Steve Happ Photography Ramblings and dissertations

January 5, 2011

Surfing Guide to North Peru

Filed under: Surfing — Tags: , — admin @ 5:36 am

I hope that this post will help any crew intending to go to Peru looking for surf. The first thing to decide is whether to bring your own surfboard or buy one in Peru. I would suggest that either way would be fine, according to your needs. If you are coming directly to Peru, then bring your own boards. Make sure you have a decent board bag and that you have removable fins on your boards. You will be chucking the boards in the luggage compartments of heaps of buses, so some protection goes a long way. Maybe even bring some bubble wrap to extra protect your board.

For size, most crew seem to have 6’1″ to 6′ 3″. I do not really know because I am a fat old bastard and surfed on a 7′ 4″ fun board. If you want to buy a board in Peru, then there are some really good shapers in Lima. New surfboards are relatively cheap and are good quality. Ask around in Miraflores or Barranco for the board factories. Klimax and Wayo Whilar are good brands. Get a Wetsuit in Lima. I highly recommend Boz wetsuits, they are top rated. If you are only in Peru for a month or less, then just hire a surfboard in Huanchaco, north of Peru. You will get a good rate for a couple of weeks or a month (~200-300 Soles).

Lima Surf Spots

I do not know much about surfing in Lima. It is not that great. I stayed at Barranco and there is a pretty lame wave off the breakwater there. Punta Hermosa, about 40k south of Lima has heaps of breaks, but I did not get there. Bravo Surf Camp seems like an economical place to stay if you go there.


To get to Huanchaco, you need to get to Trujillo first. You can get a bus there from Lima. Then jump on a taxi to Huanchaco. Huanchaco is not that great. There are some left handers off the point but it just does not get very hollow. You can hire surfboards here for a very decent price. Otherwise, this place rocks for Cerviche. Try it.


Get the El Dorado bus from Trujillo, it goes direct to Puerto Malabrigo, which is its proper name. Everyone stays at El Hombre, which is on a hill overlooking the surf. The wave here really does go for a long way. But there are downsides – the sweep is pretty horrendous. You have to paddle your guts out just to stay in one spot. And it is not that hollow, it is more of a wall and a long ride. You can get a ride out on a rubber ducky if you have lots of money, but that is cheating.



Mancora is about the most northern surf spot in Peru. It is hot, very hot. The wave is fun and there is not much rip, plus you can surf in board shorts, which is a big novelty in Peru. It can get pretty crowded and there will be learners all over the place in the lineup. But it is a fun wave and a great place to party after a few weeks in the desert.


This place is awesome. When the swell is pumping, the main point is as hollow as you will ever see. There are 3 main places to surf, Lobitos, the Jetty and Piscinas. There are heaps of places to stay from luxury to very cheap. This place is in the middle of a desert almost, with nobody but fishermen around. It is a great place. Catch a bus here from Mancora to Talara and get a taxi to Lobitos.

Lobitos main break

That is about it. Its cold, there is always a current to paddle against, and the wind always blows from the south every day.

October 25, 2010

Lobitos, North Peru 3

Filed under: South America — Tags: , , , — admin @ 12:52 pm

More Lobitos Surf and Birds

Los Lobitos tube, Northern Peru

I really like this photo

This guy is as deep as you can get and still be seen

Something different

Some green water for a change


Oasis hummingbird
Oasis Hummingbird

ID required
Cinereous Finch (Piezorhina cinerea)

October 23, 2010

Lobitos, North Peru

Filed under: South America — Tags: , , — admin @ 8:13 pm

Lobitios surfing and birds

Bodyboarder getting tubed at Lobitos Point

Lobitos 424

Lobitos - Piscina
Chileno dude getting some sick air at piscinas

Lobitos - Piscina
Leo getting shacked in some very wild water at piscinas

Lobitos - Piscina
Leo off the lip at piscinas

Lobitos - Piscina
Nice cutback

Lobitos - Piscina
Getting some air


royal tern
Royal Tern, Sterna maxima

Black Vulture
Black Vulture

Peruvian Pelican
Peruvian Pelican, Pelecanus thagus

October 22, 2010

Surfing and Birds at Lobitos

Filed under: South America — Tags: , , — admin @ 11:32 pm

Los Lobitos Surfing and Birds

I finally made it to Lobitos, which is about 70 kilometers south of Mancora. On the way I was quite surprised to see lots of oil rigs pumping away in the desert. there is even one on the beach here. Lobitos is a deserted town inhabited only by surfers and fishermen. Its like surfing on the moon here, it is so desolate and barren.

Wide shot of Lobitos

This morning a bunch of Chilean dudes were out at Lobitos point ripping it up. They are used to these conditions, often riding cold, big waves.

A Chileno Goofy-footer cuts back

The inside wave was spitting out barrels like Pipeline. I think it may have been impossible to ride. These guys were surfing the next section along the point.

Pulls into a barrel

Conditions here are pretty tough. The wind is always blowing really hard, the water is freezing cold, and there are no hot showers. Othere than that, there is great company, surfers from all over the place just hanging out and having fun.

A backhand barrel

Birds of Lobitos

Going down to the beach this morning I was quite surprised to see a little camouflaged bird darting around the bushes.

Coastal Miner (Geositta peruviana)

These green parrot type birds were camouflaged very well against the green ground bushes next to the beach. Some had blue flashes on them.

Pacific Parrotlet (Forpus coelestis)

While others were all green.

Pacific Parrotlet (Forpus coelestis)

May 10, 2010

Byron Bay Surfing

Filed under: Surfing — Tags: , — admin @ 1:39 am

Byron Bay Surfing

The surf at Byron Bay over the last couple of days has been extremely variable. A small southerly swell has been running and there have been waves from two to four feet, which dropped a bit today. The wind has been coming from the north west yesterday and this morning which made the waves very choppy and bumpy. The crowds have been considerable with sometimes up to a hundred people out in the water at The Pass. The Pass has not changed in forty years. It still breaks the same it always has.

This guy was surfing really well. Taking off deep inside and doing some great turns and cutbacks.

byron bay surfing
Surfing at The Pass

A lot of guys are surfing fishes and they seem to go really well at times. But I have my doubts. They are very wide and sometimes I think that causes a bit of imbalance or instability. But I think they were meant as a surfboard to have fun on and that is about it.

Byron Bay Surfing
Pushing the fish around

Here is a wide shot of The Pass. I noticed today how scenic it really is. Sometimes you cannot see what is in front of your eyes or you take things for granted.

The Pass
The Pass at Byron Bay

May 6, 2010

Snapper Rocks Surfing

Filed under: Surfing — Tags: — admin @ 8:26 am

Snapper Rocks Surfing Photos.

Today I finally decided to take some photos of the surfing. The wind was from the south so the conditions were ideal for the superbank at Coolangatta. The swell was still a bit small, possibly about two to three foot at the most. Greenmount Point has been the best spot of them in my opinion, but all the banks have been pretty good. Rainbow has some good banks and behind the rock at Snapper has been doing it on occasions.

Snapper Rocks
Young guy coming off the lip at Snapper

This afternoon I took some photos of the guys surfing at Snapper Rocks, mainly because it is the easiest spot to photograph and get close to the action. There were a couple of stand-out surfers in the water, particularly this guy on his long board. He was riding really well. But at the end he lost his board and it smashed onto the rocks and he was swearing his head off. I wonder why he did not use a leg-rope? doh!

Snapper Rocks
Longboarder hanging five at Snapper Rocks

This guy got inside a pretty neat little tube, there were not many to be had, so he was lucky to catch this one.

Snapper Rocks
In the tube at Snapper Rocks

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