Welcome to the site!
Aswell as regular features and news updates from Fuerte, I am going to be using this site to promote my windsurfing clinics.
After 15 years on the island,having competed in the PWA freestyle world cup and now representing Fanatic Boards and North Sails, I have decided to give something back to the sport which has given me so much over the years.
My aim is to provide clinics "tailor-made"for each individual, with a strong emphasis on practical in-the-water instruction, backed up by on-the-beach tuition and video analysis. The consistent conditions here in Fuerte make learning so much easier and, perhaps equally important, more fun than the typically inconsistent, cold UK - why not come over for a week and improve your windsurfing by a year!!!

I can help with any manoeuvres from carve-gybe through to advanced jumping and freestyle, just email me with your wish list and we'll take it from there! Over the next few months, I am going to be video-chronicling manoeuvres which you can check out on the right in my tricktionary sections. This will give you some idea of the things we can work on, or, if you can't make it over here, you may find them useful to help understand and break down a manoeuvre you would like to learn (hopefully, the slow-mo will help in this respect!).Just click on the trick and scroll down..........
Anyway, keep checking it out as I have loads more in my bag of tricks and will be updating as and when I get the footage.
If you're interested, e-mail me on gibboinfuerte@yahoo.co.uk
See ya in Fuerte?
Stephen.............

Thursday, 11 December 2014

Lost and Found.

I know everyone is pretty fed up with GoPro videos (me included) so I apologise in advance but I just had to make this one. Scored a fantastic session in Lobos this week but my GoPro came off the mast mount after about 20 minutes and it was gone in the blink of an eye. I thought all was lost (for the 2nd time this year) but Lucy spotted a yacht moored off Lobos harbour so I sailed downwind and promptly borrowed some snorkelling kit, sailed back upwind to the main beach and left my kit there. I swam out to the reef, through the break and started searching and finally after about 45 minutes of being bashed about by the waves I saw it lying down there in 3m of water! What a bloody drama!Checking through the footage I had a little bit of windsurfing, but, more interestingly, the GoPro had chronicled its entire journey across the reef until I found it so I stuck it all together in this little video. I have since stuck a float on the back of the waterproof housing so would like to think that this will be the only 'lost and found' video I ever make...


The adventures of a GoPro in Lobos from Stephen Gibson on Vimeo.

Friday, 5 December 2014

Ding ding, round 2.

No sooner had the last storm abated than the next one was pushing it's way towards our little island. We had 3 days of relative calm before the winds picked up to 50 mph and the rain was lashing down on us once more. This was all accompanied by monstrous surf which made the entire northshore unsailable so we headed back to Rocky Point for the second time in a week or so. The waves were huge so they cancelled all the inter-island ferries (the airport was also closed because of the gales) but on Sunday a ferry tried to make it from Lanzarote and was forced to turn back when it couldn't land at this end. Check out these crazy pics as it made its way back around the harbour wall!

Wow, wouldn't want to have been on that trip!
Meanwhile, back at Rocky Point the wind was strong but gusty and I rigged up 4.5 and headed out - super overpowered in the gusts but struggling in the lulls, not very nice to be honest. The swell was so big that it was reforming in Waikiki Bay and I sailed the two reefs there for an hour before I headed out to the big stuff just as the wind decided to go ballistic! I caught some house-sized waves out there but couldn't even attempt a bottom turn as I was so overpowered, still it was impressive to be out there and experience the fury of the ocean as enormous sets rolled through closing out the entire length of Rocky Point. We later found out that some guys had sailed Entubadera just past Flag and I saw this picture from Jules Denel there, looks awesome but I think there was a lot of broken kit there that day as they struggled to get back out through the mast high barrels...
They got some incredible shots though.
As for me, I sailed Friday on 4.5 and Saturday on 3.7 but didn't have the greatest of sessions either day as the wind was so up and down with the squalls and I struggled with sail size. I even managed to snap a mast at T**t Rock (yeah, that's right, where the beginner surfers go). Still, I got some nice photos (I like the fact that you can see the seafront of Corralejo in the background) and looking back it was pretty good to be sailing different spots instead of the usual, and also to be out in totally different conditions to what we're used to. Here are a selection of shots from the two days, Friday first then Saturday...










Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Rocky Point rainbows (video)


On Saturday the wind reappeared and the remnants of the huge storm swell were still just about coming in to Rocky Point. It was blustery with the occasional torrential downpour, which made rigging not so much fun, but it was pure bliss once I got in the water. Perfectly powered on 5.0 (except in the squalls) with head high waves peeling downwind along the reef it was fantastic for both riding and jumping and we all had an absolute ball. It was a bit like being back in the UK but loads warmer :) .To cap it all off we sailed under a beautiful rainbow for about half an hour after a front pushed through - Maui eat your heart out, haha. Anyway, I'd stuck the (borrowed, thanks Basti) GoPro on my mast to try and get some pics and ended up with the following footage which I edited together with my new van music...

Rocky Point 22/11/14 from Stephen Gibson on Vimeo.

Tuesday, 25 November 2014

More storm pics.

I just got sent these photos from our session at el Hierro, seems there were photographers hiding in all the bushes! I think these were taken towards the end of the session as it looks like the wind is getting pretty wild in a couple of them. The first two were taken just as I left and give you a good idea how windy it got...










Monday, 24 November 2014

Storm's a brewin'...

Last weekend saw the Canaries on 'orange alert' for an approaching Atlantic storm and it hit us, in a disappointingly mellow fashion, on Saturday. I say mellow but it rained really heavily for a couple of days and the wind did actually get up to a very strong 60 mph just after I finished sailing at el Hierro. In fact, it picked up to that while I was derigging and I've still got some of the Saharan dirt in my ears. Probably. Anyway, to cut a short story even shorter, we rocked up to the northshore on the morning of the predicted storm and  had a quick look at La Caleta, which was small and a tad too offshore then had a spy at el Hierro, a renowned surf break which can occasionally produce the goods in a WSW or ENE and were fairly inspired by the conditions there. Last time I sailed there it was massive and I was overpowered on 4.0, but this time was nice little head-high sets and wind for 5.0 (in the beginning at least). Great, fun session with the wind and waves building all the time until, like I said, it fully kicked in while I was derigging to the point where I could only see about 2 metres on the track on the drive home. Wish I'd taken a photo actually. Luckily for me, however, a friend of mine Gwenael Marche was on hand to get some nice pics of the sailing before all meteorological hell broke loose and we retreated to the shelter of our little house to hide from the fury of the ensuing storm...






 

Sunday, 16 November 2014

A different view...

On that last windy day at Punta a good friend of mine Wieberen (Bert for short) took out a GoPro and shot some slightly different footage. Inspired by recent online documentation of surfers using a new-fangled 'mouth mount' he went out with his precious camera grasped firmly between his teeth and attempted to follow a few of the boys around at close quarters and film us. It has to have been more fun for us than it was for him, sailing for an hour without swallowing and spending the entire session with a chin covered in drool but he did get some shots of us in action. One of the main problems with third person GoPro shooting is the need to be super close in order for the footage to be anything but a speck on the horizon but he got as close as he dared and just about got away with it. In true Gibson tradition of never wasting any footage whatsoever, I edited the 3 clips into a short vid so you can get an on-the-water perspective of the action that day (although it will almost certainly lose all its quality when I upload it onto here)and also took some snapshots to flog that horse completely to death...






Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Flash in the pan.

Well, the wind did indeed come but for a very quick, one day special. I woke up to the sound of wind howling round the house one morning, sailed and then awoke the very next day to utter calm again! Never mind, it was nice to get out on the windsurf kit again after such a long rest and, although I was very rusty to say the least, I enjoyed the session powered up on my 4.0 North Hero and 89 quad. The tide was quite low so the waves were a touch on the messy side but we still managed to get a few jumps, mainly on the smaller reforms on the inside. The wind was super strong which meant that Lucy didn't have a small enough sail so she sat on the rocks and took a few snaps until the relentless wind got the better of her and she was forced to seek shelter in the van. Here they are...









Friday, 31 October 2014

Winter has begun...

Can't believe I forgot to post this photo! Like I said in the last post we had a big swell a couple of weeks ago and one afternoon the wind got up from the SW (only to about 10-12 knots) and it was enough to tempt a few sailors out along the northshore. Most people launched from and sailed at La Caleta but a couple of the boys headed along to Acid Drop and caught a few bombs along there- this is a great snap of Marcel heading back out after a ride. Pretty awesome...

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Bit too much calm before the storm...

My blog has been incredibly quiet of late and that's mainly because there really has been zero wind in the Canaries for a very long time now. The last time I windsurfed was back at the beginning of August, but since then it's been non-stop SUP perfection almost every day! I've done a few SUP wave clinics but mostly just been out enjoying myself in glassy waves and soaring temperatures- it's still not cool enough for a wetsuit yet although that is likely to change this weekend when the forecasted wind kicks in so it'll be on with the shorty and off to Punta for some incredible jumping action if I can remember how to do it! Looking forward to busting out the windsurf kit again, some of it is still brand new in the packets as I haven't had the chance to use everything since I picked it up in August. It's supposed to get windy on Sunday with some decent swell so fingers crossed...

The SUPing has been awesome so far this autumn though so I'm not complaining too much. We had a monster swell a couple of weeks ago so had some big days at Rocky Point and loads of good days at an unusually uncrowded Majanicho (that won't last). We also got a lend of a GoPro (thanks Basti) so I should be able to start putting up the odd pic again now and then, which is useful as I don't really like to post on here without photos. Speaking of which, here are a few GoPro pics from one of my morning Majanicho sessions a few days ago- glassy, head high waves and not too many out, although you still get the odd idiot with negative attitude- check out the blatant drop-in pic- that guy has been out most days with me but is sooo cool he can't speak or smile and would appear to have a total misunderstanding of surf etiquette, (and current hairstyle fashion come to mention it). Anyway, he seems to enjoy himself paddling around glaring at strangers and dropping in on people then telling them to 'use their eyes' so who am I to argue. Glad that's off my chest, check out the pics...