Hastings is not known as a surfer’s paradise because it is not one. But when the wind is strong and blowing in the right direction and the tide is in there is, if you are inclined, a chance to surf. You will be confined to a stretch of beach about 50 meters in width at the end of the Stade. There the waves are compressed against the sea wall and grow in height as they race towards the beach. You’ll have about 5 seconds to enjoy the thrill of riding the wave.
I’d been on the beach for about half an hour before I noticed these guys doing their thing. They jump in, ride the waves for as long as they can before being washed up. Then they walk round to start again.
As I hung over the railing to take these photographs in the stiff November wind I wondered “What possesses these men to get up early in the morning and hurl themselves into cold, rough seas? “. The reason was evident in their rosy faces as they walked past; they were exhilarated by it.
You can view each of these photos full size on my Flickr page by clicking on them.