By ED SOUTHORN
THE best surfers in the world were forced out of competition yesterday by a huge pile of sand.
The storm swell pounding Gold Coast and Tweed beaches with six foot waves yesterday was too big for the Snapper Rocks "Superbank". And there is too much sand for Kirra, which used to be one of the world's best surfing waves.
Without consistent surf, the Quiksilver and Roxy Pro surfing contests were put on hold.
At Kirra yesterday morning, top surfers were towed into a few waves on jet skis and some other surfers were able to get to their feet by paddling into waves.
According to some long-time local surfers, the Tweed River Sand Bypass pumping system which created the Superbank five years ago wrecked Kirra's famous tubes. However, not everyone in the surfing fraternity agrees.
Others point out that although wave quality at Kirra has previously been better, the sand bypass project should not be blamed and the Superbank breaks more often than Kirra did in its heyday.
Surfrider Foundation area liaison representative Joseph Nowak, who has lived at North Kirra for 16 years, said the Port Frederick "red dredge" had dumped too much sand off Kirra.
Mr Nowak said the sand pumping pipeline at Froggie's Beach was sufficient to maintain the Superbank but the dredge should stop dumping sand at Kirra.
He said the Superbank did not always cope with a big swell but if Kirra had not been tampered with it would hold big waves.
"There is enough sand at Snapper but when the swell gets over six foot there is nowhere to surf," Mr Nowak said.
He claims it has been ruined by sand-pumping activities. KIRRA Surfrider Foundation liaison officer Joseph Nowak looks over what used to be one of the world's most renowned surfing breaks at Kirra.