Every year, the boys from South Jersey descend upon the Outer Banks of North Carolina in an attempt to get tubed, grill meat over open flame, and become wizards all in one shot. It’s often a hefty ask. However, in most years’ past, the gods of liquor and swell bless the Banks with permitting conditions for all sports.
Enter COVID… Last year, while everyone else was scared. This crew packed themselves like sardines into an Avon, NC hot tub. Over titties and beer, they chatted about the possibility of extending stay(s). They learnt that they could use the scared, pussified COVID world to their advantage! Work from home was an option and when it could not be, a simple “I’m sick” text would scare any boss/manager into another 10 days of surf (don’t you tell anyone!).
So, this year. They aimed for a month. The idea for this trip was basically to start a surf hostel for the homies who visited the Banks… What could go wrong?
Luckily, the boys got one big sucker to buck up for the house. And the rest of the guys were able to come and go as they pleased. Some came for a month, while others ventured down for long weekends.
The first crew that caravanned South planned to stay the month. Stevie Cassel, Ryan Gallagher, Joey Chapman, and the glorious Sir Paps. As destiny would have it, they walked over the dunes to find perfect, South-swell conditions on the second day there. The decision to travel was immediately verified. But what was to come would knock the fucking socks off everyone on the island.
The next visitors came in bunches. Staying at the hostel was Mr. Megill and his girlfriend Tori.
“I thought her name was Jess,” said Paps.
Everyone became very concerned about Paps level of concentration–quite perturbing.
The next frothy crew to arrive for this swell was the Knoll Painting Klan. Brother Chris and Matt, as well as Claude, Jerry, and significant others (sorry ladies you’re indeed being lumped).
The conditions that came together would start a weather pattern perfectly suited for scoring tubes on OBX. For multiple days surrounding the main swell event, the boys scored in various island locales. But the main day was Mischief Night.
Uncharacteristically, there was one spot where everyone decided to surf. Volcom stickers, film crews, etc. Yet, there was no question that the waves were pumping. Southern hospitality was still present, the locals got their waves, and the visitors had no problem snagging the scraps.
Later that night, Brett Barley would blast the entire surf congregation via IG.
In fewer words: Big ass tubes.
The fellas were even able to link with some Northeast friends, BYazz and Jackson the “Mondo Man” for a parking lot chill sesh before those dudes’ 10-hour ride home.
Oh and the next day? Well, see for yourself…
Next to arrive were some characters… All separately, Mac Hollins, Meehan, Moyer, Danny P, and Dennis daBarrelkilla assaulted OBX. Unfortunately, they’d all have to wait a week for swell as the pattern prepped to repeat off the coast.
At the end of November’s first week, it was sure there was a storm brewing. Locals didn’t seem shook. But every weatherman and forecaster was calling for evacuation.
At the same time, there was another shredder duo keen on sending South. Dom and Sean radioed into the OBX Surf Hostel to check conditions. Their worst fears were realized. There would be heavy NE winds, giant swell, and possibly drenching rain. It was certain that the dunes would wash over and any who stayed would be trapped until the storm passed.
In a heroic effort, Dom and Sean stuck to their plan and made it down before weather really kicked in. While waiting out winds, they played wizards, ate hoagies, and stimulated masculine competition such as: “Drunk foot racing,” “Buy beer in a yeasty wetsuit,” as well as “Longest without shirt on.”
This kept the men entertained for a while. But soon enough, it was time to check the surf. On the height of the swell and wind, they made a call to drive into the storm. It was only possible to travel during low tide due to flood waters. So, this would have to be a quick strike.
Alas, the effort was in vein. No one wanted to surf in such conditions. However, it was clear this was no average storm. The next few days would be interesting…
The next day was quite difficult, but fully on. When in position, the lefts would reel down the beach like watching a freight train. However, it was impossible to stay in one spot. The drift had to be strategically planned from paddle out to paddle in. That day some surfers walked over a mile to get back to their spot on the beach or their parked car.
After that weekend, the road finally opened back up and it was time for Sean and Dom to go back to work. Unfortunate for them and quite fortunate for the remaining dudes… The surf was still pumping.
After two back-to-back swells of large magnitude, one would assume the Atlantic would go quite for a while. That person’s assumption would be wrong.
The next visitors were Mitch, Jimmy, and the associated girlfriends of surf hostel men. To their delight, these boys were graced with fun SE swell, light winds, and sunny skies for three days in a row.
By the end, the swell died and it was time to return to NJ and PA for Thanksgiving festivities. The whole lot went their separate ways. But all remained content with their OBX experience. From degenerate behaviors of consistent boozing, to constant laughs, and great waves–the trip was more than enough to satisfy. And thank god that was the case–NJ’s been flat since. In some shape or form, this crew will return to these beaches every year to gather and share stories around the beach bonfire at the end of each classic Carolina day.
Photo Gallery by: Ryan Gallagher, Nick Holland, Darby Fitzpatrick, and Steve Cassel. Enjoy…
In other news, here’s some more wholesome content from affiliated homies: