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The Inertia

When thinking of Mother Winter, most people think of snowfall, warm fires, holidays, family, a time of joy and a time to reset and embrace a brand new year in all it’s glory. That’s MOST people.

You see, a select few envision the polar opposite. We envision warm sunshine, cold cervezas, escaping the duties of familiar family and holiday cheer to explore all alone as solo artists. We choose to ring in our New Year as far from home as possible.

Fortunately for me, some of my best friends also fall in the “select few” category. Together, we all collectively have the great fortune of knowing Mr. Bob Hovey, an incredibly established bodyboarder and lensman extraordinaire who took the photos you see above. He also just so happens to own Duck Village Outfitters, our shop sponsor!

Bob and his lovely wife Tanya probably have more travel experience than the entire team combined, so it was these two, along with their lovely daughter Soph, who surprised us all with a team trip. Three trips that bled into one, all transpiring through those bitterly cold winter months in the frigid Carolinas. We were in search of sunshine, surf and sanity.

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As we were traveling–ten deep at times–we stumbled across countless breaks. And although naming our destinations in this tale of our adventures need not apply, let’s just say the beginning of our multi-destination travels began on an island in the Caribbean, where we were graciously hosted by one of the island’s better surfers and team DVO rider Juan Carlos “Burger” Gerena.

Thanks to Burger’s local knowledge, we caught some incredible surf during our visit, we ate like kings, and he dialed us in with the local folk, all while generously hosting our entire DVO camp free of charge at his family compound. This guy is an absolute legend and truly made our first leg and incredible experience. Here’s to you Burger. We all certainly owe ya one!

The second leg of travel was to Central America, where we were scored some super fun surf with minimal crowds. The locals we surfed with were so incredibly hospitable that upon our departure DVO team rider Seth Barrick gave away two of the three boards he was currently traveling with as a token of thanks for taking the boys in.

Needless to say, we all made some new friends for life, embracing what true travel is all about. Our emails and social media were flooded with catty hate mail from friends and family back home, where the Outer Banks of North Carolina was getting hammered by winter storm after winter storm, reassuring us all that we were right on schedule with the third leg of the trip in sight.

On our final stop was in an undisclosed region of Panama. We were greeted by incredibly fun surf, yet frustrating weather. Some of had the good fortune of entertaining the ole’ 24 hour stomach bug while others tiptoed through without a hiccup. All the same, neither rain nor runs could kill our camp vibe as reports of snow, Mother Atlantic washing well over our dune lines and across our beach roads and ridiculously frigid temperatures had us all in the very best of spirits day in and day out.

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We managed safe travels, made new friends, we bonded as a team and family, we lucked into great surf, we laughed, and we escaped Mother Winter in the frigid Carolinas. I cannot thank Bob and Tanya of DVO and my friends and teammates enough for this experience. I cannot wait to see what the winter of 2016 holds and we’ll see ya in the sea!

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