From the coast to the top of Kosci, Guy and his mates rode it all in a single day.
About 5 years ago I was on my first big international trip with a 4-month stint around New Zealand.
My good mate Zac and I had spent a couple of months travelling, working, and chasing waves around the South Island before we decided to do a little island hop to the North to chase a swell.
We ended up setting up camp in the beautiful town of Taranaki and lucked into some of the best waves we’d had all trip.
I remember being out in the surf and talking to one of the local surfers about how epic it was that you were able to see the snow-covered mountain of Taranaki while you were surfing. He laughed and told me that him and his mates had in fact already snowboarded down the mountain earlier that morning. It was something they tried to do every winter when conditions were right: The Snowboard to Surf Combo.
For a long time since I’ve dreamed of doing that double combo in one day and it wasn’t until recently that I realised it was very much possible to do in Australia.
Luckily enough, a few weeks ago there was an incredible late-season dump that crossed over with a nice south swell down the coast. I was going to do anything I could to turn this dream into a reality.
I didn’t need to do much convincing to get Zac and another friend Wil to join. We packed my Subaru to the brim with surfboards, wetsuits, snowboards, avalanche gear, and a couple of tents, and set off on our mission.
We headed far south and after a big day of driving we pulled up just north of the Victorian border at about 9pm. We lugged our surfboards and tents down to this secluded beach and set up camp for the night.
We woke up on the beach, crawled out of our tent at first light to find a fun left-hand wave peeling off the north headland. It wasn’t as big as I’d hoped but it still looked very rippable.
Zac grabbed his board, I set up my water housing, and we shared a super fun 2-hour session together. We even swapped camera and board for few waves just so I could get my fix.
As the sun began to rise higher it was time for us to hit the road. We caffeinated our bodies, packed up camp and set off en route to the Snowy Mountains.
Into The Backcountry
We met up with some fellow Northern Beaches boys, Owen, Dave and Joel, at the foot of the Snowies and started our long hike into the backcountry.
There was barely a cloud in the sky, the mountains were covered in fresh snow and spirits were high… until we realised we’d left our bottle of Fireball in the car. But as hard as it was to leave her behind, we made the decision to push on.
After a few hours of trudging through the snow we’d made it. There we were at the summit of Mount Kosciuszko strapping into our snowboards, about to ride down the mountain to set up camp for the next few nights.
Owen surprised us with a few extra beers once we’d finished digging out our campsite and never had I thought the combo of beers and a dehydrated meal could taste so good.
The next few days were absolutely incredible and it was definitely some of the best riding I’ve done in Australia. Mixed in were some freezing river dips, plenty of sore feet and blisters, and some very sunburnt faces. Safe to say we had a bloody amazing time.
One for the books that’s for sure. I can’t wait to do it all over again next year!