The WSL circus has packed up and left town and the dust is begining to settle here in Hossegor. The competition unfortunately didn’t enjoy the classic conditions it has become accustomed to over the past few years, and although there were some amazing heats (like this one) we reckon the majority of the most exciting action has taken place outside of the contest arena.
The few days leading up to the start of the waiting period saw a few solid days at La Grav, serving up the sort of conditions everyone hopes to see when the buzzer sounds for the first heat.
However when the comp finally got underway, shifting banks, quickly changing conditions are a whole range of other challenges meant it never managed to quite hunt down that perfect window – where the wind was light and in the right direction, the tides on the right bank and the swell was at the perfect size and not closing out.
The images you see here should not be used as evidence that the unenviable tasks of contest director and commissioner were being done badly, as they feature rare moments of luck, when a peak somewhere along Hossegor’s several miles of coastline would suddenly light up for half an hour and a few of the whole array of talented surfers staying nearby would appear in the line up.
During the past two weeks Hossegor has not only been playing host to the top 33, but also a whole host of other top surfers, including locals, semi-locals, international pro’s and teams of free-surfing groms and we’ve been pointing our lenses at all of them. So without further ado, here are some of the free-surf highlights we’ve witnessed:
All photos Luke Gartside // @lugarts