Chris ‘Guts’ Griffiths – Addiction!

This month Chris Griffiths confesses to the addiction that has shaped his life – surfing.

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“My name is Chris Griffiths and I am a surf addict”. I have come to the conclusion that this statement must be true.

I have been a surfer for over 35 years. It has cost me several jobs, thousands of pounds and has made me unreliable to say the least – just ask my long suffering wife. I have missed weddings, funerals, christenings, anniversaries and birthdays all in the pursuit of finding the perfect wave.

Last week, with my addiction running wild, I decided it would be a good idea to jump in my van and drive the 1600 mile round trip to the north coast of Scotland on the hunt for my next big fix.

My plan was to drive the 12 hour journey through the night (so as not to eat into any potential surfing time) and live in the back of my van at several classic surf spots not far from John o’Groats.

I packed three duvets and plenty of warm clothes (it’s not tropical in March, in Scotland, in a van) along with my boards wetsuits and tins of spam for sustenance and I was off.

Several times during the drive, I questioned my sanity. Most normal people are wrapped up in bed at three in the morning, but here I was, high tailing it through the Scottish highlands in search of my drug of choice.

Classic days in surfing are rare and quite often, no matter how much effort and planning you put in, you can still come away short-changed. The swell can be perfect but the wind can turn onshore, or the swell just never arrives like it should – there are too many variables to predict exactly when and where perfect days will occur.

However, on this particular trip, I was rewarded with surfing gold. I scored the best couple of days of surf this coast had seen all winter. Perfect, thundering 6 to 8 ft barrels with light offshores at one of the best reef breaks in Europe.

I was in hog heaven. I was living out of my van overlooking the break and surfing myself stupid. It felt like all my Christmases had come at once!

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