florida is loaded with decent surf shops. why don't you just pick one up on pensacola? or hit one on the way? that would be a much better option than picking up an online gsi.
I thought about doing this as well. But I wanted to get some advice from you pro surfers before doing so. I didn't want to get stuck with an expensive board that wasn't good quality. Thanks for steering me away from the degree 33 board by the way. There is a shop called waterboyz out there that sells boards. Thats the only shop I've come across. I'll stop there and check out what they have next time I go. Probably for Thanksgiving since i'll have a 4 day weekend.
there's innerlight surf shop, too. Both Waterboys and innerlight have their own (less expensive) in-house board brand, but I'm guessing waterboys might be the least exp because they're smaller...might wanna check both to capitalize on any deals.
once you get your board, be sure to start checking the reports for Dauphin Island, Alabama. Granted, Pensacola is the most consistent area in the panhandle, but you could shave up to an hour from your drive if DI is working...and skip some of the crowd pcola gets.
I traded my roommate a couch for it. A twin fin by Don Smith of Hawaii. All you could see of me was my head when sitting in the line up. Went to a 7'2" after that. it was those old kung fu movies where they tie heavy crap to the students, and after they're taken off the guy whoops arse.
Thanks for all the advice guys. ZaGaffer -- I'm not actually in california. I had to pick a surf area when i signed up and pensacola florida was not an option. I live right outside New Orleans and I plan to drive to pensacola every other weekend to practice surfing. I'm planning a surf trip to California next April and I didnt want to go there without any experience. Waves in pensacola are not too bad for a bigginner, just inconsistent wind swell. That being said, I love the board you posted as well as the Stewart board as well. But I cant drive out to Cali to pick one up. So at the moment my options are limited to websites that ship.
When I was a kid, I went to New Orleans to work for a while, and I brought my surfboard with me just in case I could score some Gulf waves. I lived in an apartment complex that had a lake and I paddled the board across the lake due to surfsickness, and when I got to the other side 2 hot babes took me into a hot tub. That's why they call it the Big Easy! Best food in the entire universe, but alas, no waves.
Don't know your age or athleticism, but to learn relatively quickly at a minimum:
7'-6" Egg. Epoxy if possible, for more float and so it lasts longer.
Surfysurfy.net and iconsofsurf.com ship nationwide.
If you're older, less fit and less flexible, a true longboard would be better until your fitness level improves. After all its all about paddling, timing and wave choice - not balance, in the beginning - so you're going to be paddling a lot more than surfing. Get used to it and get something you can paddle comfortably (and quickly)
New guy my advice is to go and buy something very big and very buoyant, you will need this extra volume to learn about wave placement, timing, pop up, and so much more. Plus once u get confident with moving a big board around you will ind that downsizing will feel cool and be pretty easy.
You will catch more waves and get more surfing experience on something big. I'd go with a makaha 10-9 or a 9 footer from Donald T in the pink. Or maybe a al merick performer 9 ' or maybe a Robert August long board. Just don't buy a bic whatever you do and don't go short board ish.
This is pretty much the only post I agree with in this thread. I haven't been surfing for very long so my memory is very fresh when it comes to what is best to learn on. When I started I had a 7'6" funshape, and a low-end 10'2" log. I tried like hell with the funshape and rode a lot of good waves with it, but I found that I had WAY MORE FUN when I took out the log. I was able to catch every wave, and learning how to get down the line was no problem. Get the longest, widest, thickest longboard you can find...I promise it will be WAY MORE FUN than struggling with the 7'6". Start with craigslist for sure.
Worst advice ever. Learning on a soft-top is like learning how to drive a car with a scooter.
RHCP: I've only been at this for just a little over a year now, so I''m not really qualified to be giving much in the way of surfing guidance. But for me right now, it's still about wave count. Whatever it takes: scooter, tricycle, upside-down coffee table.
I rode a used and beat-up 8-4, very high volume beginner board for 11 months before attempting to transition down to 7-0. Perhaps too big a jump, but it was a high volume board as well. After 7 weeks (late Aug-mid October), going out at least 4X/week and catching only the occasional wave, I went back to my longer board. Surf conditions were generally not good when I went out on the 7-0, and maybe I didn't stick with it long enough; but I'm catching and riding waves again and having fun. For me at 58, that's what matters most. I'll be looking for a longboard during the next year. That's just me though.