The Isle of Tiree – we have been coming here since I was at University teaching windsurfing and stand up paddle boarding to pay my way. It has a very special place in our hearts, it always provides the goods on and off the water.
Unfortunately, we havent been back for a few years and this trip was a mad dash to the ferry on a Thursday morning, no forecast checking other than to know that swell and possibly wind was on its way. Four days to squeeze in as
much time on the water as possible.
The drive over is knackering, winding through the roads of Western Scotland we couldn’t help but chat about our excitement to try the new Loco El Diablo’s out, having receive them weeks before but not had any real surf to get stuck into.
The agenda for Tiree is always similar;
1. Pack an extraordinary amount of kit into a van, every possible watersport is covered.
2. Leave at stupid hour in the night.
3. Drive like a possessed person due to adrenaline and excitement of the trip.
4. Remember to stop for fuel outside Oban (Tiree has a way of emptying your petrol tank).
5. Arrive in Oban to early to check in so sleep at the ferry until someone knocks on your window to say its time to go.
6. Get on ferry, make sure you snag a good sleeping space early.
7. CalMac breakfast.
9. Arrive in Tiree, rush to the most suitable beach, then a second and third, until you find the perfect spot.
10. Get on the water, until dusk.
11. Go camp, try to dry kit, repeat steps 9 and 10 until its time to leave.
12. Squeeze in seeing all your Tiree friends –it’s the people that make it special.
13. Hope ferry can’t get in because it’s to windy or wavey so you can call work and say you won’t be in –
has only happened a few times and tis mental when it does.
14. Drive home with a mixed emotion of a good trip that’s over too soon.
15. Start planning the next trip so you can repeat it all again.
It must be said this trip was odd, we had a huge mix of conditions but nothing epic, but still getting on the water everyday it felt a bit like a mission of testing. Both of us got to gripswith the new El Diablo’s but unfortunately they came off the roof in a mad dash between beaches.
Only down to Loco’s incredible construction there was no damage to Laura’s board and only a fin box damage to mine, it could have been so much worse. This meant I did miss a session on the El Diablo choosing to take the amazing Aztec out instead. Laura testedthe new El Diablo 5’10 kite board, tweeking fins and strap position to her preference and Toby got to grips with the 2017 Simmer Style range. All in all an amazing trip.
The Loco boards are incredible, we have to mention them as the Aztec and El Diablo combination has proved to be a fantastic mix of classic andnew school shapes. The El Diablo definitely has a place for powerful well-formed waves but the Aztec fills the void in those slightly softer UK waves we see frequently. You can’t go wrong with these boards, theconstruction, weight and shapes are top notch, to be honest it’s one of UK SUP’s biggest secrets because if more people knew how good these boards were they would be riding them in favour of bigger brands.
Final word to say thanks to Joey-T at Loco for his continued support of our SUPing, Wilie-Angus at Wild Diamond for welcoming us back to Tiree, and Farrel O’Shea for his help with Simmer Sails.
If you haven’t been to Tiree get it sorted!!