Southern Dreaming

By Matt Loft


Some of the best dreams are those dreams that have the most beautiful wonderful things followed closely with the some of the darkest, scariest things usually not far around the corner.

South Australia provides a similar scenario to these dreams but in a cold hard reality, if you are willing to jump into the great Southern Ocean.

You’ve got to travel an equal distance from all the extremities of this country to reach your destination. Some blokes got in their car and travelled for 25 hours from Margret River, a couple came from the the Gold Coast and a few more from the mighty Gong in a similar amount of time. Somehow it has taken us four months but that’s another story.

There isn’t much here if you are looking for a hospitable environment with trees and fresh water but that’s not to say it isn’t beautiful. The desert holds a magic of its own, white rolling sand dunes as far as the eye can see, limestone cliffs that reveal the roots of ancient bushes, air so clean and unpolluted in every sense. All of this being shaped and worked by the relentless beatings of the southern ocean. Massive fronts travel up from Antarctica into The Bight bringing with them howling winds and a raging ocean. But after every storm there is a change, the winds turn and blow steadily off the desert, the rage turns to a steady heaving pulse that lights up the shore line with waves that I would usually dream of. The blue is such an intense, deep blue, filled with so much energy and life. And it is this life in this dreamy place that generally scares the shit out of me, and most other normal humans.

The locals know them as big Jonahs; scientists call them Carcharodon carcharias and the rest of the world calls them Great White Sharks. These guys rule this ocean and keep the crowd numbers at bay, keeping them out of the water by fear or just eating someone every now and again. This is the dark side to this dreamy place but I’ve been blessed with an addiction to surfing, and so while there are beautiful waves presenting themselves flirtatiously just beyond the shoreline I will cross my fingers and take my chance just to be able to experience the magic of surfing.

In the meantime, here are a couple of empty waves I managed to capture and we can all dream about surfing them with the help of Black Sabbath.