MAY ALON SA GUBAT???
Known as “Breeding”, the surf spot among the white sand beaches of Brgy. Buenavista in Gubat, Sorsogon has always been surfable and consistent from the months of September to May. Historically, the first surfer at Breeding was a certain Berenguer of Sorsogon City who used an old balsa-type longboard way back in the 80’s when the site was still a Department of Agriculture livestock breeding site (hence the name Breeding). Through the years it has always been kept a secret, always kept below the radar. Although some Manila surfers way back in 1999 surfed on longboards in nearby Brgy. Rizal, they never surfed or explored the decent beach break just 1 km away.
Local surfers started surfing early 2008, learning how to surf from watching Youtube videos . Everyone was taking turns riding a single board which was an NSP 6’8 funboard. Amazingly enough, the second board we used came floating down the Pacific! We found an old damaged 8’0 Hawaian Island Creations longboard in early 2009, with the bottom full of gashes from hitting the reef with half a leash still attached. When the locals approached the Mayor for assistance, he immediately gave a budget for 3 more longboards and for the first time, you didn’t have to beat someone up just to take your turn to surf given the limited number of surfboards. With the advent of surplus or second hand boards cheaply available in ukay ukays in Manila, the locals started to learning and surfing using their own shortboards.
The transition from surfing the beginner friendly beach breaks of Breeding to the more consistent and powerful reef break at “Nicos” began when 5 of the local surfer boys decided to explore east of the “tambayan” (hang-out). Although frightened by the shallow live reef, they could not ignore the perfect peeling lefthander only a hundred meters offshore. The first to surf was the young reckless Nico (hence the reef’s name of Nicos), wiping out and miraculously climbing out of the water onto his board with nary a scratch on him. This emboldened the other surfers to test their luck surfing the reef break. And when they all returned to the tambayan, without a cut or bruise, they all concluded “Pwede pala mag sarpeng sa may bato!” (You can surf at the reef!).
This event led to further exploration of the surrounding towns with wave after wave being surfed, explored and documented. Local surfers holding onto their shortboards while driving motorbikes to the farthest points and barangays of the province are the norms in surf exploration of Sorsogon province. After almost 3 yrs of stoke the group has organized itself into an non profit youth oriented organization, GUBAT BAY SURFERS. And declaring to all visiting surfers MAY ALON SA GUBAT!!!
– BIDGE VILLARROYA
GUBAT BAY SURFERS
More pictures of Gubat surfing courtest of Bidge
our contributor Bidge, having fun at his home break
a goofy footer’s dream
Gubat is a 12 hour bus ride from Manila via Raymond or Philtranco bus lines. By air, one can take a flight to Legazpi then continue to Sorsogon by van and lastly a jeepney ride to Gubat. Food and transpo are cheap and as far as accomodation goes, the locals are currently working on a surf camp with cooking area, drinking water and bathrooms. A tent, a surfboard, a surfer surrounded by nature and getting acquainted with the locals – that seems to be a perfect surf trip. Surfing in Gubat has now definitely become an item on our bucket list.
*Many thanks to Bidge Villarroya of the Gubat Bay Surfers for contributing and giving light to surfing in Gubat, Sorsogon. May good things – ONLY good things – happen and develop to your beloved spot – a great and must see destination in Philippine Surfing.
Check out this video of Gubat surfing