the warriewood cave club
Warriewood sucks … !
That’s what I yelled out as he sprinted past me, back around to the guillotine’s* take-off. We kind of knew eachother.
So he stopped up right away and looked over, at me .. ‘ No it doesn’t!’
Boof was always ready for it … and he comes up closer and asks the old man if he’s going to get out there. Smiles. I’m forty years up on that lad, and today Guillotines was sucking. Cheyne Horan’s girlfriend deeper than most on her mat. Hair flying on the drops.
Warriewood was like that. Then. We all kind of knew eachother.
Like the little guy at Bendalong coming out of his beaten-up Holden, hey mate howyagoin? he said to me – and we nattered on about Warriwood for half an hour. Massive sea that day, golf-course** big, huge – collers (over the channel) big, huge, good. Nobody out anywhere here.
Animal at Warriewood, wandering down the road past where the kiosk used to be – looking for some wax, anyone’s. I’m under the shower, my car boot’s open, there’s the wax. Animal always put it back though, what was left of it – he was a very active big fellow in good surf.
The Cave Club was open for three months, there were three qualified members – all colleagues.
Greg D. IT Development. Skinny, dark-eyed, mostly silent – south african.
Doug (chunk). Doorknocker. Solid, head a little busted – yank (ocean beach)
The Host. Number$. Along for the ride – aus
I took them around the circuit one by one, in the same winter. Not at the same time. Both evenings were extremely cold, the sea was a month into cold water. Both evenings a little stormy too as we pulled into the surf club carpark at Warriewood. Nobody there, less than an hour before complete darkness reached the western horizon and already the sea was black.
Into wetsuits. Down to the beach and over the rockfall scramble to the edge of the point. Then around and into the cave between the breaking waves. A shallow scrape facing the open sea. Wet to the roof. Five minutes between sets. Waves out there in the dark. Coming in.
This is where The Host pulls out The Joint and The Matches and freckles up before the next set fills the place with whitewater and washes us all away.
It’s like challenging a chicken to get roasted.
We all got done nicely.
Then out of the cave, along a low fishing ledge – into the sea and over to the subterranean tunnel passage under the cliffs – out of the blowhole at the other side and a half mile scramble around the headland to the next beach south – Turimetta – then two hundred feet up to the trig-tower on the headland and back downhill to the car.
Dinner at the Mona Vale Hotel. Snooker. Friday night football.
Finishing with a hat-trick.
* south coast rockbreak.
** golf course reef – called boulder by a carload from south bondi in 1955.
header pic of the blowhole – Brent Pearson
page pic by bukit bear –