Too many times will you see a surfer on dry land bragging to their mates about a particular day where the waves were huge and clean, and how they caught the biggest wave of their life, performing an awesome manoeuvre just like they saw on TV.
To top it off they just happened to be the only person out in the water at that time. Similarly, when you turn up on a given day to check the waves, someone in the car park who is drying off will begin to explain “Oh, you should have been here earlier, it was going off.” Which brings me to my next point: what is a good surf session?
Is it when the waves are big or small, or when you catch one wave, or 30? Or is it when there are not many people in the water? Or is it when the stress of everyday life starts to flick you in the nose constantly that you just want to scream?
Guess what? The answer is all of the above. Now don’t get me wrong, there are different types of waves and within every real surfer there is a fire that burns inside, a lust to be out on a perfect wave, more spectacular than any they have ridden before.
But in reality, unless you have tonnes of cash to chase these types of waves, or are lucky to live in parts of the world where such waves are found, you are at the mercy of what the ocean brings you.
But if you ask every surfer, I’m sure they would all agree that a good surf session is every time they get to get in the water, if it happens to be on a utopia of a wave, bonus!
A keen surfer will learn the weather patterns, and through experience and local beach knowledge they will know what the waves are like even before getting to the beach. This doesn’t stop them, however, from physically going to the beach and having a look.
In Phuket the ocean can change quite quickly: in one moment small and messy, and then 20 minutes later clean and with some nice size waves rolling through.
So keep an eye on it at all times.