Feature: Meet Thea McDonald-Lee

Talking Story

SaltyLips Womens Surf Mentawai Thea McDonald-Lee Surf Girls Salty Lips

Drawing Lines

There are times when the female surf-travel community seems so incredibly tiny, where six degrees of separation appear to dwindle down to an insubstantial one degree. My chance encounter with Thea in South West France was yet another perfect example of this. I was on one of my channel hops over to France to surf and catch up with friends, when Thea and I crossed paths in a bustling French bar down a little cobbled street in Biarritz. Thea was staying with SaltyLip’s Sarah, while she was following the Womens World Tour to Hossegor for the Roxy Pro, as a writer for Australia’s Surf Magazine, Tracks. An incredible¬†achievement, to become a published writer in the surf media, an even bigger accomplishment being of the female variety in such a male dominated industry. Continue reading

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Feature: Surfest

Power, Punts and Passion

Malia Manuel Surfest Final . Photo: Nathan Bloemers

Malia Manuel

During my stay here in Australia I was lucky enough to attend Newcastle’s iconic annual Surfest…and it was a good one! With two 6-Star WQS events, the men’s Burton Toyota Pro and the Hunter Ports Women’s Classic, Surfest certainly attracted some of the best of the surfing world. After being crowned Surfest 2013 Champion, Joel Parkinson returned to defend his title along with the likes of WCT’s Adriano De Souza. as well as World Tour hopefuls and Merewether local hero’s Ryan Callinan and Jake Sylvester. And the women…well we were in for a treat with 11 out of 17 of the WCT’s women attending, only a slight disappointment with Sally Fitzgibbons dropping out last minute due to an injury. Continue reading