you. But just kidding, I heart turtles).

Having a dig.
Having a kip.
Locals only!

Best of luck to all the baby turtles that momma left behind last night, and if you happen to have a can of radioactive goo poured over you and turn into a Ninja Turtle, remember that Casa Tucan makes the best pizzas in town!


And on that note, I will see you all next week. Surf safe!

The Inside Peak – Weekly Wrap Up 04.23.13


Hello and welcome again to the Inside Peak Weekly Wrap Up.
Our prayers to the weather gods were answered on Friday night with the first rain in over six months falling. This is, I am sure, completely due to the will power of the millions of Inside Peak readers that I inspired to wish for the rain in last week´s blog.  Great work guys, we could not have done this without you. But in all seriousness, already the air is feeling so much cleaner and crisper, and the local flora has exploded into a million different colours.

A welcome sight.

We are now settling in to a pattern of morning sunshine and offshores followed by afternoon and early evening showers, and then mostly clear nights. Beers are tasting cooler, waves are breaking for longer and everybody is looking even more attractive than usual. It is pretty much heaven on Earth.
The surf has been a continuous exercise in excellence. Dropping down to a much more manageable size after the large south swells of the past few weeks, the shape and consistency of the waves has been ideal. With crowd numbers thinning after the craziness of Semana Santa, our SSS clients have been able to get out and make the absolute most of the conditions. Check out some of our latest photos below.

Sarah on a great left.
Andy freesurfing.
Derek, picking right back up where he left off after a year out of the water!
Elena showing some style.
Kimber and Helberth with the Kids Camp kids!
Cosmo, the lady killer.

And, as always, our good friends at Surfing Nosara have put together an exclusive Safari Surf School video with all of the latest highlights:

As many of you will be aware, surfing isn´t the only attraction when you make the trip to visit us in Playa Guiones. Safari Surf School offers a number of adventure and sustainability tours as extras to your surfing package. Just yesterday, I was lucky enough to join some holiday makers on a guided horseback tour of the coastal fringes of Nosara, starting from north Playa Guiones and travelling all across Playa Pelada and through to Boca Nosara.
With our tour starting at 4pm, an intense downfall at 3:30pm had a few of us worrying whether or not the tour would go ahead at all. Luckily, the rain cleared and we were treated to an absolutely stunning afternoon. After a quick familiarization with our horses (why the long face? etc) we set off on the ride. Feeling like extras from a Lord of the Rings movie*, our local guide escorted us across beaches, headlands, hills and mountains. A brief pit stop for a beer and sunset at Lagarta Lodge, home to one of the most amazing views you will ever have the fortune to see, was followed by a gallop back along the beach to avoid the next rain fall.

Playa Pelada reflections.
Lagarta Lodge vista.
Happy honeymooners Brandon and Jane.
Completely normal posing, perched on top of a 20 meter high cliff.

This is just one of the many adventure and sustainability tours that you can choose from when you stay with Safari Surf School, and is an absolute blast of a time. I highly recommend it.
Finally, you might remember from last week´s post that I was talking up a couple of secret spot missions that myself and a few of our instructors and clients have made over the last few weeks. Well, due to some “surfer´s code” type stuff it turns out I
can´t really tell you too much more about the waves that we scored. But, even though I have been sworn to secrecy, I am still going to post a WORLD EXCLUSIVE VIDEO from one of the trips. It is only a short clip, and definitely wasn´t one of the best waves ridden, but it still gives you a pretty good taste of the quality of this particular set up. And I figure that if you are still actually reading this far into the blog you deserve some sort of reward.
All I can say is that it is south of Ostional and north of Jaco, that you need a boat to get there and that we saw about five sharks on the trip out. But it was all worth it! This video features our resident Instructor and grouch, Owen, with filming credit going to Alonso.

Come and visit us in Costa Rica and we will show you more!
That is me done for the week, guys. As always, keep an eye on our Facebook and Instagram for some serious surf jealousy, and I will see you next week!
*Unfortunately Mount Doom and the Eye of Sauron were shut for the season.

The Inside Peak – Weekly Wrap Up 04.08.13


Happy Monday everyone!
… yes, it is Monday already, which means it is time for another Weekly Wrap Up from The Inside Peak. It has been a busy seven days here at Safari Surf School, with loads of old, new, familiar and friendly faces gracing our establishment and making the most of our facilities. Among the dozens of clients and guests we have worked with in the last week,  we have taught and tutored English celebrities, entire surfing families (x 3), honeymooning couples (x 2), real estate barons, medical scientists, teachers, Broadway producers  and IT head honchos.
We could write a story about each and every one of these fascinating individuals and groups – only problem is we would never have enough time!
But if we have to give one shout out for the week, it would be to a first-time guest of ours at Safari Surf School, named Molly. Molly came to Costa Rica by herself, with her trip given to her as a gift for her 60th birthday. In her 60 years Molly had never once tried surfing, but within only a few days she was up and riding like she had done it her whole life. Her constant state of joy and stoke in the water was absolutely infectious, and I know that all the instructors and clients that met her happier for having done so. So, happy 60th Molly!

¨This is the coolest thing everrrrrrrr!!!!!¨

Lessons this week have been running in overdrive, with twice as many guests meaning twice as many  classes. Combine this with an unprecedented amount of ´walk in´lessons, and you can understand that our instructors have been getting a real work out! I know a few of them have been averaging over five lessons a day – no mean feat when you consider how physically demanding the lessons can be.
Lunch time at Casa Tucan currently.

But of course our instructors are up to the challenge, and are still managing to deliver the same excellent level of service to each and every client – exactly what makes Safari Costa Rica´s premier surf school.
Also keeping everybody tired has been the relentless run of swell we have had at Playa Guiones for the last few weeks. As I type this the waves are on to their fourth consecutive day of double overhead sets. Our beginner and intermediate lessons on the inside of the break have been running uninterrupted, but for those looking to head out to the ´green´waves on the outside have had to exercise real caution in choosing when and where to surf. However, those that have made it out the back with the guidance of our instructors have been getting some absolutely classic rides. Particular kudos goes to Joel (the medical scientist), who seems as adept at dropping into bomb sets on double overhead days as he is at building microscopes, and to Simon (one of the honeymooners) whose first ever outside wave was an overhead backside dredger that he managed to ride all the way to the beach. Both these guys have the makings of being great surfers if they stick with it. Do you reckon you would be up to the challenge?
We have also been taking a few of our more advanced clients to some nearby secret spots that have been handling the excess swell. In the words of the great Michael Peterson: I could tell you more, but I won´t. You will just need to come down here and find out yourself!
Meanwhile, Safari Surf School Instructor Owen has continued his run of scoring incredible surfing shots. Here is one of them taken on Saturday, courtesy of Nosara Shack.

And as always, our good friends at Surfing Nosara continue to capture daily, high quality action stills and videos of Safari Surf School students. Check out some from one of the few smaller days this week below:
Katy showing some style.

A nice drop!

SSS Instructor Alonso with some of our Kids Camp Kids!

SUPs to the left, Instructors to the right, Stan´s stuck in the middle with you.

These guys are obviously not Safari students.

And when they haven´t been in the waves, our guests have as always been enjoying yoga classes, horse riding, canopy tours, sustainability tours, hosted dinners and maximum relaxation. It is a tough life down here sometimes!
Taking a break from taking a break.

I hope you have enjoyed the inside view of our little slice of paradise for this week! As always, be sure to keep up with our Facebook and Instragram (safarisurfer) accounts for daily updates and photos, and we will see you all next time!

The Inside Peak – Weekly Wrap Up 04.01.13


Welcome to latest The Inside Peak Weekly Wrap Up.
There is no real point in trying to sugarcoat it – this has been a miserable week here in Costa Rica. Freak weather patterns have brought pouring rain and howling,  onshore winds, making for terrible surf conditions at Playa Guiones. Meanwhile, the winds are sweeping in armadas of poisonous jelly fish, so that any person brave – or stupid – enough to venture into the surf is being rewarded with painful stings and skin irritations for their efforts. And to top it off the only alcohol truck servicing the town has blown a head gasket, meaning all of the bars have run dry. It can´t be too long before riots break out…

Beachgoers in full body sting suits contemplate where their next drink will come from.
Beachgoers in full body sting suits contemplate where their next drink will come from.

Just kidding…APRIL FOOLS!
In reality, Playa Guiones continues to turn on perfect weather and waves day in, day out, and thanks to some more liberal drinking laws applied to the Nicoya Peninsula this year, alcohol has continued to be served over Semana Santa (for those so inclined).
Yes, the good life ticks on like clockwork at Safari Surf School, Costa Rica´s premier surf academy.
After a solid two weeks of head high and larger waves, the past few days have dropped down to a more manageable waist to chest high. Winds have been light and variable, with a handful of days producing continuous offshores. The worst problem guests have been facing is deciding when NOT to surf, as it would be virtually impossible to catch every good session when there are literally no breaks in between.
And, our guests have been firing on all cylinders. Girls and guys, young and old (but young at heart): everybody has been ripping. Here is the latest video of Safari guests, put together by our friends over at Surfing Nosara:

Of course we have been getting daily photos too:

Safari students Clayton…

…and Stan, already killing it on only their first lesson!

SSS student Grace, catching great waves in between catching giant fish.

Party wave!

SSS student Tracey, showing off to the kids.

It has also been great to see the amount of fun our junior Safari guests are having with our Safari Kids Camp. This is an all day experience with our instructors, featuring surf lessons in the morning followed by activities such as board games, beach soccer, rock pool exploring and general hanging out. This allows the kids to make some great new friends, while Mom and Dad are able to enjoy a day to themselves.
SSS Instructor Prado giving some encouraging words to xxx

…can work up a big hunger.

Lucky Kid´s Camp includes lunch!

You can get more info on our Kid´s Camp here.
On to the Sustainability side of things, our Innovative Biodiesel Project is now up and running, producing diesel to run Safari´s fleet of vehicles. On-site biodiesel expert, Ryan King, has also made a novel addition to the system: it can now be pumped using pedal power.
I was ¨lucky¨ enough to spend a few hours ´on the bike´ the other day, after I had been caught stealing one of Tyler´s surfboards.
Alright guys, this actually isn´t funny anymore.

In all seriousness, this novel innovation makes what is already an amazing project even more so. You cannot go wrong combining environmental sustainability with exercise! Expect some more updates – and exciting news – from Ryan and our Sustainability Director, Carl Kish, in the very near future.
So that is our weekly wrap, for now. With Guiones still in overdrive for Semana Santa there will be plenty more to report when I check back in. In the mean time, we will be surfing, eating, surfing and relaxing. And we may also throw some more surfing in there, if it is possible.
´Til we meet again…

The Inside Peak – “Back in Business” Weekly Wrap Up 03.29.13


Hola Inside Peakers
Apologies for the break between my last blog post and now – some technical difficulties involving a missing passport, travel arrangements and computer access on my end have kept me away from the keyboard. I know the Safari family – and the surf industry at large – had been missing their bi-weekly hits of The Inside Peak. In fact, just yesterday I was talking to Hollywood star Ethan Hawke* at the Harmony Juice Bar, and he was saying how ticked off he and the rest of the A-listers currently visiting Guiones are for missing out on featuring in my posts.**
But fear not, I have returned. And I am sure you have all been missing me as much as Ethan has, right?
Moving on, you will be happy to know that life has continued on at its glorious place here in Guiones. We have had non-stop surf for the past two weeks, with dozens of happy Safari campers scoring the waves of their lives.  Check out some of the action in the video below:

The weather has been warm (surprise!) and the town is close to jam-packed with Spring Break and Semana Santa revelers. Casa Tucan is still pumping out good food and great vibes, our sustainability initiatives are still redefining the sustainable tourism industry (more on that soon), and our surf instructors are still the best in Costa Rica.
In short,  visiting Playa Guiones is still like visiting paradise, and as always we have the VIP seats.
Be sure to keep a lookout on the Safari Surf School Facebook and Instagram accounts for daily updates, and if all goes to plan I should have my regular weekly wrap up ready for viewing sometime on Monday morning.
*I did see Ethan Hawke, but we did not actually talk.
**However I am sure this statement is still true. FYI, other famous types spotted around town in the last week include Julianne Moore, Gislle Bundchen and Tom Brady, Leonoardo  DiCaprio, and, most excitingly, 1980s Hawaiian amateur surfing pro, Tyler Marsh!

The Inside Peak – Weekly Wrap Up 03.10.13

It’s been another week of good waves here in Guiones. Picking up from the tail end of last weekend’s solid swell, we saw some great chest to head high conditions throughout all of this week for the Inside Peak. The strong offshore winds have also stuck around, often blowing throughout the day. They have made for some excellent surf conditions, but have also resulted in the upwelling of some “colder” water to the surface.
However, it is important to remember that “colder” in Costa Rica means ‘refreshingly cool’ as opposed to ‘tropical bath’. Most guests actually quite enjoy the milder water temps, but I know a few of our more dramatic instructors were imagining they had just been surfing in 5mm wetsuits off the side of an iceberg.

How the instructors described the water this week...
How the instructors described the water this week… opposed to how the students described the water this week.
…as opposed to how the students described the water this week.

On that note, the students were firing on all cylinders this week. Shout out to student Megan for scoring the bomb of the week:
“This is going straight to Facebooooook!”

The waves were so fun, Tyler even unchained me from my desk for half an hour so I could catch my yearly wave.
The waves were so fun, Tyler even unchained me from my desk for half an hour so I could catch my yearly wave.

Owen giving out some tips:
Owen giving out some tips: “When the wave breaks here, don’t be there, or ya gonna get drillled”

And with plenty more swell – and a record amount of new students – due this week, there are sure to be a whole bunch of “bomb of the week” photos on their way!
As always with Safari Surf School, the action wasn’t just on the waves. Our Sustainability Director, Carl Kish, and biodiesel expert, Ryan King, have been working their hides off on our Innovative Biodiesel Project. The project is very close to completion, and is an absolutely outstanding initiative. You can read more about it in Carl’s blog here.
Always committed to sharing the good word of science and sustainability, Carl and Ryan took some time out of their busy schedule this week to show some grade 7 students from Nosara’s Del Mar Academy around the biodiesel project. The students were able to see the production process first hand, and with Ryan promising to follow up their visit with a classroom presentation in the near future, it won’t be long before we have a new generation of sustainability experts ready to follow in Ryan and Carl’s footsteps.
Interested students peer intently at the biodiesel producer, while Instructor Nico presumably attempts to smell it.
Interested students peer intently at the biodiesel producer, while Instructor Nico presumably attempts to smell it.

Also this week, Safari Surf School guests Megan, Tara and Dave took advantage of our Sustainable Surfer Package to check out the Barra Guiones Reforestation Project, a sustainability project created and managed by Costas Verdes. Through this project, land around Playa Guiones is being gradually reforested, after being cleared for cattle use decades ago. The Safari Surf School team is so stoked to be able to support initiatives that will have such a positive impact on the local ecosystem – and just as stoked to see guests like Megan, Tara and Dave that take such an active interest in these important issues!
Gerardo Bolinas of Costas Verdes showing SSS guests Dave, Tara and Megan the reforestation project.

To cap off the week, Casa Tucan played host last night to the HSBAcademy Nosara kid’s movie night. This is a little gig we throw every few months to raise money for the Academy. Families come along to watch some great movies on a big projector out on the lawn, and we organise the pizza, popcorn and soda – with all money raised goeing directly back to the Academy. Last night was another success, with a bunch of happy families enjoying the beautiful weather and a great movie. I had taken what I thought were some nice photos on the night, only to upload them this morning and realise that I needed a lot more flash in the dark settings! But needless to say – or display – an excellent evening was had by all, and we can’t wait until the next event. We will keep you posted for details!
That’s a wrap for this week. Remember to keep your eyes peeled for our daily Facebook and Instagram posts, and I will see you all back here in the near future for some more word on the Guiones streets.

The Inside Peak – What Makes Guiones Tick?

It’s a blustery afternoon here in Guiones. After some excellent waves this morning we are all waiting for the wind to fade and the tide to rise so that we can head back out for the afternoon wave feast.
With waves on my mind, I think this is as good an opportunity as any to take some time to investigate the surf break that is Playa Guiones in this mini Inside Peak.  In case you hadn’t realised, the stretch of beach on which we run our lessons produces some of the most consistent, best quality conditions a surfer could dream of. It works when the waves are big or small; messy or clean; high tide or low.Yep, Playa Guiones is about as reliable a wave you can get – if you had the time, you could be pretty much guaranteed to get a surfable wave here 365 days a year.
But the greatest thing about this beach is that it caters for everybody, from the first time surfer to the life time pro. Why is this so? What makes the waves of Guiones stand out from the rest? Let’s take a look.
No, I’m not talking about the local pooches down at the beach chasing after sticks. In surfing, fetch refers to the amount of swell (i.e. surf) that a coastline is exposed to. Good swells are produced by winds blowing across long, unbroken stretches of water – the longer they can blow uninterrupted, the better the swell. Surf spots along the Gulf of Mexico, for instance, have minimal fetch due to small, enclosed nature of the body of water on which they reside. Hence their (generally) crappy waves. However, take out a map and look at the Pacific coast of Costa Rica and you will see that there is pretty much no land between it and the Philippines, thousands of miles across the other side of the ocean. Combine it with the fact that it receives swells from both the North and South Pacific, depending on the season, and you end up with a hell of a lot of fetch – which equals a hell of a lot of waves.

A swell window open to both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres equals waves all year long.
A swell window open to both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres equals waves all year long.

This is an Australian term (guilty as charged) which refers to outlying crops of rocks or reef that lie just beyond the breakers. These ‘bombies’ play a number of roles: they provide a nice home for fish, serpents and mermaids; a hazard for passing pirates / Spanish galleons; and a buena vista for daring divers. But, most importantly for us, the shallow water surrounding the bombies helps to prematurely refract and mould incoming swell. Stand on the beach on a big day at Guiones and look out towards the horizon, and you are sure to see peaking (or almost breaking) swells way, way out the back. This is the bombies weaving their magic, ensuring that by the time the waves reach us surfers they have been broken up into nice clean peaks which provide both left and right hand rides. If it weren’t for the bombies these swells would more likely arrive in one big long wall and close out the beach all at once. And there’s nothing surfers hate more than a close out.
Swell refraction in action.
Swell refraction in action.

Ocean Floor
The contours of the sea bed immediately below the impact zone of a wave plays the most important role in a wave’s final form. Sudden, shallow platforms of sand or reef rising rapidly from deep water will cause intense, powerful waves which can be incredibly dangerous: think Pipeline in Hawaii or Teahupoo in Tahiti.
This is not Guiones, thankfully.
This is not Guiones, thankfully.

Conversely, if there is no real rise at all most swells will simply lap or crash directly onto the shore, providing no chance to be ridden.
What we get at Guiones, however, is a perfect combination of elements. Beginning half a mile or so out to sea (right out near the bombies, as you can see in the earlier photo showing the swell refraction) the ocean floor rises in a gentle, even gradient as it approaches the shore line. This allows the incoming swells plenty of time to build, slowing down their speed while increasing their size as the water grows shallower beneath them. By the time they reach the first line of surfers, they have developed into the quintessential Guiones peaks, offering a great rippable wall – and even the odd barrel – for the more advanced surfers, while still breaking easily enough for beginners and intermediates to hone their skills on the open face. And once they’ve finally broken, the waves then transform into a broken wall of foam, rolling in for 40 yards or more before they reach the shore. It’s on these ‘foamies’ that countless individuals, ever since Tim and Tyler guided the first Safari Surf School student to their feet back in 1999, have taken the first steps of their surfing lives.
Of course, these aren’t the ONLY factors that make Guiones so great. The waves are still fun in pretty much any wind conditions, there are no big riptides or sweeps to wash you out to sea (however that’s not to say it can’t be dangerous – the ocean should ALWAYS be treated with caution and respect) and the water is as  warm as you could want it. And of course, you get to share this all with the most outgoing and friendliest people in the world (this is an actual scientific fact) who will go out of their way to ensure get the true Pura Vida experience.
All in all, you would be pretty hard stretched to find a more agreeable piece of coastline in the world for our surfing purposes.And it’s this simple fact that will keep us coming back to Playa Guiones, time and time again.
PS Oh yeah, and we forgot to mention the sunsets.

The Inside Peak – Weekly Wrap Up 03.03.13

Flying bulls, flying trees and flying surfers? No, it’s not the plot for a 1970s acid movie, but instead just some of the highlights from another wild and wonderful week at Safari Surf School in this week’s Inside Peak. There has been no shortage of excitement here in the last few days – which is exactly how we like it!
So, where to begin?
The last week of Tico Summer* saw some promising signs on the surfing front. A steadily building swell peaked on Friday with some solid overhead sets. Lessons ran non stop throughout the week, with our current team of students making some great progress on their skills.

Nick catches a nice one as instructor Nico looks on jealously.
Nick catches a nice one as instructor Nico looks on jealously.
Megan showing some style.
Megan showing some style.

While the swell has eased off somewhat, we are expecting a new south swell to hit early next week and then stick around for a few days at least.
Some big developments were also made on our biodiesel project, thanks to Carl, Ryan and their team. Look out for a more detailed blog post on that tomorrow.
While Safari Surf School students and instructors cruised through the mid-week waves, Saturday and Sunday saw a real kick-up in pace.  First off, a big group of new guests arrived at the Tucan on Saturday, instantly enhancing the already vibing atmosphere with their obvious stoke on arriving in Paradise.
After being greeted by the ever-smiling Peter and Jasmin in the Tucan office, many of the newcomers headed down to the beach to check out the action at the Nosara Triple Crown of Surfing. This three-stage team event was in its final leg at Guiones and the host beach did not disappoint, churning out quality waves all day long. The usual onshore wind that hits during the day at this time of year did not eventuate, ensuring that the competitors had excellent conditions over the whole period. The level of surfing was outstanding, as you can see in the following shots:

A massive air in the freesurfing section.
A high-pressure floater.
A tweaked-out air reverse.

Once the competition finished up, attention turned to the nearby town of Garza which was hosting the local fiesta / rodeo. These events are held once every few months during the dry season and are attended by, well, just about everybody. Never ones to miss out on the action, the Safari crew (piloted by SSS instructor Alonso) took a busload of Tucan guests to the rodeo to sample this entertaining slice of local culture. The action in the ring was intense, and thankfully the only injuries sustained on our team were some bruised egos (PS I swear I’ll get in the ring next time, I just didn’t have my lucky red shirt last night).

And finally, as if we hadn’t had enough action for the weekend, early Sunday morning Guiones was hit by gale-force winds that upended a tree straight into the Casa Tucan pool. A free six pack to the first guest to get out there and clear it.**

Crazy winds!
Crazy winds!

*Costa Ricans refer to the dry season, December through February, as their Summer.
**Just kidding, we had the tree cleared and the pool and surrounding area cleaned immediately.

The Inside Peak – Weekly Wrap Up 02.27.13

You will usually find me around the Tucan pool and bar of a morning, post-surf. It's a pretty tough office to work from but hopefully I will get by. If you do see me around, hola.
You will usually find me around the Tucan pool and bar of a morning, post-surf. It’s a pretty tough office to work from but hopefully I will get by. If you do see me around, hola.

Buenos dias Safari Surf crew, and welcome to the Inside Peak, our brand-new Safari Surf School blog.

My name is Nick Kachel and I am SSS’s social media / PR / communications / board waxer / pool cleaner guy. Starting from today I’ll be providing regular updates via this blog, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter on all the latest happenings in the Safari Surf School world.
As the “man on the ground” in Guiones I want to provide a real insight into what being a guest of Safari is all about. I’ll be blogging about anything and everything to do with the triple S, from important surf tips to guest profiles to lesson updates. If one of our students catches the wave of the week, you’re going to see it here. If one of our instructors gets a crazy new haircut, you’ll have a photo within the hour. We want to make this blog so close to the real thing that you’ll need to be wearing sun block to read it.*
I’m really looking forward to giving you all the insider’s view of our beautiful little world – and I hope to see you down here in person soon!
*Not to be taken literally. Sun block can harm your keyboard, kids!