Southern Promises

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Southern Promises


It was the last days of the North swell and everybody got tired of surfing small petty waves that came without force. A handful of driven surfers went further to less surfed spots and did get lucky with some good surf. But a longer trip than the usual meant more hassle, and it’s not really convenient to most. So it was surfing small, wind blown waves or either no surf at all. Skateboarding and travel and other summer leisure did scratch the itch but it’s all part of the waiting game.

And then the swell direction changed.

Swell charts now point from the South and it’s that time of the year again where favorite surf spots work like magic. Last week a swell was building up and forecast said 2-3ft waves were going to hit Zambales and La Union. We have planned this beforehand as a friend is celebrating her birthday. The fact there is some swell hitting LU cemented our plans to be there. Luckily for us there were some waves and we were stoked. Here are some photos.

in front of a friend’s place where we stayed. breaks during south swell. this place is gold.

well yeah. weren’t expecting much anyway. waves were small and intervals were long.

but the sun was hot and the sea was cold and clear. glad to be here.

sharing waves with our friend Frances Arbie, a very good and well known tattoo artist

this is her spot, her getaway.

Karla Rosales is stoked. double shaka stoked.

AC Alba is a beginner in surfing. but she gets a wall on this one.

birthday girl Miccah who has no other wish but to surf. wish granted 😉

and of course yours truly, just feelin’ the glide

action shots by Frances Arbie

We surfed over the weekend till our backs were burnt and till jellyfishes stung almost all parts of our bodies. The heat was incredible that weekend. Since we’re in transition the weather is humid and the air is dry and the day doesn’t know whether to let it rain or not – not summer anymore and not rainy season either. For the better part we were able to enjoy the small swell that came. Better than no surf at all.

Sunday afternoon we ended our sesh to marvel at the familiar La Union sunset. Majestic as always. And as the sky changes color a few locals were still surfing. We noticed that the waves that time were way better than any other day we surfed. It actually got better!

glassy breaks

Anthony Leubben big or small he will surf them all

and the session ends with Erwin Acosta with a glorious La Union backdrop

if these waves were a glimpse to what’s coming, we are in for a good season

It was a great weekend for us but we can’t wait till a legit South swell arrives and keep the spots pumpin’ with quality waves. There’s no no assurance though as it is hard to rely on storms for good surf. But for now let’s hold on to the promise for when the conditions are right this is about as good as Philippine Surfing gets. Prepare to get wet, prepare to get the biggest waves, prepare to get skunked, prepare for gloomy days and prepare for the best days of your life.

See you in the lineup.

words and photos by tj lokalsoul | @tjlokalsoul on Instagram


thanks Coy and Frances for the photos and for the great weekend we had. checkout:             

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Happy Birthday again Miccah. Checkout Miccah Doctolero’s awesome photos at


  1. KT says:

    wow! I always wanted to try surfing in other provinces aside from baler and la union. Gotta put that on my wanderlist! :p

    KT of

  2. Jem says:

    Galing-galing! You guys rock! I never thought surfing in the Philippines was this popular. Way to go!

  3. frances a says:

    can u teach me how to surf? you guys are so cool. I’m from Borongan Eastern Samar. And i’m a local. and i really wanna surf but i didn’t get the chance to because i don’t know the dudes who surf. and i was always in school! it sucks. lol

    enjoy the sun! wherever you may be guys! 🙂

  4. lokalsoul says:

    wow. there are amazing waves where you live! my suggestion is to go where surfing is in Borongan and befriend the surfers. They can teach you everything 🙂

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