Testimonials

Sumatran Surfariis

At Sumatran Surfariis, we’ve always felt word of mouth is our best form of advertising. We take great pride in our trips, and we think no one can tell you better about how magical they are than our guests directly. The testimonials below are almost entirely unedited, usually with spelling errors (and often foul language) left in the text to assure their authenticity. The only thing we occasionally remove are names of secret spots. They come from all walks of life, and no two trips are alike, but as you can read, we’ve created the magic in so many ways over the years.

What our guest are saying…

“Hey Danny,

Just wanted to let you know how great the trip was. We scored some great uncrowded waves, thanks to Yu always putting us at the right break. Food was awesome, Eddy is a legend in the kitchen. Rido always with a smile running us back and forth to waves in the tender. Even had beers with Scuzz at Roxys. There is no doubt that SS is the best run charter business in Indo.

Thanks so much!”

Bill Geary • California

“Hello Danny,

What a trip! Still in a haze, but that was an amazing experience. The waves we surfed, the boat, the crew, Scuzz, etc, etc. Thank you! My brother and I were laying in our hotel room beds in Singapore discussing the many, many high points of the trip. Thank you and also a big thank you to Scuzz. His personality with his stoke, calm demeanor, stories, knowledge and thoughtfulness made this trip truly amazing.

Thank you.”

Andrew MacBeth • California

“Thanks scuzzy for your enthusiasm and encouragement I was totally shagged after the 10days here is a photo that all and sundry think is photo shopped.”

James Walker-Powell • Australia

“Thanks SS for the most awesome trip of our lives. 2 weeks aboard Southern Cross with pumping uncrowded surf every single day. All the crew were top notch and became more like friends by the first week. Aki’s 6th sense wave choice, Deddy’s amazing meals, Willy’s tender skills and classic humour, Fery’s attention to detail in every aspect of the boat, and Daniels smooth skills as guide – what a fantastic and talented and easy going guy. I could go on all day. Can’t wait to go back again in a couple of years time and do it all again. Sumwa ini bagus – everything is awesome!.”

Dean Dawson • Australia

“Hi Danny,

Just a quick letter of thanks to the Sumatran Surfaris crew from us on Emo’s 40th trip, once again it was awesome you guys definitely go the extra yards. To go to the Telos and Nias was the perfect call had great fun waves and some more serious stuff too. (Scuzz has a pic of Coronas barrel Guide). The crew on board were great and Yu had fully planned our trip right through to Emo’s 40th on beach, Bon fire, food, locals partying with us, fireworks it was huge! Also caught up with Scuzz on the new addition to the fleet MAHOGANY!!!! What a magnificent boat and great attention to detail throughout just beautiful. I will definitely looking into booking a trip on her.

Thanks again for awesome hospitality right throughout, take care all hope to see ya soon.”

Reg Mulder • Australia

“Just wanted to say a huge thanks for organising our surf trip this april just gone. What dream trip. All the boys were blown away by the amazing set up. Sumatran Surfariis can hold their heads up the highest in our books. Scuzz and and the crew were awesome. I don’t think I get that looked after at home! Waves were some of the best we’ve surfed and finding uncrowded spots was no problem for Scuzz. Even when we had down time there was still plenty to do. Fishing, cricket and of course drinking. Nailed plenty of push ups (Paradise). Can’t wait to get back on board and the Hog looks unreal. You better book us in for return trip at the end of March 2016. Well done boys. Words just don’t do it justice.

Scar the Brain!!!!”

Matt Ryan • Australia

“Hello Danny, what a trip! Still in a haze, but that was an amazing experience. The waves we surfed, the boat, the crew, Scuzz, etc, etc. Thank you! My brother and I were laying in our hotel room beds in Singapore discussing the many, many high points of the trip. Thank you and also a big thank you to Scuzz. His personality with his stoke, calm demeanor, stories, knowledge and thoughtfulness made this trip truly amazing. Thank you again!”

Andrew MacBeth • California

“Hey Danny,

Just a quick email with a shot for the file. Bit of feedback for yourself and Scuzz. It was our 3rd trip with you guys and arguably the best for waves and fish to date. Certainly helps when you have a dead keen fisho on board (Craig Botterill). Caught good mackie, coral trout and dog tooth tuna. Waves were great, Macca’s, HT’s and other usuals all performed.

Great service and great crew on the Southern Cross.”

Ged Hart • Australia

“Been home at the Island from our Ments trip in Sept now for a month the weather has been awful. I’ve only had 1 average surf but luckily we are all still buzzing from our awesome trip to the Ments with SS . I would like to thank you Danny for all the emails back and forth, nothing is ever a drama and your help is much appreciated. It was our first time on the Budyadhari and with Bevo as our guide let me say they were awesome, Bevo had us on the spot everyday before dawn talked to us every night planning our next move and we scored every where, the Budy is a great boat with everything you need well laid out and super comfy . We surfed all the way south to the Lighthouse then all the way north to finish at Pitstops, 15 days later worn out, surf stoked and with some amazing memories . Bevo, you have a great crew on the Budy with the swarve Captain Jap , Bujang the tireless worker, Pak Eddie Cai kept the boat running smoothly, the young greenhorn Youzha seasick for the first few days but came good after that and put in and then of course Potato your food was the best!! You are the best chef we have had with SS no doubt!!! Thanks to Scuzz for letting Proudy aka Wilson come with us his Photo/ Movie package was unreal as always and has become a great mate to all of us. Bevo had his gorgeous partner Shelley and their son Reef on board, Shelley was easy going and could swear better than all of us and Reef well no one heard him at all he just smiled all the time.

It was a huge trip plenty of duty free and extra Binnys on board we partied heaps had a dual birthday night with tequila shots at Thunders Nightspot where late into the evening Pookie Bear the reverse Mentawai Banchong made a surprise appearance a very funny night with old men disco dancing ha ha all time!! We had perfect waves with Yu and Southern Cross at perfect Hts and the legendary Monkey came and renewed friendships with a few of the boys he had been on a trip with years ago on Africa when we were at Roxys. Back in port the Jiwa rolls in the same morning as us so we got to catch up with the Governor as well and did I mention the crossing home like a magic carpet ride. Big thanks to Bevo and all his crew for having us it was truly memorable trip see you again soon.

PS: Thanks also to Bevo for helping Dav get back to Padang in time to make his Daughters 21st and Shelley for the cake for Smartie and Wellsys Birthdays!”

Ooz • The Island Elders and Oompy

“Hi Danny,

I know you’ve seen a million of these emails but thank you so much for your part in organising an absolutely awesome trip! All 10 of of us on that charter have said its the best one we’ve done. The waves, ‘Ilike’, the meals, the crew and of course Scuzz were incredible.

We can’t speak highly enough of Scuzz. What a legend! His knowledge of the area, wind, swell, tide and ability to get us to the best waves before anyone else turned up (if they did turn up, we often surfed alone) was spot on. In addition to that, what really made the experience complete was his unflapable nature, patience, entertaining stories and genuine character.

Trying not to get too carried away here Danny, but it really was a fantastic 2 weeks. I think after going with you guys we’d find it hard to go with any another company. In saying that we were hoping that you could hold and give us a price for Mahogany/Ilike for the Sept. 18 charter next year.”

Steve Newman • Australia

“To Sumatran Surfariis,

I would like to thank you for the awesome trip we have just had in the Telos. A big thank you to Carlos and Scuzz for all the organising, answering of many questions and getting everything sorted before we set sail. To our guide Davi you are a legend, up in the early hours of the morning to check winds and get us on to a break with waves as the sun rose and kept one step ahead of all the other boats to keep us surfing as the tides and wind changed. You kept everything running smoothly, with happy guests and a happy crew. Thanks to the Captain and his mechanic Ari, up at all hours motoring us around to get us on the spot, Reno and Jobell who ran us around in the tenders in any weather and were pretty awesome with the fishing rods and always had a smile. To the chef Saka and his assistant David who turned out amazing meals from the first night rightthrough to the last and the sushimi was awesome at sunset with an icy Bintang,

Everyone we spoke to before the trip had said use Sumatran Surfariis, It’s the best trip you will do. They were not wrong. These trips are the best. If you only do it once, It is the trip of a lifetime, but if you do get a chance to go again.

Do it! Many Thanks.”

Drew Hart • Australia

“Scuzz,

I wanted to just send a quick note to you upon getting back from the recent trip on the Budyadahri.

We had an all time great surf trip. Anthony worked hard and was up before the crack every day to find us surf. He made the right call each and every day. His photos were also superb and we are very stoked to have them (especially the “kids”).

The crew (Jap, Potato, Zal, Bujong and Pak Cai) was also outstanding. I was very cool to watch them do their thing running the boat – they are a great group and treated us really well.

We will be back.”

Steve Campbell • California

“Hi Scuzz/ Danny,

We wanted to throw out a massive thanks for the trip that we experienced over the past two weeks. We had an absolute ball on the Southern Cross, and fell in love with the Mentawais (excluding the Surgeons Table), our Surf Guides and the Indo crew who took such great care of us. Sumatran Surfariis delivered in a big way despite a second swell we still managed to score barrels and plenty of waves to ourselves so its smiles all around. I hope you are happy with the Frothers reports and can’t wait for the next one!”

Derek Recio • Australia

“Danny and Team,

First of all thanks again for managing to wait for me.Bevo and the crew were beyond awesome and on behalf of everyone I’d like to say thanks for such an amazing two weeks. The waves were great, the food was awesome (along with the Bintangs) and the flexibility the captain gave us was key. Uncrowded perfect waves, great people and great surf.

I am sitting at the Singapore airport waiting for my connecting flight looking at my pics, and the feeling is that I am going to be “stoking” for a long time. I will definitely be back. Hopefully soon.

Aloha.”

Sergio Oliveira • Hawaii

“Hi Danny

Just wanted to drop you a line and let you know we had a great trip and to say thanks. Yu and the rest of the crew were awesome, you couldn’t ask for a friendlier more competent crew. I’ve already spoken to a couple of the guys about doing it again, and we’ll definitely want to go with Sumatran Surfariis when we do.

Thanks a bunch.”

Forrest Cook • California

“Hey Danny,

Just wanted to say thanks for the amazing trip. We all had a really good time and definitely scored good waves. Yu is a really cool guide and the total antithesis of hype. The boat and the crew were great and both have a lot of character and experience. The food was unbelievable, I cant remember the last time I had a 6 course dinner. Boody and Potato had me in stitches multiple times. I’m 6’5″ and wasn’t sure if I would be cramped at times but I never had an issue and slept like a baby when we were parked in calm water.

I will be recommending SS to anyone who asks about boat trips for sure.”

Sean Dorn • California

“Hey Danny hope you’re well.

It’s been a couple of weeks since we got back from our trip to the Banyaks, I’ve been so busy with work it almost seems it was last year!!!Just wanted to let you know that the trip went amazingly smooth in every aspect. Everything worked absolutely perfect, all the transports were on time and well organized, food was out of this world every single time, the boat crew was great, no shortage of anything at all, just a perfect trip.

A special mention to Eugene here in copy, he must be the most professional surf guide that I have met. He managed the crew with the perfect balance of discipline and good vibe, kept all the guest amped all the time and was always keeping an eye on us all to make sure we had everything we needed and were happy. He always seemed to make the right choices about surf spots and we scored a lot of great uncrowded sessions.

I would definitely recommend you guys for a surf trip and you’ll most probably hear back from us some time soon.”

Mikel Santa Cruz • Spain

“Hi Danny,

Just got home from our boat trip on the JIWA, one word: epic. a big thanks to the crew, they were perfect. The surf guide Eugene, what can I say, I have never met anybody more cut out for a job than that man, he made that boat run like a well oiled machine. I could not imagine anybody knowing as much about swell weather and the islands as him, we had a smallish swell and the man managed to dodge all the boats and get us onto the biggest cleanest waves in the Mentawai, mostly surfing alone. Eugene is the best manager of crew and the best host, always working hard during the day, and making sure we always had a cold beer or bacari sweat in our hands.

Out in the water he always left waves for us, and encouraged me on to waves, as I told you before it was my first time back surfing in a while, Eugene new that and was always helping and motivating me. You can see the crew respect him and the visitors love him. I would go as far as saying when I return to the Mentawai I would love to go on the JIWA again, but I would go on any boat Eugene guides. I hope Eugene is a surf Guide for ever. I couldn’t imagine a boat being the same without him.

The crew Donny Disco I have never had such good food, and what entertainment watching him cook and dancing at the same time, Eddy the cap loving his coffee and getting us around safely what a man, Yoy Yoy very quite but what an infectious smile and great on the anchor picked us in every time, Lubis thanks for dropping me close to the breaks every time, don’t play this man in chess you will lose. Handry so switched on for a man that can snort a cap of Gin, you are a legend mate, I would pay to see that again. Last but not least Chris the photographer what a pleasure to meet you mate thanks for giving me tips on my camera, you took great shots and the video is epic, thanks very much man I wish you the best for your future, I know if it involves photography you will go far.

A big thank you to you all for a very memorable trip, I hope to see you all again.”

Dan (the governor) Gibbs • Australia

“G’day all;

Back in chilli Melb and had first surf in my 4/3 wettie.Bit of a shock…

Just wanted to thank everyone at Tradewinds and Sumatran surfari’s. What an awesome experience…Telo’s Ments run was everything I had expected and heaps more. Without a doubt I got more waves in 12 days than I would get at home in 12 months. As for quality of waves. No comparison… Special thanks to Eugene and crew of the Jiwa for making such a memorable trip.

P.S. Will be back.”

Rich Frommes • Australia

“Hi guys,

I have been meaning to drop you a quick line since we got back from our “offseason” trip on the Budyadahri a few weeks ago.

Just wanted to let you know our trip was totally bloody awesome and I couldn’t have had a better time if I wanted too! I know it was a long time in the planning but it was definitely worth it (thanks Slayer for putting up with all my questions along way).

We scored on everything including the weather, the fishing and the crowds. The crew were really good and the food was absolutely unbelievable….Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that we had really fun uncrowned waves too, we scored everything from 2 foot super fun Burger world to smoking 5 ft Ht’s with no one out!

Lastly and definitely not the least, I also wanted to thank Bevo for guiding us and ensuring we all had a great time. Even though he is one of our mates he treated us professionally, looked after us and worked really hard to make sure everything went off without a hitch.

Definitely planning on coming back. Thanks heaps.”

Hickey & the Southend Crew • Maroubra, Australia

“G’day Danny,

On behalf of our whole group, I wanted to send out a big thank you to all at Sumatran Surfariis that were involved with our recent trip on the BD.

It had been a few years in the planning for us, and while it’s been hard to adjust back to reality after such an epic trip, everyone has said that was the best trip they’ve ever had, with all the memories and good times we shared out there still fresh in our minds.

Danny fielded questions for about a year before we even left (I’m sure he’d heard them all a thousand times before), and also arranged some awesome accommodation in Padang when we had to change our flights only a few weeks out. The guys had everything sorted as soon as we walked out of the airport, and it was also a pleasure to meet the Indo legend & barrel master himself  ‘Scuzz’ at the office and share a few (too many) beers with him before we headed out.

The BD was epic and is kitted out with everything you could ever need for a surf trip, with Yanto and the boys serving up 3 top shelf meals every day to keep us going, and they also kept the fridges stacked with plenty of beers and Beng Bengs!

But the biggest rap of all has to go to our guide, Davi. He was all over the conditions and forecasts, and somehow also managed to be dialed into the movements of other boats and land camps, meaning we were always scoring the best waves, mostly to ourselves, which was a big deal for us. So many times we’d turn up before other groups or as they were heading off; we’d hit it, the tide or wind would change or the swell would come up, and we’d have it all to oursleves. Then we’d leave them to fight over the scraps.

When the swell dried up a bit and limited the options; no problem; instead of having some ‘lay days’ and grovelling around with other groups at the more well known spots, Davi & Scuzz decided to get us well away from the pack, and we headed off to some lesser known, far away spots that I know would be beyond most other boats/companies.

The scenery & set ups we witnessed out there were postcard stuff, with one unnamed spot turning on some of the most incredible waves we’ve ever seen. We surfed for days without even seeing another boat the whole time – which is exactly what we wanted. To top if off, Davi would either sit in the boat or on land for hours on end taking photos of everyone ripping in, and would then give us all a laugh with a slide show of the shots every few nights.

While there’s a lot of options out there & you hear a lot of stories, all I can say to anyone who’s thinking of a Ments boat trip and is reading this is to definately go with Sumatran Surfariis, as they proved to all of us that they’re the real deal – they’ll do anything and go anywhere to get you the best waves – we had the best trip of our lives!”

Dave ‘Mezza’ Meredith • Australia

“Hello Danny and Scuzz,

Just dropping you guys a big thank you for all your help over the last couple of months to get our trip off the ground after the Bohemian pulled the pin! The Jiwa was an awesome boat with loads of character and an awesome crew. Eugene was a fantastic surf guide and put us onto waves every day of the trip, he is a real character and his endless amount of energy kept the boys well fed and frothing for waves.

An added bonus was Chris the professional photog who put in loads of hours taking photos and editing the slide show for us each night, he has a fantastic artistic eye for a great shot and the boys were stoked with the slide show each night! Another big thank you also goes out to your ground crew in Medan and Sibolga who took care of everything once our flight had been cancelled out of Sibolga, that was one hell of a trip across Sumartra, one that I hope I never have to experience again but will be talked about for years to come!

Once again a big thank you to you guys and I will definitely recommend the Jiwa and Sumatran Surfariis to any body looking for a great boat trip in the future.”

Craig Hopkins • Australia

“Hey Danny and Scuzz,

So, been back to reality for a good month now, and the whole experience with Sumatran Surfariis has settled into a perfect little spot in my brain and heart, As Well as all the boys. Your operation is absolutely incredible…From Danny answering a years worth of questions from us… all the way down to the outstanding Crew keeping the Southern Cross in total order. Jap, Kaptan, Zali, Anto, and Patjai, not only did an outstanding job, but were great guys to boot! All the boys have nothing but total praise and respect to you all! Well deserved pat on the back for my fellow Buckys!

The food was 5 star every night, the coffee was spot on every morning. Davi! Thanks so much for shooting photos of our trip! You sent us home with magazine quality photos! Your guys are true Masters of the Mentawais! Lets not forget about the one and only Captain himself, Mr. Scuzz! Danny, you has said we were in the hands of the Master, and you were SO right! Thanks Scuzz!

After spending two weeks on the boat with you it is easy to see why your client base are repeat customers. Your love of surfing, life and your excitement to share that with us was infectious! You brought us to places and waves that blew expectations completely out of the water! Many Many Thanks go out to all you guys! Scuzz, Danny, Jap, Anto, Zali, Kaptan, and Patjai!

Thanks SO SO much for, as for right now, until we come back…THE BEST SURFTRIP OF ALL THE BUCKYS LIVES! We will be back…hopefully sooner than later.

Until Then, All the Best! And may you be blessed with Perfect Waves, Calm Seas, and Fair Winds!”

Matty “Blond Bucky” McKenna • Monmouth Co. NJ

“Hey Danny,

Mate, I have been meaning to write you an email since I have got back. I just wanted to say thanks for all the effort you put in with organising the trip, answering the questions & providing a point of contact etc. Personally, and I know from the boy as well, that was the best trip I have ever been on surfing or Non Surfing. Such a good place to experience and the way you guys have got it dialled on the Budy. It will be the only boat I go back to at the Ments on without a doubt!

If you could pass my thanks onto Josh for the photo’s and also guiding that trip, he did a fantastic job getting us to the right spots at the right time, with no crowds! Not to mention the Money Shots!

A special thanks to the crew as well, you guys really have a good crew of locals onboard and really fun guys to get along with as well.

Cheers mate, and hopefully I’ll be speaking to you again next year for another Ments adventure!”

Daniel “Simmo” Simpson • Australia

“Hi Danny,

Just a quick mail from KL airport to say thanks so much for all your help in getting my trip organised – really appreciate the time you took to answer my many questions. It all seems fairly obvious now that I have done a trip.

Bevo and the all the crew were excellent at their jobs. We got good surf every day – would have loved another shot at HT’s so will have to come back for that, as well as more Maccas.

I was amazed at how good the food was on board, all day, every day. The Budyadhari is a very comfotable boat and I felt right at home from the word go, thanks to a very competent captain and surf guide, as well as Das and Aroo and all the the rest of the crew. And I was very lucky to meet a great bunch of guys from New York who were very entertaining and welcoming.

Thanks again and I would be very pleased to recommend Sumatran Surfariis to anybody thinking of a trip to Indo.”

Aidan Browne • Ireland

“Hey Danny,

We had a great time on the boat, and we were very happy with Yu, he was great and considerate, he would surf after we came out from the first session etc. He also took great photos of us surfing. We also had a drink with Scuzz in Padang which was nice of him.

We are going to PNG next Jan but the year after we will be back!”

Guy Douglas • Australia

“Aloha Danny,

How can I start to say how awesome da trip was.

First of all let me say Bevo is da F#@$%^& Man!! He found us some thick offshore slabs right under everyone’s noses. He knows the right spots for whatever winds is happening, That’s a very big plus in my book. Who wants to surf onshore slop? Maybe punters? We are Barrel Riders and Bevo did not disappoint. We scored good quality waves and caught too much fish, we were throwing them back, kinda tired of eating fish breakfast,lunch,and dinner .We eat fish everyday in Hawaii so you can understand we were fished out. We want meat , were carnivoures!!

The BD Crew was excellent. Bujung fixed and patched all our battle scared boards very quickly and professional,Zul took us to and from the surf anytime and anywhere. Yento kept us energized with his awesome kitchen magic. And Das pretty much did it all, he was the all around guy.
All the Hawaiians had a very memorable experience, kinda brought everyone back to when Hawaii used to look like. That 300 years ago no buildings only grass shacks! The Mentawais is always beautiful when your out there. Big mahalos to you Danny for setting us up on the BD.

Mahalo Nui!

Parker Tom • Hawaii

“Selamat Siang,

How are things over there in Padang, hope all is well,. Just sitting here in Perth dreaming of warm water and glassy waves. I actually did a trip starting back on March 1 on board the Budyadari and have been boring people with stories about it ever since. My family is sick of me describing things as “nearly Budyadari Standard.”

Was a brilliant trip from start to finish and have always intended to give some feedback but never got around to it so better late than never. Our guide Bevo put up with my stupid questions and always got us to the best possible spot for whatever swell and wind was around, Webby, our Photographer took some great photos as well as giving average surfers like me a few motivational talks and some good tips. The Indo crew were totally amazing; the skipper Barron is so gentle with the boat, knows the area like the back of his hand and is a master at anchoring in just the right spot. Yanto made everything from the best steak sandwich I’ve ever had to perfect sashimi Mackerel, the mechanic Bujang can expertly fix everything from the Diesel motors, to Kitchen blenders to broken surfboards. Meanwhile the service from Hen and Das was brilliant and they even helped me practice a little bahasa Indonesia.”

Steve Dearle • Australia

“Hi Danny,

Cheers for organising a great trip with Bevo, crew and the Budyadahri….. All time trip.

Check out the Wahoo Kyle pulled in (the evil vegetarian) and Green Bush in fine form.”

Anthony “Ants” Bacon • Australia

“Hi Danny,

I have been meaning to email you. I wanted to thankyou so much for all your help making this trip happen for us. Ken and I both had an amazing time, waves were great as were all the crew on board. Everyone was so helpful. We got on so well with the other Aussie guys on board we couldn’t have dreamed of a better group of guys.

We both enjoyed our stay on the Mikumba so much and i am already looking forward to next year. So you will be hearing from me in a few months to gear up for next season.”

Amanda & Ken Bradshaw • Australia & Hawaii

“Hey Danny,

The trip went fantastic! Christian put us onto fun waves , and we had super light winds. First 3 days we had burgerworld as much fun as I have ever had in the water. Overhead sets , glassy, running the length of the point. First day we were the only boat there. When we told the corporate crew on trader3 they were spewing as they had had no waves at all for those 3 days! Moved to tiny HT’s, then down to Maccas for a few days where the swell steadily dropped from a very nice headhigh down to very average shoulderhigh and sideshore. Hit ht’s again on the way back, only 2 guys out with some head and a half high sets . Pulled back on a few, but made enough to be happy. So fast and shallow!

Now waiting for some solid new swell here to try out my newly improved late backhand takeoff. Christain definitely made the right choices for us, and called me onto a few which I didnt know I could make! 6 of our group were firstimers, and the trip basically couldn’t have been better for them. I’m sure there will be a repeat trip.

Thanks again to all concerned.”

Mark Inch • Australia

“Hey Chris & Danny,

Well now, its Thursday arvo Sydney time & I’m sitting here reflecting on what I would call ”the trip of my life” Where do I start ? It goes without saying that ”Southern Cross” delivered in more ways than one. First up, she’s still the queen of the ”Ments” sturdy , robust, comfortable and very reliable. She certainly earned her keep during the crossing back to Padang. More on this later. The crew on board were pure ”Indo gems” and they made my trip even more special. The biggest thing to come out of all the drama was the bonding of everyone. We saw some pretty ordinary scenes, and devastation, but at the end of it all we pretty much realised how good we’ve got it, back home & here on the SC. I know within myself, I see things a lot more differently now.

Danny, although I don’t have a partner, I would like to thank you for all your calming e-mails you sent to my sister Nanette Crawford, who in turn kept my 2 sons updated on the events that were unfolding after the quakes, All my immediate family were in no doubt , that we were safe & in good hands (Scuzz’s).

Chris, your Leadership & Seamanship are legendary, although, and I’m not afraid to admit it, I was quite scared during our home crossing, those ferocious winds & swells had the SC rocking & pitching violently for nearly 19 hrs, and all we could do was hang on and go with it. There was no escape from it. At the end of the day, or should I say night, we were anchored safe & secure although some distance from Padang. At no point did I ever doubt that you’d get us to our destination, and because of those conditions it made me realise how reliable SC is, she certainly took a battering. This trip will go down in my mind as the best ever trip, anywhere, anytime & I’m grateful that I experienced it with you guys.

We’re all legends over here now (don’t know why) all we wanted to do was just ”go surfin”. Some people go through their lives & never reach any great heights, shit guys I’m still on the biggest buzz. Remember what ”Big Arnie” said in the Terminator move,,,,,,“I’LL BE BACK”…

Oh yeah, if its any consolation, I’m still fecking rocking.”

Col Steele • Australia

“Hey Danny, Hey Scuzz,

I’m back in Paris. Just a few words to thank you for finding a solution! I got my Mentawaii fix!

The boat was great, being only 3 was of course a huge bonus… The two other guys were super cool, and Joey is a nice guy/guide! We have been treated by the D’Bora crew like special guests, super good food, and they offered us a complete Mentawaii experience, going from BurgerWorld to The Hole area. We had a big storm, got heaps of fish down south (3 GT and many wahoo), and good surf!!! We surfed 12 different breaks, not bad…

The highlight of the trip was a day spent at Lance’s left, good size and magnificent shape, with a 5 hours session in the morning (including 3h by ourselves) and a 3h session in the afternoon shared with a Reef team (including Rob Machado)!

I also really enjoyed surfing again at Greenbush (not as good as two years ago, but I didn’t snap my board this time), and Scarecrows (I stayed more than 9 hours in the water, that was the last day!).

I hope next year we’ll do a trip together.”

Professor Thierry Jeantheau • France

“Danny,

The trip went great, it is brutal being back at work now. Didn’t get any total macker swells but that”s probably for the best for a group of Indo rookies. Head high every day with a few bigger days, what more could you want?

Bevo did a great job, we were always the first ones to spots in the morning and even scored a fun secret right all alone for 2 days (no other boats). And AK was on it with the mad photo skills. Everyone brought home good stories and plenty of stoke. The Indo crew, legends, seriously the best guys. And none of us could believe how good the food was, 3 meals a day for 14 days all original, flavorful, healthy, filling feed. Right on!

Hoping to get another trip in next year or if not definitely 2011, I want to get that 7’2″ out on a big day and pull in!”

Kevin Barnett • Northern California

“Danny,

My hubby is back safe and sound and had another wonderful trip with you guys. Sounds like a pretty rough ride back into Padang, but just adds to the stories. One of these days I’ll have to make the trip with him, maybe stay at the resort for a week or two or do some volunteer work while he surfs. I feel so good knowing he is in good hands when he is so far away. It means a lot and as I stated last time, nothing beats a surfed out husband after he spends 2+ weeks on a boat with a bunch of men surfing as much as he wants. I think it maybe the key to this wonderful journey of life I am on with this man.

All the best to you and the gang.”

Lora Casey • Rhode Island

“Great to be home, straight into back to back north swells, which is always nice. In a lot of ways the whole experience seems like a dream, probably because I’ve been fantasying about the waves/region since I was a super grom and as we all scored great waves and uncrowded sessions, these surf fantasy’s were for good reason. Secondly, our group was radtastical. Everyone added positive energy and fun in and out of the water. I’m working on getting the top 10 music list resized, then I’ll scan it and send it back to you all.

Big thanks to our amazing crew who took care of us so well, Kieko for keeping our muscles smiling, the sea for it’s infinite amount of perfections. Danny for his amazing wooden boards and wicked back-side officer Hess hacks. Pierre for all the laughs. Lindsey for charging. Kassia for introducing new lingo such as Duesch Tackle. Dane for capturing many amazing moments. Mike for blowing my mind by doing the first out of the lip bodysurfing el-rolo I’ve ever seen! Harrison for pushing the Alaia’s to uncharted waters. Bevo for putting us in the right spot at the right time & T.Moe- for making this trip happen and bringing us all together.

Many thanks amigos.”

Chris Del Moro • California

“Danny,

Just got back Sunday morning and in the process of adjusting back to reality. It’s a lot harder than I thought.

Where do I start? Aloita Resort was amazing. The resort itself is beautiful and the staff was great. Incredible attention to detail. We had a great time and made some good friends.

Once we boarded the Budyadahri and met Brandon, Theo and the PR crew, the real trip started. Yu and Bevo are super cool and we got along great. To me, the waves were ridiculous, but the best part was that Bevo, one of the owners of the Budyadahri was with us and it was his first time in the Telos, and also, Yu got us to surf alone the entire trip. The only time that we surfed with some else was when the Mikumba met us at Rollins in the Telo chain, and when they got there we were already mostly surfed out anyway.

To summarize it all, this was for sure the best surf trip I have done and I am proud to say that I now have good friends in Indo. I’m glad I got there early and mostly that I stayed and extra day because I had the chance to meet Christina and spend a whole day with Yu and Bevo drinking Bintangs in the Batang Arau.

All you guys run a great organization and it was a true pleasure to be part of it. It showed in every single one of your employees. From Oci who picked me up at the airport, to Anton the chef, Hen, Jo, Bujuan and of course Baron “EL Capitan.”

I’m not sure when, but I will definitely go back with you guys to Indo.

Thanks for everything.”

Franco • Puerto Rico

“Hi Guys,

Trying to get back into normality after the trip away and got a big case of the after holiday blues, particularly when its cold, wet and raining here.

Firstly a very big thank you to all the people that were involved with our trip from everyone at the hotel to the guys on the boat, Tolong, Sojar, Iman, sedikit Eddie and Capt’n. Amadu sayang Sojar! I can’t really say enough about how good the guys on the boat were, they were just totally onto it the whole time and had everything covered. I’ve now been ruined for any other holiday away.

AK, a huge thanks for everything you did for all of us and the advice you gave me. It won’t be forgotten. Although the waves didn’t get epic, with trying conditions you managed to always find us something good to surf. Can’t really ask for much more than that. Steve passed on the tapes and CD for Jason Cooper in Victoria and I have posted to him. I spoke to him on the phone and he was absolutely frothing to see the footage and photos. AK, good luck with the development of “Tom & Gerry’s”, I can’t wish you nothing but success in the future. Hopefully you’ll stay in touch and let me know how it goes. The trip was epic for me as it was something I always dreamed of doing, but never really thought it would happen. Please pass on my gratitude to all those who were involved.

Kind regards and all the very best.”

Ray Codalonga • Australia

“Hey Danny!

Just wanted to report that our trip went off the richter!!! It was truly the trip of a lifetime! The crew on the Budiyudari was insane! Bevo, Yu, Joe, Hen, and Antonio are the shit!! I can’t believe how on it those guys are! It’s like there’s never a moment when those guys aren’t working their asses off. I actually started feeling guilty towards the end, because they all felt like such bros, it was hard to let them do all the work while we did nothing. Well, once again, thanks for an epic trip. We scored killer waves pretty much every day. Between Yu and Bevo, we were on the best surf with the least crowds, the majority of the time. I sent some photos to share the stoke!

Thanks again and can’t wait to do it again!”

Matt Mitchell • Santa Cruz, CA

“Danny,

Thanks for another awesome trip. You guys have made so many improvements on Mikumba since I last sailed on her in 2006. The big fast console tinny is awesome. You’d have to be a complete klutz to slip, trip, or bash your head. Not one board got dinged in the new board racks, the fridge kept the beers ice-cold, and as soon as we would catch a fish Tu Lan would go straight to work on the sashimi for dinner. The waves were great. We never got an A+ macking scary indo day but given conditions and logistics I don’t think there was one to be had. I surfed all but one day and got barreled almost every day. Huge credit to AK and the crew for putting us on the best waves available with no boats around right at the crack of dawn.

The guys on the trip all got along great – a fun, mellow group. I was worried that 10 guys would be a porta-crowd but we were hardly ever in the water all at once, generally it seemed like we were split across two nearby spots – that two-tender advantage again! Toward the end we talked about going together again next year. It’s harder to find friends in California who have the commitment to go to indo than it is to meet new people in Indo that I get along with great!

My best wave of the trip was at Slayer’s on the second day – a double-barrel spitter that starts the 5th row down in the surfing gallery. Your namesake is a killer wave in a magical setting. I’m psyched that Jason was willing to sit on the beach and shoot that morning. That was a very special session, just me and a couple other guys.

What’s the Mikumba schedule like for next year? Looking at the video from that November trip to the Ments is making me consider a shoulder-season trip down there instead of going up north again.”

Ian Rhodes • San Francisco, California

“Dear Scuzz and Danny,

I know you are out there right now. I wish you every good wave! I just wanted to very briefly say thank you. My trip via Siberut was to be very honest, absolutely amazing. I cannot thank you enough Danny for your help in making my trek possible. Your care in making sure I could make it all happen was very generous and made for me, a trip of my lifetime. So thanks deep and sincere thanks…

To you Scuzz, I’m not sure what to say… I know I asked lots of dumb questions but I truly came away changed, and I am grateful for your generosity, your skilled guidance, your patience, and your honesty… I would be grateful if you would pass on my sincere thanks to Abu for his kindness in letting me get behind the helm. The boys are now sending texts and emails addressed to captain Jim!!!! I will be back to the Ments, I know that. Not sure when or how yet but I look forward very much to seeing you again. Bon Voyages! You are a gentleman, a scholar, and so much more… as I have said, you fight the good fight. I wish you every success. You deserve it!

Cheers to matt – hope his bite is ok and to Tom…I was very glad to meet them both. I will spruik Aloita to all who will listen. There are people already listening. Just reckon a sea plane would just about have the girls creaming.

Cheers Chris, all strength to you.”

Jim Lawson • Australia

“Hi Danny

Greeny here. We were on Mikumba from 25th April to 9th May 08. North Trip. I just wanted to drop you a line to say how stoked we all were with the trip, and to thank you for your help getting everything sorted. You certainly were not kidding when you said how good it was going to be!!

Great waves, great crew, great boat! I’m not sure what AK & the crew thought of 10 surfers from Northern England, probably the wierdest bunch they’ve had for a while. I think it took AK two or three days just to understand what we were saying (Laughs). We had good waves every single day! AK was totally on it, and used his considerable knowledge to make sure we were always in the right place at the right time. More often than not, we were the only boat at the break and had it all to ourselves! The average session count for the 13 day trip must have been in the 30′s , I’m sure the grommets had more than 40 sessions!!!! AK and the rest of the crew were extremely well organised, and nothing was too much trouble, making being on the boat a very relaxed & enjoyable experience. The boat (Mikumba) was superb. Comfortable and with lots of room, you could always find a bit of space for yourself if needed. It was also easily the most ‘kick-ass’ boat in the ocean.

So, a big thank you to everyone at Sumatran Surfariis for a really great trip. We’ll be back!”

Greeny • Northern England

“Howdy Scuzz,

Well it’s just over a month we got back from Heaven and just can’t wait for the next adventure in Paradise. To arrive to copious amounts of Bintang & Coronas at the Hotel that you really can bank at, get onboard the Southern Cross and the following morning wake up to glassy seas, breakfast and waves, no wonder they call it the playgrounds. To surf waves that are uncrowded, no hassles and warm water was exceptional to an overweight middle aged bloke that hadn’t done much surfing in the past 18 months.

To go away with guys who’s ages varied from 22 to 59 and then be met by yourself and a crew that provided not only a service that rivals any five star hotel,(no wonder you call it the Southern Cross ,it has five stars in it’s constellation) but a warm and homely presence upon a 78 ft boat was an absolute delight.

Till next year…Tear my car seat!”

Tony “Mr Happy” Quinlan • Australia

“Danny,

Thanks for putting everything together for our past trip this Apr/May. Trip of a lifetime! The BD had such a great crew, The surf was amazing and we managed to score so many spots alone. What else could someone ask for! They took care of it all from the second we landed in Padang. I have already made fun of my friends that decided not to come and told them to start saving! The 14 day trip is so worth it!

The only way it could be better is if we extended it longer. Definitely will be back.”

Brad Judge and Kyle Langworthy • USA

“Scuzz,

Just wanted to drop a line to give you a sincere thanks. I’ve been a pretty keen surfer for 15 years and I’ve always wanted to do the Mentawais with you. The trip was beyond what I expected in heaps of different ways. the waves, lads, crew, surfing standard of everyone, photos, bintangs, Padang. The first night was pretty surreal, listening to morning of the earth as we headed out. Couldn’t believe surfing HT’s first morning by ourselves. Really enjoyed roxies and bintangs but probably pushed myself the most at thunders. Stoked i also eventually paddled out at “triple ups” and paddled into three. Me and Azza starting to reflect on the trip now that we starting to get back into the swing of things back home. our wives reckon we have come back a bit different, better. have got my bow and arrow (from lances left) up on the wall with carvings and necklace next to my m.p cuttie painting in the lounge room. have made azza and me a huge poster with a few action shots, boat shot and team shot with our names, Mentawais, southern cross on it. definetly learnt a bit about my surfing too, must bend back leg, twist body around, and not to poo etc when barrel riding. having said that, got some sic pics. that josh made me look like i knew what i was doing.

Cheers again mate, you took us places that I feel privelged to see. defientely put a notch in our belts looking back on what we done. everyone back here has been quizing me on the trip and i have had nothing but amazing stories to tell and they’ve been frothin’ listening to it all and then my 1089 photos back it up. feel pretty rich whenever I drift back and think about it.

Tell Christine that I loved the hotel and that i felt the place was a really special part of the trip also. The hotel helped me feel right at home even though I had never experienced a place like Padang.

Good luck for the next few trips and thanks again for helping me live a dream. Hopefully be back one day.”

Dillon Milenkovic • Australia

“Signing on a mere two weeks before Mikumba was scheduled to depart, Danny Siudara (a.k.a. Slayer) walked me through the process and made me believe that this was going to happen. I have seen the images in surf mags of the Indo barrels for decades after leaving my “life as a surfer” in 1986 to make a move from Del Mar to Northern California. Surfing for me was now a once or twice a year event in So Cal during the holidays. Questioning Danny if this was right for a “48 year old knee-boarder in semi-retirement” he assured me that I could still pull-in with the best of them.

Fast forward to the end of 2 days of air travel and we arrive at the airport in Padang at sunset. Adam and his crew were there to meet us and the adventure was on. With our boards and gear loaded up, we were off to the Hotel Batang Arau. Through the darkness we endured a flat tire and finally made it to the Hotel where we were greeted by Scuzz and Christina, the gracious hosts. Christina made sure we were comfortable and ready for the journey that was ahead of us. After a quick bite and finishing up with the details, we left the Hotel for the drive to Mikumba. Once aboard Mikumba, we met the crew and settled our belongings into our cabin as we slipped anchor and motored into the black void of night – destination unknown. As a last minute member of the Cali posse, I was happy to be on this adventure with my brother-in-law Dan and his surfing bro’s Chris Dartland, Chris Murphy and Dax Billings. We got acquainted during the flights to Padang after first meeting at LAX, solidified by a 3 plus hour adventure at the wine bar in Singapore at 1:30 in the morning during a layover. Also aboard were two amazing surf dogs- Pete, currently teaching English in Japan and originally from Nova Scotia (surf nut) and an amazing athlete, and Joe, an immediately returning guest who was on the previous Mikumba trip and wanted more (having already endured some 100 plus reef reminders, cuts and gashes). I knew this was going to be good.

The Bintangs went down easily that night as we settled in for the adventure of a lifetime. We woke up the next morning to amazing waves, just as AK promised. The names of the many breaks we surfed mattered little to me. The reality that I was in Indo, and not only witnessing “perfect” waves but having the opportunity to surf them, was overwhelming. AK wanted to test our abilities, and when he called me into my second wave of the day, the joy of it all made me feel so fortunate to have the opportunity to be in the Mentawais. Having caught more waves that first session than I did all of the previous year, and they were killer waves, brought back more than just a stoke. Be it a Left or a Right, it didn’t matter to me because they were always scary fun. Over the next several days, I would briefly just sit on my trusty old Fish on the shoulder and be in awe of the beauty of place and time. Just being with a group of “surfers’, that surf lifestyle exemplified returned me to my younger days. One day in the tinny, I told AK that just being here, watching a perfect barrel- a combination of the right tide, wind and swell direction, this deep water focused energy meeting a reef was all I needed at that moment. I needed an adventure and I was certainly getting more than I had expected. Day after day- amazing waves, tolerable or minimal crowds in paradise, amazing snorkeling, nearly ideal weather, consistent fishing and great friendships. What more could you ask for?

Since I didn’t surf ever session, it took the formidable crew a while to understand who I was and why I was there if I wasn’t “surf crazy” like the rest of the boys. For me, surfing the unbelievable waves was a bonus. I was there to be with my Bro’ Dan, and to be on a boat, Mikumba. I am at my best aboard a racing sailboat, but this “pirate ship” was going to be just fine! The craftsmanship was of a time honored tradition, built in the Sulawesian style. The crew could see the serenity that Mikumba gave me: Warm Tropical waters with unbelievable clarity, sunrises and sunsets that just kept on giving, rain or star filled night skies and an appreciation of the little things that make the big picture more valuable. Some of my best memories were the times I had the crew to myself, while all of the rest of the boys were in the water.

These men of the Sea were amazing- Eddie kept the lights on, the beer cold and the engine and A/C purring; Sargent kept us in shape by dropping us close to the break from the “tinny”, but far enough that we still had a paddle to the line-up or back to the tinny which gave him such pleasure. He cleaned up behind us and made us feel at home; Tulong is such an amazing cook- always with a smile, he fed us three or four beautiful meals a day of the freshest food, spiced up just right. On the last night during the transit back to Padang, he served up the Wahoo I had caught earlier in the day three ways- sashimi, deep-fried and satay style, an absolutely killer send off. Why the hell are we going home again??? Ovi was a key crew member- always one step ahead of us, skills beyond belief and a great person to be around. I will always think of him driving the tinny, backing up in the corner so I could takes some amazing photos of the boys; Captain always carried a smile too- he would get us from point A to point B in style, with Mikumba swaying and rocking to the beat of an iPod jacked into the stereo system. On the final transit, he asked me if I wanted to drive, and I jumped at the opportunity to point Mikumba in the right direction. For us, the right direction included the spectacle of several pods of whales, swimming so calmly that AK, Dan and Joe dove in for a swim with these magnificent creatures. To say that the passage was surreal would be an understatement, for sure.

Then there was AK, Adam Kobayashi- his experience far beyond his years on this planet. He asked for our trust and he rewarded us daily with waves that memories are created from. He was always “straight-up” with us, even though’ sometimes this was confusing. I spent many hours with AK and the crew in the wheelhouse, after deck, salon or in the tinny. I can’t imagine the trip without AK as our guide, and I hope he will be the guide when we return. I’m sure of it- he gave us an amazing trip of a lifetime, until we do it again. AK, you better start planning now…

Returning to the real world was a non-cultural shock that I never expected. The transition from peace and serenity to reality is just not fair, in fact it fucking sucks. I want to thank everyone who had a part in this EPIC voyage, a trip of discovery, peace, serenity and life. The scenery, people and the children of Indonesia will always have a place in my heart, alongside the crew of Mikumba. Scuzz and Christina have fostered an incredible organization, and with Danny on this side of the equator making it smooth as glass, I can’t wait to go again. Maybe next time the Cockroaches will stay ashore!

Jeffrey Gould • Northern California

“Scuzz,

I can’t thank you enough for the incredible two weeks we had. I feel priviledged to have been able to enjoy such a beautiful place without the masses you typically associate with perhaps the most popular surf destination in the world. It was exactly the experience I think we were all looking for. What makes it even better is that no matter where we went or who we talked to- whether it was fellow skippers, Mentawai people, Tom Carroll for God’s sake- there is a universal respect and appreciation for you. Not to get all mushy on ya but in my book, you have to give respect to get respect and it is obvious that you have earned every bit of it by doing things the right way. Realizing that you have a business to run and people who depend on you for their livelihood, I am sure it has not been easy for you- where others may have cut corners or taken advantage to earn a few extra bucks you have probably had some tough decisions to make.

Some people told me we were foolish to do a trip in late November but in the back of my mind I kept thinking- who am I going to listen to, them or Scuzz? There is no such thing as a 100% guarantee in life anyway- not knowing what you are going to get is half the fun. Sorry if I am rambling on here, I just wanted to thank you for sharing a really magical place with us. Here’s to future success for you and Chris and everyone associated with your operation.

Until the next trip.”

Grant Sharp • California

“G’day,

I jut wanted to drop a line thanking you guys for the great stuff you guys do out there , I had my first (but not last!) trip with you guys a while back with AK and mano, being the grom , (15) usually makes life a bit difficult in the surfing world I live in, but you guys made the best outta the trip and we all had a blast. Superb waves!

I’m looking forward to my next trip coming up soon with the mikumba, mid year.”

Gordon Brown • Western Australia

“Despite the fact that I wasn’t sure if I would even make my first part of the trip due to some chaotic flight situations on the first leg of 50 hours worth of flying, I think I can our trip was probably one of the best trips I have ever been on. Our group was awesome and everyone had a great time together. Ask AK or Dr. Evil about the “Band” and a whole slew of stories will surely follow. We consumed more beer than I knew possible but were still on it early and all day. Some great tubes at **** even though that place took more flesh in a single day from me than any of my previous two trips to Indo and other locales such as Samoa combined.

We caught some ***** waves way up north pretty darn good and had it solo for two days only to laugh at seven boats that pulled up as we were pulling anchor and headin back south. Damn good barrels and walls up there. Hell session at Asu broke my board after the second wave but a quick replacement put me back out there and we had it damn good all day. Overall one hell of a trip with the best crew and captain I have ever had. Even though I started full time work a few days after getting back to the states and probably won’t be able to take a trip like that again for years to come, I think the amazing memories might be able to last a little while. I just wanted to thank you guys for making it so enjoyable.”

Brian Atlee • USA

“Hi Danny,

As a first time participant in an organised surf trip this was a new experience for me and I think that the whole Mikumba crew and Padang support team deserve a huge pat on the back. I could not have asked for a more conscientious and easy-going guide than “AK” and when he said on the first night that we’d only have to do 2 things (unpack on day 1 and then pack on day 14) he was right. We surfed a mix of lefts and rights and I’m really grateful that AK, Mono and the crew were able to get us to a location each dawn that had swell and offshore winds.

Every session in the surf was memorable for one reason or another and it was a real treat surfing with a new bunch of guys that all got on really well. Calling each other into waves quickly became the standard and will be one of things that stays with me for a long time, I could go a whole week surfing at home and there’s not much chat in the water.

The food was fantastic and I think also that getting access to a couple of the kampongs/villages that we anchored near was a treat.

Thanks again Danny, I’m already thinking about next year!”

Dave Presley • Victoria, Australia

“Well Mikumba Boys it’s been a month now since returning home and I feel I owe you all a few comments about our trip in June. I choose the word “owe” because what you did for all our crew goes much further than us just being a customer. You treated us like family. This was my first trip north and the experience brought me (us) back to our roots. Although we cannot do it as frequently as we like, we all live for this! And live we did. We also hope Aki is doing well.

On just our second day some of the boys delivered an exiting session at one of AK’s favorite spots. It was nice to see even Scuzz was entertained by the evening photos. I’m just glad that AK had faith in us after making sure we could surf. I swear I am going to send him a copy of Poisons, “Every Rose has it’s Thorns.” The second day was pretty fricken magical and already made up for the long travel it takes to get to my favorite place in the world. The highlight of this day for me was sharing a spot with Soldier (just him and I) for a couple hours on his home turf. Can’t wait till next time Soldier…..

We moved further north, bought some goods, and Treve even sent a local back to his casa without his paddle. But it’s ok – he came back with more. ;)

Next three days were going offfffffff… Nothing like pulling up at the premier spot just as the swell hits. After surfing our brains out for three days and as the swell died we headed to some exposure and of course a storm hits. AK thought we may want to head back. Nothing like a little adventure with an experienced crew!

Finished off with a good left for the goofys. I’ll never forget that morning when AK said, “Come on Keller, go be the Ginny.” Day turned out pretty darn good. Catching a Mahi on the way back and looking at the Southern Cross in the sky that night was like a fine Cognac after the perfect meal.

I can’t say thank you enough to the whole crew but I’ll say it again, thank you. That includes Mano and Tomo, as well as the crew at the hotel. AK, well done, Shaka. And we cannot forget the man who puts it all together, Danny. Always following through and keeps the group in check. Killer food, always a clean boat, and we managed not to run out of beer. Do we still hold the record? Please give a peace sign to my Buddy Yu as I consider him a good friend. If any of you come to Cali you’ve got a place to stay.

Looks like the swells been pumping. Know your scoring, stay safe.”

Mike Keller • Central California

“Hey Danny!

How’s it going? I wanted to tell you about my trip aboard the BD (Budyadahri) and you can post it on the site!

The best trip I have ever had!!! I just got back a couple days ago from a 2 week trip aboard the BD and this boat has the best layout out there with tons of space to hang out and relax! I would not want to be in any other boat!!! The sleeping beds are comfortable, the TV/DVD area is great, the bathrooms are strategically placed on the side of the boat and the toilets and showers work well. The upper deck is golden and it was where we mostly hang out during the day and night with the stereo always cranking some great tunes! The food was great and the ice cream too!  Let me say that you have the best friken crew out there!!! The guys go way beyond their duties and are always there to whatever you need! From the cook to the captain and not to mention the engineer who can fix boards better anybody I have ever seen! Yu and Bevo often in the speed boat taking some great shots of the guests! All of them amazing people which I became good friends with. I had a fantastic time out there and did not want to come home! We scored amazing waves with hardly anybody around! Telescopes, Lance’s, HT’s, Macca’s, Thunders, Rags and even Green Bush! WOW!!!!! Incredible place, awesome boat, unbelievable waves, great people and the best time of my life!!!

Terima Kasih.”

Marcelo Tancredi • Florida

“Danny,

That trip ruled. No place on earth quite like that. It was my first trip and definitely not the last. I’d have to say too, the crew was constantly on it at every decision. All was always handled, and things were smooth as could be, despite mother nature. Seas a little rough? No worries. Cappies on it. Need to switch a board? Jai’s on it passing it down to Soldier in the zodiac, and simultaneously tuning the motor. Need lunch? Tulong is in there making the spiciest thing you’ve ever eaten, and laughing his head off the rest of the day when you eat it. Cut your hand off? There’s Mano to sew it back on. Then there’s AK callin it day in and day out. Once he showed me the skatepark, they could’ve left me there and picked me up on the way back. But push on and be rewarded. And that we did. Cappy manhandled 10 ft seas for hours on end. Ovi and Jul rocked tunes while the sun went down, lighting up the sky. The barrell opened up and Tomo was there to get the shot. Catching fish. Eating sushi! Rooftop chill sessions with Mano owning the drum and talking of Brasil. Things were surreal there. Like a lifetime packed into 2 weeks. The water’s cold here. Back to autopilot. Work. Save. Go to Indo.

I look forward to my return and thank you for escape of a lifetime.”

Danny Sullivan • California

“Hey Danny (Slayer),

I wanted to report back that our Sumatra trip with F’IN sick! We all had the best time and the surf was most excellent, so thanks so much for your assistance. The whole experience was so professional from soup to nuts, and I can’t wait to return in 2008. I loved the Mikumba and already miss waking to a dropping anchor.

The crew was ideal, notably:

AK – So chill and so professional, bummed he couldn’t surf with us. Totally kept us in the loop and made great decisions. Top shelf guy!

Mono – Classic dude, really came in handy with all our injuries, especially some cheek/nose stitching. Having a surgeon on board really helped ease my fears, too. And he ripped, too.

Tomo – Jedi Master, sick photog. Tomo rules.

Tulong – Insane meals every time. Best omelets ever, and great presence.

Keiko – Best bonus of the trip. Wonderful attitude, killer massages, great addition to the whole experience. Budding Ukulele professional.

Please pass along my thoughts to Scuzz, and thanks again for all YOUR great work too. Best 2 weeks ever.”

Carter Townsend • California

“How do I begin a thank you email!

Fucking awesome comes to mind straight away!

(Scuzz) A big thanks to you to begin with, as you started the whole Sumatran Surfariis. Your insight to begin with, has lead many an expedition to find beautiful, majestic and sensational waves. To then use that information and begin a pure surf trip company designed for surfers to experience awesome waves with life on a boat added on, is a massive credit to you. Along with the use of many a local it has cemented in my mind, a perfect Indo surf holiday.

To your lady, the Lovely Christina, a bright bubbly crazy character that emits a welcoming radiance when greeted at Hotel Batang Arau. With a story always to tell, the company strengthens.

What else can I say! But you ain’t seen the last of myself, nor Steve and Simon. We will tell all that wants a surf trip to forget the rest, Sumatran Surfariis is the best! (sorry shit cliche but poignant)

I am putting together many a DVD worth of photos for all on the charter, will also send you a copy with also a portfolio of photos of the boat and unrelated surf spot locations for you to use at your discretion.

When can we book our next trip?”

Josh Symon • Australia

“Danny,

I have returned home yesterday from an adventure of a lifetime. High expectations are generally not meet but in this case the trip exceeded what I thought a boat trip would entail. Scuzz was absolutely an amazing guide who was professional in every way with a warm personality and infectious spirit. His knowledge of the area and ocean had us all surfing the best breaks the day had to offer. All the crew were incredibly hard working and at times I felt like some sort of Royalty.

Great memories are now etched with amazing photo’s to relive the awesome experience.”

Matt Davis • Victoria

“Hi you guys,

Your probably out on the water and won’t get this email for a while, but I wanted to send a huge thanks to you and your crew.

Phil was just out with Yu and the gang on Southern Cross and had an incredible time. Nothing like getting a husband back after 2 weeks of fun surf, with good times with good people and tons of good memories. He will probably write you at some point, but I wanted to personally say thanks. I have worked in travel most of my life and know what a quick note can do. You guys are great.

Cheers to good surf, happiness and health.

Aloha!

P.S. If you ever need someone to stand in for a couple weeks as surf gide w/ his massage therapist wife…let us know.”

Lora Casey • Hawaii

“Hello Scuzz,

As far as I’m concerned you have set a new standard in surf trips that is going to be almost impossible to beat. All I can do is keep coming back.

Thanks to Scuzz, with your amazing knowledge of the area, for getting us into such a variety of quality, uncrowded breaks. You are a legend. Thanks Aki for your photography. It was definitely a bonus, checking out the days pics every evening with mates and plenty o’ Bintang. Thank you, Captain, Boody, Eddie, Joe and Erie for looking after us so well.

I was just hoping for great waves and you guys made it so much more.”

Trevor Darby • Victoria

“Hey Scuzz,

Thank you, Aki, Captain, Boody, Eddie, Joe and Erie for an awesome trip. Super fun uncrowded waves, we felt so looked after by your crew it was a real break from what I what I normally do managing a recycling and waste management business. And the fish and the food was mindblowing – not what I expected to be munching on a boat in the middle of the Mentawais.

And thanks for giving us the “Monkey” experience. He was an hilarious character who brought an eternally youthful attitude to the water. I’ll definately be spreading the word on your charters to my brothers, cousins and mates.”

Christian Buxton • Australia

“Sumatran Surfariis Family,

I wanted to thank everyone at SS for making every trip magical! It has been 4 trips on 4 boats and every trip has been unreal. I look forward to coming back as often as possible. Scuzz, Slayer, Christina, Aki, AK, Yu, Shello and the entire crew have allways been super professional, and friendly. It shows how much they care that their guests have the best surf trip of their lives. Finding the best most uncrowded waves is their goal, and what else could anyone ask for when they go on a trip?

See you all soon.”

Rick “The Bear” Whittington • Sebastopol, CA

“Dear Sheldo and the Budyadahri Crew,:

Our trip was between 17 August – 1 September 2006 on board the Budyadahri, under the expert guidance of Shello, and the crew: Captain Baron, Chef Tulang, Engineer Bujang and Deck Hands Hen and Zul.

The guests were quite an eclectic mix of older surfers, including desk bound London lawyers and Auckland professionals as well as a 50 year old South African charger. The rest harked from New Zealand, North Carolina and Japan. It was quite a challenge catering for mixed abilities and fitness, but the Budyadahri seemed to be able to optimize the best waves in the conditions. The introductory sessions at Playgrounds and Bang Bang were the perfect warm up for what lay ahead at Thunders. We surfed everyday, whether it be the playful Bang Bang or the heaving Thunders. Most of the time we were well ahead of the pack – testimony to Sheldo’s experience and the ocean knowledge of Captain Baron, who would drop anchor each morning at another uncrowded gem. Our voyage took us to most of the big spots E-bay, Lance’s Left, Macaronis, Japan Island, Thunders, Rag’s Left and on the final day a heaving HTs.

The accommodation on board was superb – always another cold Bintang on hand, delicious food available and excellent surf viewing from the top deck. We ate like kings with crabs, tuna and trevally in abundance. The highlight of the food gathering was the capture of the king of the sea – a 45k trevally.

There were some hell barrels with Bazza in particular scoring a gem at Thunders – but there were many more….

There is nothing quite like bonding with a group of new and old friends with one thing on their mind (no-not the professor’s cornucopia, massive fish or even the beautiful scenery) – paddling in to more big clean waves! This was a once in a lifetime experience. Thanks to all of you for making it a reality for us.

Keep paddling…”

Adam Culy • United Kingdom

“Scuzz and Crew,

It’s been a month or two since we got back and I think I can safely say that there has not been a day that’s gone by that I did not think about the Southern Cross, Indo, and the great waves we scored. It’s real hard to enjoy 2 foot beachbreak when the bar has been raised so high.

From booking the trip to getting dropped off at the airport to fly home, everything was great and well organized. The crew, food, boat, surf, etc… good times were had by all. Thanks again and hopefully you will be getting an email soon from our crew locking down another trip!

Terima kasih!”

Drew Weddle • California

“Well unfortunately I’m set back in surfless London ( not for too long hopefully…), and wanted to take the chance to say thanks for a fantastic trip through the Mentawai’s this season. After travelling the world surfing the past few years I would have to say it’ll be pretty hard to top the mission we had on board the Budyadari. The boat was primo, heaps of space to chill out and sink the odd tinny on the sundeck after a big day in the water. I think that blew me away the most was the quality of waves, after 2 weeks of cranking swell and constantly being ahead of the pack surfing uncrowded barrells, it was a testament to your experience in the area. I have some other crew that are keen to head down next August and it would be great if yourself and Budyadari were free for another sojourn.

Say G’day to Han, Eddie, and the rest of the crew, and don’t forget to let me know your movements next August.”

Mike Doig • London

“Hey Scuzz and Danny!

Now it’s already 1 month ago when I left from Padang back here to Brussels. I want to thank you for making this trip possible for me, specially with such a short notice. When we all finally came aboard Mikumba it was like being right there, just as I always had imagined it, and next morning when dropping anchor at this beautiful right hander I felt really really happy. So happy just to be at such a place.

This trip will still give me these good memories for the coming weeks, month…, years. What I just want to say is, IT WAS A F*CKING AMAZING TRIP. The crew and also the other surfers were really nice and mellow. Just perfect! Shit, I want an other one, RIGHT NOW! Guess I need to wait some more time to make it happen again.

Until then I say goodbye and send you my very best regards.”

Tomas Lutz • Brussels

“Scuzz,

Sorry, been a while but got around to it eventually. I just wanted to say a huge thanks again to you, Chirstina and the rest of the crew at Sumatran Surfaris for such an amazing trip, best surfing trip I have ever been on by far.

Well, its been a while since me and the rest of our Welsh/Aussie crew returned from our 2006 trip but I still dream about it pretty much every day.

I was amazed at the distances and the variety of the breaks in the Mentawais, but we still managed to surf for an average of 6 hours a day for 15 days with multiple sessions at at least 12 different spots. From rights that seemed like Kirra, to epic epic places like Maccaronis, we did it all. We also managed to do it while avoiding most other boats and hooking in some chunky fish along the way. This is all thanks to our expert guide, Yu, who was just awesome. He not only knew the Mentawais area better than most people know their local surfing area, he was consistently playing the game smart, checking other charters itinerary, listening on the radio, to avoid others and pick the best waves. He was also totally stoked on sharing the waves with us and seeing us get some dream green rooms wherever he could direct the Budyadahri. He also taught us a bit about how to ride some thick mutants at Bank Vaults. It is a credit to you guys to train the guides to that level, and after the trip, it has become obvious to me that a really good guide is more far more valuable than a slightly faster boat in order to score good uncrowded surf.

The rest of the crew were superb too, all friendly and happy, and worked really hard to make sure that we got around the islands safely on full stomachs and with a cold Bintang in one hand wherever possible. One of the fellas was an expert ding repairer, which was pretty lucky as there were some serious holes of fibre glass to replace on some of the boys boards even by the end of the first day. They made it a real holiday, and sorted out pretty much everything from racking the boards up to hanging up wet clothes hanging around etc.. They also knew about how to pull in the big fish. They were pretty excited about some lures we bought onboard, which were so nasty looking that I am surprised we got them through customs. Unfortunately, they lured big fish that our lines just couldn’t cope with; we lost them both to a 2 metre sailfish that snapped the lines like dental floss; what a sight though seeing a fish like that go absolutely mental jumping around until it got loose!!

So, sincere thanks again and definitely will be seeing you again for a future trip. Until then, I will be carry on dreaming. I have attached a photo of the waves that I dream about the most at Maccas. Cant wait to get back there!”

Ed Phillips • Wales

“Danny & Scuzz,

Sorry I haven’t got back to you sooner. Obviously, I’ve been back from Indo for some time, but one thing leads to another and somehow I’ve procrastinated on dropping you a line.

We had a blast on the tour. We got very solid surf in the Telos, not tubing, but long workable lefthanders with fun sections. A surprise secret right in the Telos provided one of the funnest waves I’ve ever seen when it turned on for a couple of hours one evening. Sort of bad weather and smaller waves in the middle of the trip, but still surfable every day and we got some good fishing and diving. The end of the trip was the bomb…we were in the Banyaks waiting and we got the last three days of the trip overhead with perfect winds all day. Just insane. I can’t tell you how glad I am that I was able to stay for the end of the trip! If I didn’t straighten out my last minute work crisis, I would have missed what turned out to be pretty much the best waves of my life.

The crew was great. They really worked their asses off to keep the boat clean and organized and keep us all stoked. Aki Nori kept us on the right spots at the right time, and kept us laughing every night. I can’t tell you how much Saka’s cooking made for a great trip. That guy really does a lot with the simple ingredients and cooking facilities he had to work with. Every night we were amazed by the variety and quality of the grinds he was throwing down. The other guys were quiet, friendly, and soulful and always working hard to keep things sweet for us.

You’ve really got some good people working with you and for you. Again, kudos to the crew for staying on top of things and minimizing the impact of the issues.

Thank you both for your generous offer to work with my potentially f’d up schedule…it really all worked out well. Please pass my thanks on to Christina as well, I don’t seem to have her email handy.”

Chris Murphy • California

“Danny,

On behalf of our group, a HUGE MAHALO to you and your crew for everything. For many of us, this was our first surf trip we’ve taken, and it was absolutely incredible! The crew (Edi, Bujon, Baron, Sul, and Hen) were awesome! Everything we could’ve wanted, they had, and they busted their butts to insure that everything down to the smallest detail was taken care of. We could not have asked for a better crew. They kept everything clean and immaculate. They were there to take us in the speedboat wherever and whenever we wanted, and I cannot put into words how great these 5 guys were. Just to give you an example, one of our guys brought a pair of binoculars and they got all fogged up with salt water, you could not see a thing when you looked through them. The next morning, we woke up and looked at the surf, I picked them up and they were fixed; totally clear of all fog! When we asked who fixed them, none of the crew wanted to take credit for it initially. We finally figured out who it was. This crewmember took it upon himself to take the binoculars apart, wipe down the lenses from the inside and reassemble them. He fixed it without us asking him to and then wouldn’t take credit for an amazing job. The crew was so humble and so graciously accomodating, it was amazing and refreshing to meet such wonderful and kind people!

Yu (surf guide) was absolutely, ridiculously on top of everything. He found us places to surf no matter what the swells, winds, and conditions were like. He went above and beyond the call of duty by preparing a professional quality DVD for all of us. He always made sure everyone got waves, he was absolutely fantastic! A lifelong friend to all of us, I’m sure.

Everything went perfectly from being picked up from the airport, to getting places, everything went off without a hitch! Traveling that far from Hawaii was a little scary, but the scheduling, trip planning that you all did made everything go so much smoother than we could’ve ever hoped for! Thank you so much Danny. This trip was absolutely fantastic and we will undoubtedly tell everyone we know over here in Hawaii that if they are planning to go on a surf trip, that the Mentawai Islands is where it’s at, and that you and your company, Sumatran Surfariis is unquestionably the BEST surf charter company around!

Thank you from all of us here over in Hawaii.”

Chad Sakumoto • Honolulu

“Danny,

Well…in a nutshell, you were right! The trip was EPIC and there were no worries at all. NO BIRD FLU, NO EARTHQUAKES, NO TSUNAMIS… The waves, crew, and guides (Yu and Shello) were awesome. I am sure I dont need to go into detail…you must get a bunch of thank you letters in regards to these trips. I just wanted to drop you a quick email and say thanks… I had a blast and I hope to do another “trip of lifetime” in the future.”

Jim Lee • Southern California

“Aloita is the perfect place to take your partner away on holidays, but you still get to surf! Now you can go surfing and they can get pampered in the day spa and it won’t break the budget. The resort is set in picture perfect white sand beaches under coconut palms and surrounded by aqua blue water. Its an affordable surf / dive holiday with the privacy and the creature comforts but without all the hassles. The bungalows all have there own private beach access to calm, safe swimming and snorkeling beach while A-grade surf breaks are only minutes away on the speed boat with the expert guides. The resort is a long awaited alternate option to surf and dive the Mentawaii islands in style.”

Scott Godfredson • Australia

“Danny,

honestly… it was the best surf trip I think any of us have ever been on! For two weeks, we scored incredible surf… lived aboard a kick ass boat… had perfect conditions… surfed our brains out… and had an AWESOME guide with a FANTASTIC crew!!! I couldn’t have asked for anything more… everyone was stoked, like truly STOKED on the whole trip (which made it extremely hard to come home).

THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU for all the planning and hard work… and for answering all the questions which came your way. I’m completely convinced that Sumatran Surfariis is the best surf travel organization out there. You guys have it dialed in… from the booking process, to the killer hotel in Padang (with great food and a cute staff :) to the insane trip you sent us on. Being back at work SUCKS… your operations have totally jaded me for life! ;)

Adam took extremely good care of everyone, putting us in the right spot at the right time. the WHOLE TRIP! We even had a chance to venture pretty far north which was an extra special treat for many of us… you hear the stories, but you never know till you’re right there in the pocket! I have to say, both Adam and Yu are SOLID guides who fit in with our group very well… provided endless entertainment and showed us a thing or two about surfing world class barrels over sharp ass reef breaks. Our food was insane and the sashimi/poki that Saka whipped up was definitely a hit…

Sharing this trip with my best friends, my new friends from the boat, and especially with my brother, was all-time! Memories were made that will stay with me the rest of my life… and I’m pretty sure the rest of us from SWATT ’06 feel this same way.

I only wish I could still be back on Mikumba!”

Andris Hodosy • Southern California

“Hey Danny,

Hope your doing well. We were pretty lucky with the swell again…anywhere between head to double overhead the whole time! Me and AK got a special session at our favorite secret spot!!! Trading off barrels on every wave, by ourselves, with only a rainbow as company…priceless.

Got to check out the waves further North this time and was blown away…the place is absolutely amazing. AK is such a committed, full force individual and is always in the right place at the right time. The other guests were blown away by how “on it” he is…I already knew it! I got to meet Yu for the first time and really liked him a lot. He’s such a humble, sincere, and thoughtful person…not to mention the fact that he’s cool as hell and an amazing waterman. Needless to say, Sumatran Surfaris is what surfing is all about and I’m honored to be associated with you guys.

In the immortal words of Monkey, “I’ve scarred my brain for life by getting shacked up from the mozzies all the way to the breadfruit tree!” “Not a drop of water out of place…Aishh.”

Rob Bent • Ventura County, CA

“Hello Christina, Scuzz, and Danny,

I wanted to say thanks to you and the entire crew for an awesome trip! you had to deal with a lot of superfluous issues (bullsh..) with our trip and handled them magnificantly. your patience, diligence, and positive attitudes deserve special praise. before even stepping on the boat, I would have recommended Sumatran Surfariis to anyone in a heartbeat! and… now that i am back at home suffering from post-indo depression, surfing in 11 degree celsius water, and thinking about the trip… i have nothing but applause for your company.

everything was seamless… we arrived in medan and tom took care of us… ak was there to get us on the boat in sibolga… the crew was second to none and ak was awesome… two weeks of surfing, eating, and chillin on the mikumba were special… debbie greeted us in sibolga and brought us to the airport… we were met in medan, stayed at a very nice hotel, and taken to the airport the next morning for our flight home… all we had to do was show up and everything else was like clockwork, which would not have been the case if we had attempted traveling on our own. unfortunately, during all of this, the indian ocean didn’t cooperate with everyone’s expectations. that being said, ****** was epic, ****** was perfect, ****** was wild, ****** was phat, and the islands off northern sumatra have so much love to offer!

i have been on many fishing charter boats and know how much effort goes not only into keeping them afloat but also in catering to their clientele. the mikumba’s second surf voyage with Sumatran Surfariis can attest to this… we had epic surf, no surf, empty lineups, barrels galore, amazing sunrises and sunsets, tropical fruit, fresh fish daily, lobster, storms, fried food, dinged/broken surfboards… and we made it home safely! the crew is first-class in every aspect, it’s no wonder i enjoyed hanging out with them so much. ak was a great guide who found us waves when it seemed there was no swell out there. basically, I was stoked to be a part of their family for two weeks… yeah bongs!

I have no doubt that the mikumba, and Sumatran Surfariis, will only get better with each trip under your guidance and dedication… and it is already exceptional. i look forward to meeting the padang folks and would appreciate it if you could tell the mikumba boys “happa kabar bongs” for me. until next time…”

Dwight Barnes • San Francisco, CA

“Scuzz,

I just got back from a 13 day trip on the Mikumba with AK and company (Rhodes group). Although I know that Ian is compiling a comprehensive list of thoughts on the trip I wanted to send my own.

The trip was excellent. AK is a great guide, very positive and very committed to making the experience a good a possible for everyone involved. Great knowledge of the spots and his willingness to travel, especially during flat spells really made us feel like if there were waves to be found that AK would find them.

The Indo crew was great as well. Our appreciation was reflected in our tip. They were hard working but mostly just plain good guys.

The waves could have been much more consistent but that goes with the territory.”

Mark Hildebrand • San Francisco Bay

“Danny,

Great trip. I don’t know if I can put down the right words but knowing this was MIKUMBA’S first trip out of Sibolga, I have to say it went very well. Every step of the way through out the travel we were met immediately by someone who ushered us quickly and efficiently through the red tape of foreign travel. Once we got to where the boat was moored we met AK. The boat wasn’t quite ready for us to board so we were made comfortable at the hotel in Sibolga for a short time till we boarded. The boat was clean. big and spacious. The crew was absolutely on it! They kept the boat clean and organized all the time and the food was excellent.

We traveled north and worked our way up. Not much swell but still sampled some fun waves every day for the first few days. This was alright ‘cause we were all still adjusting to our new surroundings and environment. A few days in we had some minor crew drama, which was quickly and smoothly worked out. With this behind us things started to open up and flow nicely we shared Asu with two other boats for a couple of days while a decent swell pulse went through. We easily shared sessions with the other boat crews and had a couple of magical hours of surf each day. My 40th birthday and the dice game blah blah blah. Ouch! Kept going north and surfing every day. Eventually bumped into a couple other boats but were able to stay out of each other’s way. I think out of the two or three other boats we ran into we scored the best and most consistent surf. Of course not knowing the area we always wondered what it was doing somewhere else but the boys kept us on it. We looked at other spots when we couldn’t stand the pressure anymore and always felt like we hadn’t missed the call for that day. We scored little swell pulses regularly and had a great time. STOKED!”

J.J. Gerritsen • California

“Scuzz and Christina,

I’m back in France! Once more, I had a great trip, thank you!!!

First, I must say that I was amazed the way you organized the trips between Medan and Sibolga! I did it by myself a couple of times, and it was hard to believe that it can be so smooth! At every stop, we had someone to help us, and for the return trip, even though you have to cope with the cancellation of Merpati flight, everything went fine and we got in time in Medan!

Mikumba is now perfect for boat trip! Having separate cabins is a huge bonus… The boat is so huge that is easy to find a spot for yourself if you want to. Of course, the first days have been quite hard for Adam and the crew, to make everything perfect… But after this, everything went fine, good organization on the boat. For a first trip, the crew did really well. And the cook Saka is a real “Chef”! The boat is ready for a great season.

Concerning the surf, despite the lack of swell, we did really good!!! 10 days out of 13, at least one guy on the boat got a barrel! We scored ****, a perfect Asu during 2 days, and all the spots on **********! I’m not sure the Californian surfers (very cool guys) really realized how good Adam did with this swell condition.

For me, the last day was kind of special! The Californian guys did not want to surf ******** (most of them were goofy, it was pretty inconsistent, they preferred to surf ******), Adam dropped me on Southern Cross to spend the day. I got such a warm welcome from Aki and the Indo Crew (Capt. Maytek, Jo, Bhuddy, Harry). I was really touched! And I surfed ******, got 6-7 bombs peeling perfectly for 400 meters, first time for me since the earthquake. I’m so stoked this wave is still that gem!!!

Leaving from Sibolga was a real plus, since we could surf the ****** on the last day. The only drawback was that I didn’t spend anytime in Padang, to give a big hug to the surfer of the year and a big kiss (with your permission, Scuzz) to you, Christina.

Thank you so much… See you soon, the sooner the better!”

****(certain spot names withheld on this one to protect our northern secrets).

Thierry Jeantheau • France

“Well I’m back in sunny Queensland and yep there’s surf but it’s not a scratch on the experience I had with you guys.

I just wanna say a huge thanks to Christina, Chris, Danny and Yu!! I certainly got some of the best waves of my life and soooo many of them!!! Yu has some photos of the trip and Chris Farrand is making a video so that’ll be cool, and as soon as the pics start to filter through to me I’ll forward them to you guys…

The crew on the Budyadahri were so helpful and deserve a big rap, always there to help and make sure you’re comfortable and well fed for the whole trip, totally unbelievable!! Yu, such a cool cat, and I’m sure he’ll be staying with me over in Oz at some point, a great guide who gave us the best waves, whilst 5 boats were at one celebrity left we had one of the best rights in Indo to ourselves!!!!! 6 feet of arrrggghhhhh!!!

Last of all I think the good vibe that your guides and company promotes puts at ease your customers and invites an attitude that enabled everyone on the trip to get along…and I can honestly say that there was no tension on the boat, we all made great friends and no doubt will stay in touch and hang out again.

Fingers crossed I’ll be out again, and it’ll definitely be with you guys. Best of luck for the rest of the season

Goodtimes and Happiness.”

Gavin Edwards • Queensland, Australia

“Dear Christina & Scuzz,

Speaking on behalf of our group, you and your crew are beyond words!!!! Slayer was so accommodating, simplifying everything from our boat schedule (Thanks a million for the Budadahri, what a treat!!) to our flights, health insurance, what to bring lists, etc. He set it up where global travel felt easier than domestic!! Truly making the hard parts of the trip cruise!! Yu was over the top!!! He should get an award for ALWAYS being on it no matter what the condition!!!! We surfed nine spots in eleven days ranging from fun to ridiculously perfect!!!! He had the boat rolling before sunrise always ensuring we had good surf everyday!!! Yu is a true waterman. He went out a mile, dove 30+ feet, speared a fish, just to ensure we had fish that night. He put together a DVD of our trip that was of complete professional quality. By far the best video/DVD of our entire group’s personal library!!!

The crew took excellent care of us treating us like kings. They kept the boat clean and immaculate. Edi’s food was delicious (fish, chicken, vegetables, all fresh and very tasty). Zul and Hen never let us paddle. They watched us like hawks. The slightest movement toward the surf and they had your board and the dingy ready to take you (amazing how they knew each of our boards). With a wave of your board they were there to pick you up from the line up with a cold one!! Out of this world!!!! Bujong never stopped working illustrating he could build and fix anything (including Josh’ leg). A true hero!! And Boron gave us the utmost confidence in driving the boat safely while catering to our every surf whim (leaving on a moments notice). Your entire organization is the best of the best!! And imagine this you exist in the most perfect wave enriched environment in the world!!!

We have all unanimously concluded that Sumatran Surfariis has the best to offer in surf travel. The best waves, the best crew, the best attitude, the best understanding of both the Mentawai people and waves, and the best organization of travel!! Between us all we have been around the world several times and nothing has compared to the experience you provide!!!!

Looking forward to next year’s trip (by the way this year was even better than last!).”

David Hergenroeder • Central Coast, California

“Ciao a Danny & todos!

Trip was great even if last days we had small waves and lot of rain, but we found and surfed a new spot with the wind swell. We named it Desperados or Risky Left (Chad knows) and we had the chance to explore the islands.

Food was great and the boat too (lots of dvd for the stormy hours), maybe the tall guys had some problems with the small space in the sleeping area. The guide is a really cool guy and the experience on land was really impressive to me and to the rest of the group.

Hope to come back again next year guys. Take care boys, I miss the Broke Back Boat!”

Giuseppe Arioni • Italy

“Hi Danny,

I just wanted to thank you again for all of your help in getting the Indo trip set up. I had a stellar time and am already looking at dates to go again. I am thinking October, March next year and Sept./Oct. next year. You may think I am kidding, but I am definitely not.

Saranya was a great boat and as you said, the guys were a kick. Both the Italian contingent and the Danish guys were a real kick.”

Rob Phillips • California

“Hello Danny,

I’m really happy to say that all us who went agree that it was the best surf trip we’ve ever done! Aki did a great job finding the best waves, taking great photos, and generally getting along well and having a great time with all of us. We had good quality waves nearly every day – head high Burgurs – overhead Macca’s – several good days at Lances Left and HT’s ranging from 1 metre to well overhead. We can’t beleive our luck and we’re all keen to do it again.

We’re bound to be speaking again in the not too distant future.”

Pete Johnston • Australia

“Hi Scuzz & Slayer,

Well, its now just on a month since I have arrived back in Oz along with the other guys (Pete Smith, Choc Oke etc). Firstly, without carrying on too much, my trip away with the guys and especially you Scuzz and the crew was just so amazing that I can’t even start to explain to people how good it was. I’d be back right now if I could sell my property.

Anyway Scuzz, thankyou thankyou thankyou so much for the perfect trip with perfect waves, perfect people, perfect darn everything.

Thanks again.”

PJ • Byron Bay

“Hi Danny!

WOW, AWESOME, that is how the boys would describe the trip, as well as all the “papas”. We had a really great time and the crew on board were really good. We all will have many fond memories of them as I hope they will of us. When you are next in Padang and if you see them ask them about the broken anchor and the mode of repair!

One thing we thought was really good on the Budyadahri was the solid sun awning on the bow as this really cut down the UV’s. I don’t think any of us got burned at all though we were pretty careful. We had great waves the whole trip and the boys went really well. Not so me as I hurt my ribs on about the 4th day and found it hard to paddle after that.

We will be back soon. Thank you again for all your help and friendship.”

Peter Kennett • Australia

“Slayer,

Thanks so much for a cool trip mate, it was great to meet you and to get such sick waves for the whole trip. I bet your lady was stoked to have you home and hope that the flight wasn’t too shite! Well I’m off to Pakistan tomorrow night so will be quiet on the e-mail for a while but will definitely drop you an e-mail when I get a gap bru and will check your site for any updates… of the Predator, Husky/Barrel Boy and Sean-gelina joli/Capt. cling-on!

Thanks again for putting an epic trip together with such a cool crew and I will definitely only book with you and your crew in the future!

Keep smiling and surf hard BRU.”

Sean Barnard • South Africa

“Thank you very much! To you and all the crew!

I thank that was the best surf trip I’ve ever had in 30 years of riding. The crew, guests, food, fishing and boat were all stupendous and beyond what I had imagined. I look forward to returning soon for another penultimate adventure.”

Brad Bowman • Ventura County, CA

“Hey guys,

I just wanted to send along a quick hello and thanks for everything. My time in Indo was pure magic. I know that everyone was taking a huge gamble agreeing to have a girl on board and I hope I did not disappoint. A.K. and the whole crew made me feel most welcome and the boys from OZ were incredible. I feel so lucky that I got to spend an amazing 14 days with some of the friendliest, funniest people I have ever met.

I totally lucked out all around. I think that they would all agree that I proved I could be one of the boys. Well, except for maybe the dice game. I lost royally but I was still a good sport and accepted the standard loser punishment… you get the idea. Good fun all around, not counting the hangover the next day. All in all an incredible adventure.”

Nicole Peterson • USA

“Amigo,

getting pumped…keep seeing the swell models and it is just non-stop over there. hope it keeps up.

In cairo right now covering the egyptian presidential elections but my brain is already in indonesia. heading to istanbul for a couple of days, then back to gaza for some follow up and on to singapore

And indo, looking forward to cold bintangs, fresh fish, hitting my head going in and out of the bunk house, wearing a sweaty wrestling mask and of course looking at tube after tube uncork themselves empty and perfect across newly shifted reefs.

See you soon man.”

Manuel the Seppo • Washington D.C

“Just a quick note to say thanks for the trip on Afrika. We had a great time!

Yu and the crew looked after us impeccably. Organising our surfboards, dropping us at the line-up and picking us up, cleaning the cabin, manning the dingy whilst we fished for tuna, providing the food etc etc. Even if we were looking for faults, there were none to be found. The experience was awesome.

Yu is to be commended. His gentle persistence rewarded us with some good waves.

The whole crew is to be commended. Especially when they would get us underway in the early hours of the morning to have us at a break by ourselves at dawn.

Thanks for us all.”

Steve Colgate

“Hi Scuzz,

We’re all back in Oz, after the adventure of a lifetime. Adam was a total legend, he’s a real asset to sum surfari’s. his knowlenge of the areas we surfed in was spot on. And he tells a good story or 2…All the crew made the onboard time unreal – we had plenty of laughs with the boys.

Slayer – thanks again for all the email info.

Looking forward to booking the next one.”

Ray Blaikie • Australia

“Pure filth was the only way to describe it. Had the best waves of me life. (Spot name witheld) was just increble. Everyone got the best waves of their life at (spot name withheld). It was easy 4 – 6ft, unreal.

Thanks for all ya help mate. I’m keen to book for next year soon . Would like to go north on if that’s cool. Shello and Jo and the crew were unreal. Got us some mental waves and all the boys on the boat got on unreal.

Thanks again mate – you made booking the trip so easy.”

Greg “Numo” Sullivan

“Gidday,

Just to let you know we were really stoked with the trip we did with the Afrika on the 21st May (2005). The whole process, from booking the trip to Elvis dropping us off at Padang airport, couldn’t have been easier.

Yu was bloody good. Very professional, always planning, and was spot on with every decision. Good bloke, too. Next time we will try to book Yu first, then whatever boat!

We were “surfed out” at the end of every day. Probably 3/4 of the time we surfed with just our crew out, and we got 2 sick days at Maccas with only one other boat. To top it off, Yu took some nice footage of us getting shacked and burned it on to DVD.

Can’t say enough good things about the rest of the crew. Good feeds and they even delivered us drinks during our marathon sessions. And Monkey was as mad as a maggot – good value. That guy needs to go to Hollywood.

Bad points? – I ain’t playing that dice game ever again.”

Nick Webb • New Zealand

“Danny,

Speaking on behalf of our crew I must say you guys are truly the absolute BEST!!!!!!!!

This was a trip of a lifetime for all of us!!! Everything came together perfectly due to the obvious time you have spent both searching out waves (figuring out conditions etc) and dialing in your crew. Slayer did an excellent job of corresponding and keeping us informed every step of the way. Every commitment he made came true. He made us all feel as though we chose the right charter and put us at ease from the beginning. Also his communication with our families regarding the unfortunate earthquake illustrated how on top of things he is. He got information to our families ASAP in a very sincere manner (making our return trip that much easier on the home front). Yu was absolutely amazing!!! He was responsible for ensuring we got the best waves each day had to offer while being one step ahead of the crowd. This was accomplished every day without the slightest doubt!!!

Yu is most definitely an expert at knowing and understanding each particular spot including all contributing conditions. We scored waves everyday because of his excellent decisions!!! On top of all of that he put together the most amazing DVD that captured all of our footage including his. This was absolutely over the top and we were all blown away!!!! Cochi did a great job getting us to each spot safely with the best vantage points possible. We all felt safe with Cochi at the wheel!!! Tulang was absolutely amazing. The food was excellent and furthermore Tulang catered to our every need (smoothies, tea, etc). Every meal was delicious!!! Bujong never stopped working and was always there to help with anything that could arise (setting up fishing poles, driving the skiff, fixing things). He has an incredible work ethic! Soja was awesome!!! He made our beds daily, even washed our clothes a couple of times. He drove us in the skiff and was always there to handle our boards (which we never had to lift a finger). And last but definitely not least Hasan. Always smiling and always on it!! He never let us paddle. He ensured we ALWAYS had a ride to the line up!!! He also helped make our beds and help us with whatever we needed.

As you can see we were pampered and felt like royalty while cruising through the most wave rich area in the world!!! You and your staff are so awesome that in order for the words to do justice one must experience it first hand!!! You all are truly the best at what you do!!! Thank you all from all of us!!!! To repeat a common quote from our crew, “That was the best trip of my life”!!!!!!

We are looking forward to our next trip with you guys and will be requesting (within reason) your same crew.”

Josh Offill • Central California

“G’day Scuzz,

Thanks for an amazing experience. It seems there are plenty of people in Ocean Grove and Barwon who know you. Greg and Matt were really happy that Aki remembered them and Tim (Mini’s brother) says hi. The SS legend is growing I think.

Our guys could not have wanted anything more. They’re all stoked. Eri’s food was fantastic and for the swell size we had, the trip was optimized to get the most out of what was there from day to day. The footage and photos are great.

It seems to me there would be few others that have your knowledge and karma with the local people and locations you took us to. The trip was much more than I had imagined and I know that each of us came away completely stuffed but totally regenerated. It is the best surfing I have done.

I reckon this grab from one of the videos says it all. The guys’ 50, surfed all his life, all over the world, big waves, been in Tracks, everything and on our way home, tells me this trips the best thing he’s done. We can’t thank you enough for the great time you made possible for us…

Best wishes and keep enjoying that special warm mirror water and beautiful places as I know you do.”

Mark • Australia

“Scuzz,

Thanx for the refresher on the eternal quest for our holy grail… but then again there’s always the DVD for a quick fix….the DVD has taken on an almost mythical status for the surf-subculture here in the shadow of Mother Rincon… and your Spielburg-esque direction and editing is always justly credited with the pleasure everyone seems to get while watching this docudrama… your personal touch makes it way more then just some footage of our vacation….one of my good friends actually begged me for a copy and he claims he gets more enjoyment out of your little epic then any of his commercial surf flicks… it’s a bit embarrassing… go figure!

As for your question about our slot for next year, well as was decided on the boat, its May on S.C. with you as our “Fearless Leader”.”

Jeff Boyd

“Aloha Sumatra Surfariis,

We had a great 17 day trip on the southern cross from the flattest flat on the first day to huge 10 feet the last day! I must say I prefer the medium 4 to 5 foot days (hawaiian style) where there’s no fear factor, yet nice barrels to be had like the first picture on the photos section of your website. Big Henry as they call me was stoked along with almost everyone else…

Thanx for providing the means to find killer waves in another paradise.”

Big Henry Scroggin • Kona, HI

“Just wanted to write and say what an incredible experience I had on Afrika during our trip in late Aug – early Sept (2004).

Although we didn’t have the mind blowing perfection and always sunny days, I believe this worked in our favour and we had lots of unreal quality uncrowded waves, the highlight being 3 to 5 foot Maccas to ourselves on the last day. Still buzzing from that surf now. Caught 75 waves there (run out of time for the century) and each was one to be cherished for always. We kept thinking we had achieved the highlight as we progressed but the perfect script was our last day…

What a wonderful and caring crew all characters. Yu was a great guide always keeping a card up his sleeve that he would produce at the last moment. Still trying to figure out how he bribed all the other boats to leave Maccas. One even had a cute Japanese girl on board. He is definitely dedicated to his job. He would have to be the James Dean of Japan.

Thanks again Chris for your unreal guided tour of Padang, and Christina was a warm and caring hostess who made us all feel right at home.

Congrats once again to an awesome operation.”

Dave Graham • Phillip Island, Victoria

“The most impressive thing about our trip was the skill and knowledge of the captain. We always seemed to be at the right spot at the right time, every time. Other boats would arrive hours or days later and miss epic waves. “You should have been here a few hours ago” was a common saying to surfers from other boats, when they finally arrived. Our captain knew when and where it was going off like a true local. Thanks Chris for an unforgettable trip.

I’m now addicted, see you next year.”

Andy Gannan • Australia

“With waves that good and with guides like that your surfing just improves so much, just mindblowing. I wouldn’t choose any other charter, that`s the truth.”

Dave Strudwick • New Zealand

“Coming from Hawaii we`re spoiled with waves, but the trip on Afrika I scored the best waves of my life. I’m also a vegetarian and they cooked meals just for me, great captain, great crew.”

Matthew Corigliano • Kauai

“What makes the Sumatran Surfariis different from all other Indo charters is the local knowledge of the crew. We were very concerned about safety, but when we realised that this boat was run by indo`s who know the local waters and who have been fishing these islands for many years our nerves were at rest. Sure the AFRIKA is no Indies Trader, but it can travel further and faster and it’s Indo design makes you feel like you belong in those waters.

Looks like the 7 of us will be back again this summer and are ready to sit in the tube again. Thanks for the great trip Chris.”

Dan Feuerstein • San Luis Obispo, CA

“Before I went to the Mentawais I had no idea there were waves this good anywhere in the world. We’d wake up to perfect warm and uncrowded surf every frickin day, it was outahand! I’d come out of a barrel and think it was the best barrel of my life only to get a better one on my next wave.

The food was unreal, and Chris made the trip complete. Even though there are bigger, more expensive boats in the islands, I wouldn’t want to go back on another boat without Scuzz.”

Jason Lesh • Santa Barbara, CA

“I have been on three trips with Sumatran Surfariis, and I am going on my fourth this summer. The more I know about Boat Trips from my experiences and those of other people I’ve met along the way, the more confident I am with Scuzz and his boys! Weather it is the Mentawais or “Up North” these guys know what is up. On my second trip, on the flattest days, we got waves. On the windy stormy day, we got offshore conditions.

When the crowds were getting a bit thick, we got surf by ourselves. I’d compare notes about those days with other guys we’d see in the line ups. And some of their captains were totally amiss. Many of the other crews did NOT surf on the flat day or the windy day, at all. We were stoked, Scuzz knew were to go and we surfed every single day. This is just the tip of the ice burg. If you are serious about your surfing and getting the best waves possible, go with these guys. Also, since Scuzz and Chritina own their own hotel, you are set as far as layovers or down times before the boat leaves. I’ve checked out the other hotels the “other” guys have to stay at and Batang Arau Hotel is much better. For one, it is beautiful and peaceful.

You don’t have to deal with seeing other surfer dudes and it is a great deal. A great place to chill and drink a beer and unwind from the flights and travel. Also Sumatran Surfariis are partnered with a Padang local, Om. If you hang out enough you can see that the locals and his crew really like and respect these guys, and that is important. As far as the two trips; Up North vs the Mentwais, I could write for ever. They are both insane. I can’t wait until my next trip, I’m counting down the days!”

David Keagy • San Francisco, CA