Kirra kegs in monster swell

SURFERS were getting deep inside eight-foot Kirra barrels yesterday created by the second big swell to hit the coast in a month.

Only the best and bravest wave riders took on the waves which were almost impossible to navigate without the aid of a jet ski.

Local pros including Dean Morrison and Shaun Harrington, along with Gary Elkington were among the crew pulling into the kegs, sometimes emerging, sometimes not.

Even Hawaiian big-wave surfer Jamie O'Brien was in the line-up after flying into Australia specifically to surf Kirra.

For Harrington, taking on the scarily big waves was just good fun.

“It is pumping Kirra and it is not even crowded,” Harrington told the Tweed Daily News.

“There are a handful of locals getting pumping waves and barrels.”

Harrington paddled out, but jetski drivers were willing to give him a hand to bypass the walls of white water and move out the back.

“It is just fun, in a barrel, going past all the boys, giving them the finger and what not,” he said.

It is the second major swell in a month, after cyclone Hamish created a memor- able finish to the Quiksilver Pro at the same spot only a few weeks ago.

Harrington said yesterday's cleaner conditions were much better than during Hamish, when it was blown out

and messy.

Paul Stacey was another Coolangatta surfer braving the big conditions.

He paddled out and made one trip through Kirra, with a little help from a jet ski along the way.

“I got on one alright, so it made it worth it,” he said.

While the surfers themselves were understated about their feats, a large crowd gathered on the top of Kirra Hill and the shelter on the point, cheering if the riders emerged from the barrels, or groaning when they didn't make it.

Surf forecasting website Coastalwatch urged all non-experienced surfers to stay out of the water in the big conditions.

Coastalwatch predicts the swell to continue through the week.

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