Lil Dean Morrison wins Snapper; Mick Fanning hoists upon shoulder etc. | Photo: @thewaveofalifetime

Essential service: Coolangatta Kid and Snapper Pro winner Dean Morrison will tow you into the wave of your life for five-hundred bucks!

Includes private filmer and après-surf tutorial…

If there’s a better way to spend five hundred Australian dollars I ain’t heard of it.

Dean Morrison, who is thirty-nine, is a former world number nine, Pipe Master runner-up and winner of the Quiksilver Pro in 2003.

In 1998, aged seventeen, he won the Queensland Title, the Australian Title and World Games in the one year.

A legend in the game, the pivotal figure in the Parkinson/Fanning/Morrison triumvirate although its least successful competitively, mainly cause he wasn’t into raking his teeth across the erected cherry nipples of ASP judges.

Now, punters, you and me, can get access Dean’s skills, his jetski, a filmer and a private tutorial for five hundred dollars, three American c-notes or thereabouts.

Dean’s coaching biz is called The Wave of Lifetime. He offers, private hour-and-a-half lessons with filmer and analysis of footage, no ski, for $350, two hours, with ski and filmer etc for $500 and a deluxe pack called Wave of Lifetime that’ll take you to anywhere within a two-hour radius of Coolangatta for two days or up to a week.

His youngest client is a nine-year-old pro surfer hopeful, his oldest is a sixty-five year old who wants to keep an edge before the sands of time run out.

When I called Dean, he was fresh out of the water after an eight-til-ten session. He tells me he got into coaching three years ago and the ski came into the equation when he realised that his marks weren’t getting that many waves.

“You see results, but not really,” he says. “With the ski, they get better straight away. You can keep telling ‘em to make little adjustments.”

The way it works is Dean’ll pick you up on his ski from either the boat ramp on Kennedy Drive, in West Tweed Heads, or from little D-Bah, a crescent of sand inside the mouth of the Tweed River just before it runs out into D-Bah.

You and he will identify something you want to work on, he’ll tow you into fifty waves or whatever, following you on the ski to analyse your style, and a few days later Deano’ll send you a split-screen of your surfing, cut with a pro surfer of a similar build, to illustrate the diff, and how you can get better.

While we’re talking he Whatsapps me a sample. It’s pretty sick. An intermediate sorta surfer is in the top frame; pro on the bottom. At each juncture of the turn, Dean commentates what’s going right and what’s going wrong.

“I just want you to see what you’re doing here, mate, you’re doing great with the compression on the bottom turn, look how low you’re getting here but what I want is for you to start rotating your shoulders so that your front hand is coming behind you in that position,” says Dean. “As you’re going along and extending, start bringing that front hand here (arrow appears on screen) to square you to the lip…”

And so on, for five minutes.

“I teach the basics, compression, extension, rotation,” he says.

Watching the same surfer get a no-rail-grab backside tube is proof the one-on-one coaching works.

“Moments like that,” says Dean, “And they’re stoked for weeks later. Being able to be a part of that…”

He lets out a laugh.

“It’s such a gift. Fuck.

Greatest Day Ever: “Superbad” actor Jonah Hill chats with Mick Fanning on World Surf League’s new “One on One” interview program!

Dreams come true!

It’s now official. Santa Monica’s World Surf League, fronted by Chief Executive Erik Logan, listens to us, alongside many stakeholders, co-Waterpersons of the Year and Brazilian professional surfers on the World Qualifying Series, but mostly us.

You and me but mostly me.

I have been begging for Jonah Hill to be the face of professional surfing’s pivot to Middle America for weeks now instead of Zeke Lau or… Laird Hamilton’s Superfood Creamer. For him to be invited on Ultimate Surfer etc. and now look.

Today, he appears across from my friend Mick Fanning on the World Surf League’s new interview program “One on One.”

Mick Fanning is not really my friend. He called me a “fucking Jew” a decade ago and I have milked it for that entire ten years (buy here) but Jonah Hill is one of my favorite actors and now he is really here.

Thank you World Surf League.

More please.

Please more?

Wait, what are you supposed to say when manifesting things from the World Surf League?

Pretty South Straddie ain't a secret anymore. And less so after a two-day, broadcast-only WSL event there. | Photo: WSL/Andrew Shield

WSL launches Australian Grand Slam: two-day, broadcast-only “strike missions” with month-long waiting periods!

Signs of life rattling within the swinging carcass, faint though they may be.

Shhhh. D’you hear that?

Signs of life rattling within the swinging carcass, faint though they may be.

WSL has today announced an Australian Grand Slam, a novelty series consisting of two speciality events for CT-rated AU surfers this southern-hemi Spring.

One on the Goldy at South Straddie, the other for Margies in West Oz.

Both two-day, broadcast-only ‘strike missions’ with a month-long window. Chuck in a couple of local wildcards and a heritage heroes heat for each. Prize winner’s money goes to a charity of their choice.

It certainly ain’t revolutionary.

But it’s something.

What do you think?

Coupla things from me.

September and October’s not the best time of year for waves here in Australia, particularly on the Gold Coast.

Spring = shit.

Long flat spells and cold onshore winds. The swells slow right down and the tropical quadrants are yet to rise from their slumber.

But, signs are pointing to a La Nina pattern this year on the east coast at least, so who knows.


The announcement reeks of government stakeholders. The WSL presser has extensive comments from the relevant state tourism ministers, complete with lines spruiking economic benefits like “Only the Paluzuk government has a plan for jobs.” (You may also remember the head of WA Tourism, one Brodie Carr. I’m sure I’ve heard that name somewhere before…)

Ideally, this thing would have been announced a few months ago to make the most of the winter swell window, but ya can be sure working with two separate state governments to organise and announce twin events like this, especially in a Covid world, is no small feat.

There’s obviously been some extensive networking going on behind the scenes.

Longtom’s mate Andrew Stark is, it would appear, getting shit done.

E-Lo might wanna take note.


Covid is not done with Australia yet. Not by a long shot.

Today we announced the largest number of new cases since the pandemic began. Victoria’s copping the worst of it.

Queensland and WA are safe for now.

But, active cases are popping up here in my very own postcode, which is also home to almost half of the Australian men’s CT contingent.

Domestic travel restrictions, especially for those in known hot spots, are already being enforced.

This Grand Slam format is still a victim of the same old thinking when it comes to running a comp. A few tweaks around the edges, sure, but overall it’s just as susceptible to the Covid bogeyman as the regular tour.

The WSL will never have a better opportunity to throw the handbook out the window and try for something new during this period.

They sell themselves as innovative. Novel. Cutting edge

Is this really the best they got?

Handsomely curious surf fan seeking answers.

Listen: Britt Merrick on “crushing it” as a high-school LSD dealer and chasing sin on a motorcycle!

And from unspeakable tragedy, a new love for making surfboards… 

I doubt I have the words to express how much I enjoyed interviewing Britt Merrick, the forty-seven-year-old heir to the Channel Islands shaping throne, although not to its riches for that belongs to snowboard company Burton.

Britt lives in pretty Carpinteria, near his shaping muse Dane Reynolds (a lesson on how to correctly pronounce the town’s name is contained within the hour-or-so interview) and we back and forth on the topics of protestantism which lights Chas up for he, like Britt, believes in the popular narrative of the Jew Jesus appearing as a prophet and such, and the exchange includes a wonderful anecdote about Aimee Semple McPherson, a wild hard-loving preacheress who would chase sin around on stage with her motorcycle; drugs, Britt was busted for dealing LSD in high school, five dollars a tab, he thinks was the sale price, and talks about his Daddy and Mama’s conversion to Christianity in prison after they got busted hustling weed across the Mex border; how an unspeakable tragedy turned him back onto shaping, first, with Reynolds, then as CI’s gun shaper; and the wisdom borne from killing animals for food.

“Every time you eat, something has to die, ” says Britt.

Warning: interview contains clumsy ad-libbed ad, which Charlie describes as “legendarily awful”, something I agree with. Hits around the hour mark. Cover ears.

Listen here. 



Must Read: Stab magazine editor-in-chief Ashton Goggans pens moving tribute to his overwhelming popularity in the surf industry!

The extraordinary power of being extraordinarily popular!

I just read the most delightfully moving piece of literature and can’t help but share here. It happens to be from a “competitor” in the surf-based website space but underneath a very thin veneer of “opposition” there exists only shared appreciation for the surf journalism arts and Stab magazine’s Editor-in-Chief Ashton Goggans’ latest approaches masterpiece level.

You must savor in its entirety as it paints a glorious portrait of connectedness, popularity, proximity to heroes and, in the end, becoming a hero oneself.

A short snippet:

How sad it is! I shall grow old, and horrible, and dreadful. But this tribute to myself will remain always young and show me in a true light, beloved by all but especially beloved by professional surfers. It will never be older than this particular day of July…. If it were only the other way! If it were I who was to be always young, and the tribute that was to grow old! For that—for that—I would give everything! Yes, there is nothing in the whole world I would not give! I would give my soul for that!

Critics declare, “Magnificent and compulsively readable . . . Goggans begins where Elizabeth Gilbert and the Hollywood versions of extremely wonderful people leave off and penetrates directly to the true fascination of being super super super cool. Hypnotic and chillingly sensual, this is a post of mesmerizing beauty and astonishing force. A story of rolling spliffs with Nathan Fletcher, of talking about weed with Bruce Irons, of drinking beers with Noa Deane, and of the extraordinary power of being extraordinarily popular. It is a work only Ashton Goggans could write.”