The Surf of Scotland | Water of Life

The water of life cleanses all. An afternoon dram can wash away the previous night's sins, much like baptism in brusque Scottish water. There are waves in Dunbar and Josh, co-owner of Coast to Coast surf schools takes us to them for penance.

I hop out for a quick session at a crumbly, slow beachbreak. The waves are small but fun and it feels great to paddle surf again after exploring inland waterways for five days.

Josh is a local's local. He understands the tides here like a driver knows curves in the road. And he has a habit of driving those curves from spot to spot in a dilapidated, but well-loved van, while wearing a tattered wetsuit. Clearly the habitual behavior of a surfer.

"We have to be quick," he says as we drive along in our hooded wetsuits. "The tides, the winds, the swell, it all changes fast here, so you have to be there almost before it gets good to catch it."

We're headed to such a spot now. When we arrive, the wind is offshore, it's chest-high, clean and fun. We don't even have to change into our wetsuits, just grab our boards and go. We're the only ones out.

This is an excerpt from our feature story, Water of Life from SUP mag's Fall 2015 Issue. Read the full tale.