Night surfing

As a sport, surfing has an irritating amount of limitations; from swell to sunlight, winds and work it can feel like there is constantly some factor trying to cut away at your pursuits. However, sometimes it can be worthwhile to skip the restrictions of sunlight for an extra session and try night surfing. While it might seem like a bit of a novelty, it can be more possible than you think – especially here at the Bay. So, here’s how to score in the absence of sunlight, and how to surf safely here at Alaia Bay. 




Target a Pier

If its your first mission in the dark, finding a well-lit pier can be a great place to start. Most piers are covered in flood lights, often for fishermen (careful of the fishing lines!) making your night surfing experience pretty clear and easy. However, it can be worth keeping a good few meters away from the structure: fishing lines, rogue currents and waves can be tough to navigate. Only take calculated risks!

Bournemouth Pier
Bournemouth Pier, U.K. (Photo: Wavelength Media)

Learn your Lunar Cycles

The bright lunar light of a full moon can provide more visibility than you’d realize. However, the stars really do need to align if you’re hoping to pull this off without help from extra equipment. You’ll need to monitor cloud cover, as any clouds in the sky can distort light from a full moon, lowering your visibility. Full moon develop every 29.5 days, so it’ll pay to learn your chart to catch one of your 12 opportunities a year. Oh, and don’t forget that your swell needs to happen too!


A full moon can really throw out some light (Photo: Raymond Blunt)


Get Geared Up

As night-surfing has gained popularity, a number of companies have started to produce mountable LED lights to attach to the nose of your board. These attach in the same way that you might mount a camera. These vary in effectiveness, so it might take some trial and error – or you might develop your own system that works for you.

Surf in a Wavepool

Although it may feel like less of an adventure, wavepools often run late night sessions as one off events. This makes for a truly different experience, and is exhilarating in an entirely different way. The energy surfing a late night session at Alaia Bay is always makes for a great time. Check out what it looks like to try night surfing in the valley, here at Alaia Bay here.


If you’re after some inspiration – take a look at the Audi ‘Electric Wave’ advert filmed at Kelly’s Surf Ranch.