Splash, bang, wallop, surfs up in La Caleta

Bring me a postage stamp and a pen, I will write all I know about surfing on the back of the Queens head, still leaving adequate room for a small novel. Even after hours stood on my ironing board on the balcony, I have to admit to not having any of the skill and co-ordination of the many surfers who cut through the Tenerife waves with such grace and flair.

Mind you, that doesn’t stop me from admiring the talent of those that are at home on the foam, that’s why I headed from Adeje (see post below) to La Caleta for the 4th annual Canaries bodyboard competition. The timing was good, with the Virgen del Carmen fiesta in full swing this weekend, the sun baking, and most of all, the Atlantic throwing in some towering waves. La Caleta often has lively surf, and I noticed on arrival that Playa de la Enramada was pleasing sun seekers and bathers with fair sized rollers, but between there and the old village of La Caleta, the best and biggest waves were right on schedule at one of the jagged rocky points.

The tight bunting adorned streets leading to the sea were packed with camper vans, and every homes terrace was the setting for a lively and colourful party to enjoy the twin pleasures of fiesta and sport. Fish restaurants cling to every rocky stack overlooking the sea, the surf judges had their own little canopy set up just in front of a fishy terrace, as competitors awaited their call to take to the water. A P.A system and fog horn blast kept each surfer informed of their time slot for each category.

Competitors each paid 20 euros to enter in the open, female, drop knee or local  category, with 2,000 euros of surf gear up for grabs as prizes. A 15 or 20 minute spell to impress sounds a fair bit of time but catching the right wave and then getting back into position for the next cuts that down considerably. The coast in this area is full of sharp outcrops of rock, next to the event zone, bathers relaxed in rock pools, but the surfers in just shorts and tshirts rose and fell, and cruised and crashed in the surf without troubling the Red Cross attendants with as much as a graze.

The finer points were lost on me , I’d be happy just to stand up, but for those who want to see the full results and look out for future events, try www.fcsurf.es It’s back to the ironing board for me.