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Doc & Carol McDermott – Living in Smiths Valley since the 70s.

In 1975 young hippies Doc & Carol McDermott moved down south and bought a coffee rock cottage in Smiths valley. They had power but no scheme water.

DocIn the early 70s I met two NZ girls on Smiths Beach. There were renting the stone farmhouse (north of other farm houses) in Smiths Valley. I wanted to live in the region, so I bought the cottage off the Mining Company. The property was over grown with weeds when we moved in.

Photos: 1975 McDermott’s coffee rock cottage in Smiths Valley. Photos courtesy of Doc & Carol.

1975 Doc cottage 6 collage_photocat

Doc – Our coffee rock house was built by Merv Smith in 1924. Merv was a member of the Smith family that the local beach was named after.

Photos: 1975 McDermott’s coffee rock cottage in Smiths Valley. Photos courtesy of Doc & Carol.

1975 Doc cottage 7 collage_photocat

Photo: 1975 Doc & Carol with their hound at the cottage. Photo courtesy of Doc & Carol.

1975 Smiths Valley Doc & Carol McDermott cottage DSC_1274 (8)

Doc The cottage was built amongst the trees and had a dirt track winding around the house. Entry to the dirt track was from Caves Road to the north. A wooden bridge near the house burnt down in a bush fire in the 70s.

Photos: 1970s. Carol & hound and the site of former wood bridge. Photo courtesy of Doc & Carol.

1975 Doc & Carol cottage 7 collage_photocat

Photos: 1970s Carol working in the garden with the chooks. Photos courtesy of Doc & Carol.

1975 Carol working in the garden 4 collage_photocat

CarolDoc was surfing back then. He’d been following in his brother Richard’s footsteps and came down south with him and his mates while in Subiaco Primary School. He came down all through his teens with Rowie, Horny, John Fox and Gary Daniels.

Photo: 1970s Doc relaxing on the verandah with his hounds. Photo courtesy of Doc & Carol.

1975 Smiths Valley Doc & Carol McDermott cottage DSC_1274 (2)

In the 1980s Doc & Carol replaced the tin roof on their cottage.

1980 Doc Cottage re-roof collage_photocat

Doc still surfs in the SW (and beyond) on his single fin surfboard.

Photo: 2010 Doc leaving the surf at Yalls. Bruce King pic.

2010 Doc McDermott & wife Carol NOV19 036 (2)

Footnotes:

  1.  In the 1990s Doc & Carol McDermott ran the Mulberry Lane Garden Nursery on the property.
  2. In the 70s Swiss Chef/surfer Hans Kopp’s Lobster Pot restaurant at Smiths Beach turn-off was made of mud brick.
  3. Coley Road was built about 1979 (Coley Road runs off Caves Road & is located south of the McDermott’s place). Local residents Dave and Kate Scholes were required to put in Coley Road and provide access to new blocks further up the hill when they sub divided their property. Dave had so many arguments with the Shire and the road ended up costing him so much that he thought it should be called Scholes Road.
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1978 Margaret River Rowing Regatta

In the 70s the Margaret River Rowing Club held Rowing Regattas on the Margaret River near Wallcliffe House.

Margaret River locals and visiting SW surfers met on the bank of the river to compete in the Regatta’s rowing boat and surfboard paddle races and enjoy a drink or two.

Margaret surfer Adrian Wilson attended the regattas in the 70s. These are his comments.

Early MR Rowing Regattas

 Adrian Wilson – In the early Regattas big John Hohnen used to cruise around with a shotgun under his arm as a deterrent to bikies who used to turn up….there used to be a massive tug of war with a heavy duty rope…I can’t remember who was against who…was it held on Australia Day?

Back then one could drive down to the un-renovated Wallcliffe House…unfortunately the historic house built in 1865 is no longer with us after the Marg River bush fire in 2011.

It was a classic day….. the paddle race was so popular the organisers were forced to impose board design rules to prevent unfair advantage. The first couple of regattas in 76/77 Billy Gibson won the surfboard race with me second…Sam Sadleir’s run came a bit later. I have memories of trying to catch Billy Gibson…but just couldn’t bridge the gap. I saw Billy out at Huzzas today…his high speed paddle style hasn’t changed!

Billy was part of a hard core Scarborough surf crew…all great surfers…who used to frequent down south in the 70s…the Waller brothers (Mark and Paul), Shaun Atkinson, Kim Hewton just to mention a few.

Paul Waller was a handsome young chap…one particular night at the Margaret River tavern he was drinking a flaming shot….a bump on his shoulder resulted in a minor burn on his cheek….Paul was very worried about a scar. That night the car he was a passenger in hit a cow on Wallcliffe Road….next time I saw Paul he had plaster on one arm and various bandages…I said that on the bright side, you couldn’t see the burn on his cheek.

Life at Margs in the 70s had much more of a pioneering carefree atmosphere. Life was much simpler then….only one food shop…Wesfarmers…and the tuckshop for apricot pies with cream….no mobile phones, internet or 24 hour news cycle.

1978 MR Rowing Regatta

Adrian Wilson – Classic photos of the ‘78 event with many familiar faces… I reckon this was towards the end of the regattas at Wallcliffe House (don’t think the shotgun patrols were still going)…..

PD is sitting next to the beautiful Irena….

Typical in the background of Hog Hannett is a beautiful woman.

Great photo of Ric Chan in full flight……I don’t remember Tony Harbo doing the loudspeaker thing….don’t think he featured in the early ones…but I could be wrong.

Sam Sadlier was a grom when I surfed at Cottesloe…but it was obvious he had amazing talent and general athletic ability…..he went on to be a great surfer……I saw him a few years ago, now living in Bunbury I think.

One surprising omission from these early photos are images of the Hocking brothers…Bruce and Ian and Col Ladhams. They were regulars at Margarets……Bruce the master of getting barrelled at the Margaret River mouth. Bruce Hocking was an amazing surfer…his backhand surfing at lefties was even by today’s standards outstanding. These guys used to stay with Rod White in his converted bus next to the speedway track in Margaret River.

Col Ladhams used to shape at Len Dibben’s in North Freo until Greirson Surfboards started…….

Many thanks to photojournalist Ric Chan for the social photos and Adrian for his recollections.

1. 1978 Rowing Regatta Races

Yallingup surfing legend Tony Harbison was MC and called the rowing & paddle races.

Race Photos #1: Rowing races.
Top: Spectators watching rowing race from river bank.
Bottom: (Left) Race caller Tony Harbison with loud hailer. (Right) Spectators.

1978 MR Rowing Regatta Race1 Rowing collage_photocat

In the 70s Cottesloe surfer Sam Sadleir won the paddle board race two years running. Marg River’s Bill Gibson & Gary Greirson also competed in the paddle races.

Race Photos #2: Paddle Board Races.
(Left) Sam Sadleir preparing for paddle board race. (Right) Paddle Board race & support crew.

1978 MR Rowing Regatta race2 paddle Sam Sadleir collage_photocat

Race Photos #3: Paddle board races.
(Left) Gary Greirson preparing for paddle board race. (Right) Gaz competing in paddle race.

Gaz Greirson – “That’s me coming last in next pic.”

1978 MR Rowing Regatta race3 Paddle Gary Greirson collage_photocat

Race Photos #4: Competitors
Top: (Left) Margaret River Rowing Club officials L-R Kim Davis, Don Drabble & Stewie Thomas. (Right) unidentified female competitor.
Bottom: Competitors rehydrating under trees between events. Mitch with Greg Russell in the middle and Dave Simmons (Cottesloe) in Hawaiian shirt on the right.

1978 MR Rowing Regatta Race4 competitors collage_photocat

2. 1978 Rowing Regatta Social

There was a strong social aspect to the Rowing Regatta with families & friends participating.

Attendees competed and enjoyed a cold beer or sipped wine under the trees in the afternoon and then stayed on for Graham Noakes’ ‘Windspan Band’ which played at the Regatta Dance held afterwards in the Club House on the river Bank.

Peter ‘Reffo’ Felton (Yalls) recalls – “one year bikies tried to join the party but they were quickly dispersed by locals and visiting surfers.”

A fun time was had by all.

Social Photos #1:
Top: (Left) unidentified girl with beer keg in background. (Right) social gathering
Bottom: (Left) social gathering (Right) unidentified persons.

1978 MR Rowing Regatta social1 collage_photocat

Social Photos #2:
Top: (Left) Girls & hounds. Deb from Byron Bay on the right. Deb married & moved to Kalbarri. (Right) young girl getting a tan.
Bottom: (Left) Mother & baby (Right) unidentified.

1978 MR Rowing Regatta social2 collage_photocat

Social Photos #3:
Top: (Left) Ric Gath’s brother. (Right) Dennis Lindsay & unidentified. Dennis’s brother Eion ran the Berry Farm for years
Bottom: (Left) Chris Reynolds. (Right) Chris ‘Feggsey’ Fullston (Mandurah, Kalbarri & SW).

1978 MR Rowing Regatta social3 collage_photocat

Social Photos #4:
Top: (Left) Ric Chan. (Right) Marina with baby.
Bottom: (Left) Trinity Tate (Right) Syd Tate.

1978 MR Rowing Regatta social4 collage_photocat

Social Photos #5:
Top: (Left) Rankin Wise. Rankin & his brother Sandy were from a local family. Mum Wise could not control her wayward sons. (Right) George Tocas (Yalls).
Bottom: (Left) unidentified (Right) unidentified.

1978 MR Rowing Regatta social5 collage_photocat

Social Photos #6:
Top: (Left) social gathering under the trees. (Right) unidentified couple
Bottom: (Left) Peter Davison (Trigg) & girlfriend. (Right) Steve ‘Hog’ Hannett (Trigg).

1978 MR Rowing Regatta social6 collage_photocat

Social Photos #7:
Top: (Left) drinks tent. (Right) Ric Chan, Gary Greirson, Trinity Tate & Marina under the trees.
Bottom: (Left) Feeding time. (Right) unidentified.

1978 MR Rowing Regatta social7 collage_photocat (2)

 

 

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1960s Dyso’s school days

In the mid 60s Dalkeith student Peter ‘Dyso’ Dyson attended Hale School in Wembley Downs.

Peter had a taste for surfing and was a junior member of the Cottesloe Surf Board Club.

This is a collection of his school days memorabilia.

Photo: Mid 60s Hale School class photo (Peter bottom left). Peter Dyson pic.

1960s Hale School Peter Dyson - PD pic h810

We used to trail a fishing line out the back of the rowing boat while training on the Swan River.

Photo: mid 60s Hale Rowing Team training on the Swan River. L-R Neil Davis, Peter Dyson & Ray Tarik. Peter Dyson pic.

1960s Hale Rowing Team with fish line at back Neil Davis, Peter Dyson & Ray Tarik - PD pic IMG_0018

Photo: Mid 60s Band Major Peter Dyson leading the Hale School Army Cadet Band. Peter Dyson pic

1960s Hale School Army Cadet Band Peter Dyson Band Major - PD d812

Photo: Mid 60s Band Major Peter Dyson (with mace baton) leading the Hale School Army Cadet Band in a march past parade at Hale School. Peter Dyson pic.

1960s Hale School Army Cadet Band Peter Dyson Band Major - PD pic IMG_0036

Photo: Mid 60s Peter Dyson & school mates standing in front of Pete’s Kombi loaded with surfboards. Peter Dyson pic.

1960s Hale School Peter Dyson's Kombi & boards - PD pic IMG_0034

I made a 12 ft kayak for my Junior Woodwork exam. It was constructed of timber batons & had a canvas cover made drum tight. I surfed it predominately at the Cove and sometimes Cottesloe & Halls Head.

Back then there were no surfing wetsuits so I used an old school jumper covered with a dive suit top.

Photo: Mid 60s Peter Dyson land surfing on a finless surfboard with school mates. Peter Dyson pic.

1960s Hale School Peter Dyson standing on surfboard - PD pic IMG_0009

This following photo was taken at the Cove near Cottesloe.  I am in the group and Ashley Jones is on the right with striped board. He later married my sister Nina and became my Brother-in-law.

Image: 1960s Peter Dyson with Ashley Jones and other college students at the Cove. Media image courtesy of WA Newspapers.

1960s Cove Cottesloe Ashley Jones & Peter Dyson - Daily News IMG_0056

I negotiated with the Headmaster and was instrumental in getting approval for our school to participate in Interschool Surfboard Riding Championships.

Image: 1966 Headmaster’s letter to parents regarding student participation in Interschool Surfboard Riding Championships. Peter Dyson image.

1966 Hale School letter from headmaster - PD image IMG_0006

Image: 1966 Ken Dyson’s (Peter’s dad) response to headmaster’s letter concerning student participation in Interschool Surfboard Riding Championships. Peter Dyson image.

1966 Ken Dyson letter to Hale School - PD image IMG_20160509_0007

In 1965 I won the individual award at the inaugural State Schoolboys individual and Interschool Surfboard Riding Championships held at Scarborough Beach.

In 1966 I was runner-up to Aquinas College student Ian Doig in the Individual section of the State Schoolboys Championships at Scarborough Beach. Scarborough’s Ian ‘Moochie’ Strongman was third.

Images: 1965 & 66 State Schoolboys championship results courtesy of Daily News.

1965-66 Scarborough State Schoolboys comp results - Daily News IMG_001

I went onto bigger & better things in surfing, entertainment & business.

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Rich Myers’ Surf-Travel-Misadventures Trilogy Part #3

Yallingup water man Rich Myers started his water adventures in Southern California in the 60s. From there he surfed, sailed & fished the seven seas until he moved to Yallingup in 1990s.

Rich lives, works, surfs, dives and fishes in the SW. He continues to have hilarious encounters with land & marine animals and is still accident prone!

This is the third part of Rich’s Surf-Travel-Misadventures Trilogy.

Click on this link to view Part 1. California – Mexico – Hawaii (late 1960s-79)
Click on this link to view Part 2. California –Fiji – Mexico – Hawaii – Cook Islands – South Africa. (1980-89)

Part 3. Yallingup WA (1990-present).

In 1987-88 I met Yallingup’s Jos Farrell (Jim & Amanda Farrell’s daughter) and SW surfer/windsurfer David Sheen at a windsurfing event in Maui Hawaii & they told me about Yallingup WA.

I later teamed up with Jos in Bali and we had a son Reif.

I didn’t know there was surf in the SW when I first visited from Hawaii in 1990. I came with Jos as it was her home. It was a bonus that there were good waves in the SW.

In 1992 our relationship broke up and I moved from the States to Yallingup to be with my son Reif for a while. I travelled back and forth from Hawaii until 1995 when I sold my rental house in Maui and settled in Yallingup WA.

Photo: 1992 Rich and son Reif with a friendly roo at the Banamah Wildlife Park Dunsborough. Rich Myers pic.

1992 Rich Myers with roo & baby Reif IMG_0002

Family

In 1992 I met my partner Anne at her workplace in the Doctors surgery at Dunsborough.

I was always getting cuts and scratches from work and was stoked that stitches were cheap in WA compared to the USA. Anne was hot looking but I thought she was a Doctor’s wife…I later found out she wasn’t! My estranged wife Jos and her mother Mandy thought Anne liked me and told me to ask her out. Mandy (my mother-in-law) ironed my shirt so I would look good on my first date with Anne. Afterwards Anne told me she liked me because I always paid my medical bills. Ha!

Anne had 4 kids from previous marriages (Chad, Keaton, Dan & Sinead) and then we had Ry and with my son Reif, we had 6 kids in a matter of a year. An instant ‘Brady Bunch Down Under’.

Poor Anne had 6 kids plus me = 7 kids……luckily all the kids surfed!

I realised my wild times were over and I’ve tried to be a responsible father. Anne & I have been together for over 20 years.

Photos: 1990s (Left) Rich & Anne at Ry’s birthday party (Right) Ry’s first surf lesson. Rich Myer pics.

1990s Rich Myers family pics 3 collage_photocat

Occupation

I work as a carpenter/builder with surfer Bevan Carr. Bevan is married to former full-time pro surfer Melanie Redman Carr.

I’m not a silver spooner and have worked since I was age 12, my parents didn’t support me. I learnt my trade from the best builder John Narby and did my carpentry apprenticeship in America. I always knew I would need a job once my single lifestyle finished. I work hard and play hard, it is a good balanced lifestyle & I enjoy the creativity and independence of my job.

I’m just a carpenter and not materialistic, but I was born with the name Rich and I will die Rich. Ha!

Anne & I have built two houses in the SW. In 1999 we built our first house at Dunsborough. Then in the early 2000s we bought a bushland block on a hill at Yallingup and built our second house.

We now live in our Yallingup house with our kids Ry and Sinead.

Photos: Rich & Anne’s SW houses. .

Top: 1999 (Left) Rich & Anne’s first house they built Dunsborough. (Right) Rich and his dog ‘Bat’ in Dunsborough. Photos Rich Myers.

Bottom: Early 2000s Yallingup house with Rich’s ‘Man Shed’ on the right. Photo Jim King

Rich Myers houses 3 collage_photocat

Accidents/Mishaps

I have been involved in a number of serious work related accidents & tend to be accident-prone.

I fell from a roof while doing a roof restoration job and luckily landed on my head. I cracked my eye socket,temple bone and skull from forehead to neck and had a HUGE headache. The Doctor said “I was like Humpty Dumpty and cracked like an egg”. Afterwards I had a form of amnesia & lost my ability to use adjectives and adverbs – I couldn’t described things!  When I was playing Scrabble for coins my mates took advantage of me because I couldn’t remember words! Thoseunscrupulous bastards Ha ha!

On another occasion, I was working on a hot tin roof and became dehydrated. I lost 7 litres of fluid and spent two days in hospital on a saline drip. I lost a lot of weight & looked like a holocaust victim.

The funny part is I have lived through many serious accidents. I’ve been lucky and I’m grateful for being alive.

SURFING

My first surf in the SW was at Bears with Injidup’s Ken Eichenberg (ex US) and Yallingup’s Steve Russo. The wind was offshore and while Steve Russo hassled in the line-up, I slipped under the radar and got heaps of waves. It was great that it turned out the SW had good surf and I met my partner Anne.

Photos: Early 2000s Rich surfing Bears. Twiggy Sharland pics.

Rich Myers at Bears Twiggy Sharland pics collage_photocat

Mitch & Damon at Margs

Top WA surfers Mitch Thorson, Damon Eastaugh & Courtney Grey used to take me surfing at Marg’s Bombie and Boat Ramp for fun. I appreciated the fact that they were better surfers than me and yet they still saved good waves for me. They would say “don’t take the crumbs Rich, you go”. Mitch would lend me his 8’11” Mick Manolos gun board and he would forfeit paddle power and ride his 8′ Mick Manolos gun board in the 10-12ft waves. Mitch was sponsored by MM at the time.

I had not seen that friendliness anywhere in the world. I was below their level, but they still called me into waves. It didn’t happen in the States, it was dog eat dog over there.

Photo: Late 1990s Rich surfing solid Yalls. Twiggy Sharland pic.

1990s Yallingup Rich Myers Twiggy pic IMG_0004

Wave Sharing

I have always been hypo in and out of the water, but thankfully Yallingup surfers Vance Burrow & Loz Smith tuned me onto the fact that the best way to catch waves is for everyone to take turns. I became more aware & now really have more fun because everyone is stoked! Never forget there is always a well-deserved pecking order at every break. Always have respect for older surfers because if you are lucky enough, you might be one of them one day!

Yallingup Main Break is a live cemetery where old surfers never die….they just multiply!

Photos: 2005 Yalls Rich profile and surfing main break. Loz Smith pics.

2005 Yalls Rich Myers Loz Pics collage_photocat

Respect the Ocean

I have natural instinct and feel when surfing and diving in the oceans of the world. You may not see set waves coming, but if you are tuned in and aware to what is moving and such, you can read the conditions and feel it. When diving under water, I watch seaweed movement and feel currents, so I always know where the shore is. I’ve been doing it so long and tune in and feel the tide, energy, swells and watch for indicators etc. Tune in to nature, quit following others & become an individual. You have to learn to respect the ocean. If it doesn’t feel right, I’m not into it!

Mitch Thorson and Damon Eastaugh have an innate ability to read ocean conditions and are top watermen.

Photo: 2012 Video cameraman Steve Russo stalking Rich Myers on the steps at Yallingup. Photo credit Bruce King.

Yalls Rich Myers MAY20.2012 026

Favourite Longboard

I had my long board hand made by Bill Foote in Hawaii 14 years ago. It is made of polystyrene foam & epoxy resin. I only use the board at Yallingup. It has snapped twice and been repaired. On a trip to Hawaii, I took the two pieces of broken board with me for repairs (there was no-one here to fix EPS boards back then) and the guy at Hawaii airport charged me for two boards. I argued that it was one broken board, but he was a big ‘Brudda’ and I had to pay double!

Photos: 2012-13 Rich Myers ripping Yallingup rights on his favourite long board. Bruce King pics.

2012-3 Rich Myers Yallingup - Bruce King collage_photocat

Andrew ‘Mo’ Mills

I have a jet ski and indulge in tow-in surfing on big SW waves.

Andrew ‘Mo’ Mills was my tow-in partner. In 2006 on the day Damon Eastough won the “Wave of the Year Award” at Cow Bombie. Mo & I went and surfed Marg’s Bombie and Gas Bay bombies on our own. We had to launch the Jet Ski at Kilcarnup Beach as it was too rough for Marg’s boat ramp. The waves were huge & gnarly at Marg’s Bombie. Mo towed me into some big ones then when it was his turn Mo got nailed on a huge 30ft wave. He loved big waves and came up wanting more!

In the 2000s Mo was diagnosed with malignant skin cancer and was given one year to live. In his final year I would take Mo surfing whenever possible & Steve Russo videoed his sessions so his son Henry would have surfing memories of his dad. He surfed big waves to the end. He was on steroids and would come up laughing after bad wipe-outs.

Mo died age 41 leaving a wife & son. We had a funeral & paddle out for Mo at Yallingup when he passed away in 2010.

Image: 2004 Mo (inside) & Jake Paterson wave sharing at Cow Bombie. Rich towed Mo into the wave. Image courtesy of Twiggy Sharland and Waves Magazine.

2004 Cow Bombie Jake & Mo Waves Mag - Twiggy pic 1 IMG_002

Man Shed

I have a man shed on my property. It includes a ‘Mo’seum (named after my mate Mo) containing memorabilia from surfing friends who have passed-on plus my own collection of wind surfing/surfing memorabilia.

The ‘Mo’seum is a memoriam to my dead friends. Jim Farrell, Steve Boniani, Twiggy Sharland, Jordan & Mo. Mo’s yellow coloured tow-in surfboard hangs on the wall.

Photos: 2016 Rich in his ‘Mo’seum at Yallingup. Jim King pics.

2016 Rich Myers man cave 1 collage_photocat

Photos: 2016 some of Rich’s artefacts in his ‘Mo’seum at Yallingup. Jim King pics.

2016 Rich Myers artefacts 5 collage_photocat

2015 Andrew Mills – Mo’s Ashes

In June 2015 I spread my mate Mo’s ashes in a tube ride at Yallingup Main Break.

Mo & I had deep in-depth talks when it was discovered his cancer was terminal. And I promised to tow-in his ashes into a big barrel at Yallingup.

Photo: 2015 Yalls Rich’s boat & Geoff North’s Jet-Ski waiting out the back prior to ‘Mo’ ashes tube ride. Bruce King pic.

Yalls rich Myers JUNE27.2015 010 (2)

2015 Image: Surf Filmmaker & big wave charger Adz Kennedy covered the ‘Mo ashes’ event in his web article 7 Feb 2015.

2015 Yalls Rich & Mo _2015-07-02 - Cropped

Editor’s note: Rich was age 59 at the time.

Photo: 2015 Rich surfing in Mo’s tube at Yalls. Dev Coote pic.

2015 Yalls Rich Myers in Mo's ashes tube - Dev Coote pic DSC_1706

FISHING

My father-in-law Jim Farrell & I hookah dived in the SW for many years. I learnt a lot about diving & fishing from my father in law.

Photos: (Left) 2010 Rich, Jim Farrell & son Reif at Yallingup. (Right) 1960s Jim Farrell with a groper at Caves House Yallingup. Images courtesy of Farrell family.

2010 Jim Farrell with Rich & Reif IMG_0002

Photos: 1996-2000s Fish, Cray & Abalone catches.

Top: (Left) Rich with abalone & lobster catch at Bunker Bay. (Right) Rich & Reif with fish catch at Jim Farrell’s place Yalls. Photos courtesy of Twiggy Sharland & Rich Myers.

Bottom: (Left) Rich & Ry with jumbo cray at Yalls. (Right) Reif, Rich & Ry with the days catch at Gnaraloo. Rich Myers pics.

Rich Myers fishing catches 7 collage_photocat

Beaver 1 & 2.

I have always been a beaver lover. My partner Anne and mate Chris ‘Feggsey’ Fullston are beavers lovers too!

Feggsey knew I like beavers and bought a pair of ‘beaver slippers’ back from Canada for me.

Anne wants to disown me when I wear my beaver slippers to the Dunsborough shops. Ha!

One of my beaver slippers has one eye and the other two. I named my boat Beaver 1 and jet-ski Beaver 2 after my slippers.

Photos: 2016 Rich modelling his Beaver slippers at Yallingup. Jim King pics

2016 Beaver slippers 3 collage_photocat

Photos: 2016 Rich’s boat Beaver 1 at Yallingup. Jim King pics.

2016 Beaver 1 Rich Myers collage_photocat

Boat drive-off.

Near the end, Jim Farrell got Alzheimers (dementia) and became forgetful. On one boat trip off Moses I was underwater on the hookah searching in a cave for crays when he took off in the boat. I was dragged underwater for nearly a mile. Luckily I was still attached to the hookah. When he finally stopped and realised what happened, he said “Oh Rich, I forgot I brought you!

Photo: 1960s Jimbo Farrell with jumbo crays at Yallingup. Photo courtesy of Farrell family.

Jim Farrell jumbo crays IMG_0001

ANIMAL CAPERS

I love animals and they are attracted to me, apparently!

Humped by wobbegong shark.

I was diving with Jim Farrell in 9 metres of water off Yalls. Jim was after crays and I was after dhufish. I was resting on the bottom & saw a dhufish swim into a cave. I followed it then I felt something heavy on top of me & thought it was Jim being silly. But it was a big green brown thing with pectoral fins. A 10ft wobbegong shark had landed on top of me like a submarine. It had its pectoral fins wrapped around me and was trying to hump me. Jim saw what was happening and saved me. I told him I thought it was him. Jim reckons the wobbegong was in mating mode!

Octopus with a torch

Jim Farrell told me to dive down 18 metres into a reef hole to get some crays. I used a torch as it was deep & dark. I stuck my head in the hole and two crays come flying out and hit me in the face. Then a big octopus sucked up my lantern and lit up like a Jack-o’- Lantern (carved pumpkin) at Halloween. I went around the back of the hole to reach in & grab back my torch and the occy wrapped its tentacles around my arm….we had a tug of war. I thought this might not end well for me, so I rubbed the occy’s tentacles against some sharp reef and sawed off two of its arms. The occy eventually spat out my torch and swam off with just 6 arms. The sawed off tentacles were still wrapped around my arm when I got back to the boat, so I took them home and ate them.

Randy Roo Rapes Rich

Back in 1990 I was at Banamah Wildlife Park in Dunsborough feeding a group of small roos with my wife Jos her mom Mandy. The roos were standing in a cluster around me and we were thinking how cute they were, when I was grabbed from behind by two strong arms and I felt something prodding my backside. I was startled as it hugged me tighter. I pulled out two paws that went through my jacket and two t- shirts & I ripped myself away. I turned around to face a big boomer who was sexually aroused with a large erection. The randy roo left bloody claw marks on my chest. Later the Park Ranger told me the boomer was in mating mode and I was a victim of its lecherous desire.

Mandy Farrell (Rich’s Mother in Law) – “I remember it like it was yesterday!”

Gorilla at Andy’s Store

Andy & Sally Jones ran Andy’s Store (Caves House Store) for 33 years until recently. Over the years they entertained visitors at the store with fake spiders, snakes & dog droppings, a fart machine and a giant Gorilla. They installed a chipmunk machine with a speaker in the gorilla, it played back pre-recorded messages and startled customers when they passed by.

Bevan & I did carpentry work at the store and joined in the fun.

While a customer was in the shop, I put the gorilla in his car on the front seat. The gorilla had sunnies on & a smoke in his mouth, one of his hands was on the gear stick & other was hanging out the window. The guy went ape-shit when he came out of the shop & saw the intruder.

Working at Andy’s was the best job I have ever had, I got paid for laughing all day!

Photos: 2016 Yalls Gorilla with Andy, Sally & Rich and sign from Andy’s Store. Photos Jim King.

2016 Yalls Gorilla Rich Myers & Andy 5 collage_photocat

SURF TRAVEL

I have made annual trips to the Hawaiian Islands since 1973 and still go on regular surf exploration trips. In the 70s I also surfed Portugal, Spain & France. In Hossegor (France) I met up with Malibu Beach legend Miki Dora. Miki wasn’t happy that other Californians had discovered waves in France!

Photo: 2000s Hawaii trip to Haleakala Volcano L-R Rich, Ry, Anne & Sinead. Rich Myer pic.

2000 Hawaii Myers family IMG_0009

I still get invites back to Punta San Carlos in Mexico as a guest. I always call in on Bucky the dog in the cemetery at Punta Abreojs.

I used to do life guarding/boatman duties at Namotua in Fiji. My son Reif has done it for the past few years.

I have been on surf trips to the Maldives with Andy Jones and George Simpson and the Mentawai’s with George Simpson and Luke Sutherland. Last year I went on a surf trip Sri Lanka with Anne.

Photos: Early 2000s Fiji Cloudbreak Rich Myers towed into last wave of the day by Kobi Abberton. Ben Kotke pics.

2000s Fiji Cloudbreak Rich Myers towed in by Kobi Abberton last wave of day DSC-1767

Bali Pirates

In 2008 I took my family on a holiday to Bali.

On a surf trip to Butik Peninsula with my family I raided an illegal Taiwanese fishing boat shipwrecked on the reef at Padang Padang. I salvaged some portholes from the vessel and was chased by pirates.

Javanese pirates had attacked the boat out to sea, killed the crew & scuttled the boat which washed up on the reef at Padang Padang. The shipwreck was cordoned off by Bali Police.

Unbeknown to me Pirates (1 leader & 6 underlings) were hiding in bushes on the cliff watching how I got on the boat and followed me (I was salvaging portholes & such). The Pirates snuck upon the ship & found me. They asked where’s is my boy” (they had seen my son Ry earlier). I passed them my screw driver and told them to hold this for a second”, then grabbed my bag with the portholes & tools and bolted. As they slid down the slippery deck, I scampered down the anchor rope onto the sharp coral in my tennis shoes, then jumped into the ocean and ran up to the beach where Anne & Ry were innocently beachcombing and yelled out RUN”. Anne said what have you done this time?We ran up the hill to our driver who had been watching the caper unfold and hurried away in his car.

I was excited & yelled I got the portholes”.

The portholes are now fitted in my man shed.

Images: 2008 Bali Padang Padang shipwreck. Images courtesy of Rich Myers.

Top: Bali newspaper report on shipwreck.

Bottom: Bali shipwreck. Rich can be seen in the cabin removing portholes. The anchor rope Rich used to escape from Pirates can also be seen leading down to the coral reef.

2008 Bali Padang Padang shipwreck Rich Myers collage_photocat

Photos: 2016 Portholes salvaged from Bali shipwreck installed in Rich’s Man Shed at Yallingup. Photos Jim King.

rich Myers portholes 5 collage_photocat

SW SURF PIONEER SCULPTURE

In 2011 SW sculptor Cerys Allerton used my body as a model for the surfer in the bronze sculpture commemorating the ‘birthplace of surfing in WA’ at Yallingup Beach. The head on the sculpture is not mine, it is fictitious. The surfboard was designed and shaped by Mark Ogram from Yahoo Surfboards.

Photos: Surf Pioneer Sculpture on unveiling day 2 December 2011. Photos Loz Smith

Top: (Left) Sculptor Cerys Allerton. (Right) Cerys & husband Ben Allerton with Kevin Merifield.

Bottom: (Left) Rich Myers & unidentified photographer. (Right) Rich & Cerys with Sculpture.

2011 Yalls Surf Pioneer collage_photocat

Photos: 2011 Surf Pioneer Sculpture plaques. Photos Loz Smith

2011 Yalls Surf Pioneer Placque collage_photocat

I just love surfing & the ocean. I have always tried to be the best I can be while having fun.

Photo: 2016 Rich, Anne & Loz Smith at Caves House Hotel Yallingup. Bruce King pic.

2016 Yalls Rich, Anne & Loz Caves House MAR19.2016 037

I have a positive attitude and believe a guardian angel is looking after me.

I feel kinda like the Forrest Gump of surfing, just a normal average bloke but ‘Shit Happens’.

My life has been a series of misadventures with good results…….and I’m not dead yet. Ha!

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1970-80s Surfing Reflections

Have you ever wondered what you would look like surfing in reverse stance?

This is a collection of Ric Chan surfing images showing some of our top surfers in the 70-80s. Ric’s normal images have been matched with a reversed image of the same wave.

Photo: 1974 Mick Black (natural foot) surfing Noiseys near Gracetown. Ric Chan pic

1974 Mick Black Noiseys Ric chan collage_photocat

Photo: 1974 Barry Day (natural foot) surfing Guillotine. Ric Chan pic

1974 Barry Day Guillotine Ric Chan collage_photocat

Photo: 1975 Steve Hannett (natural foot) surfing Injidup. Ric Chan pic

1975 Steve Hannet Injidup Ric Chan collage_photocat

Photo: 1976 Rob Conneely (natural foot) surfing Margaret River. Ric Chan pic

1976 Rob Conneely Marg River Ric Chan 1 collage_photocat

Photo: 1976 Ian Cairns (natural foot) surfing North Point. Ric Chan pic

1976 Ian Cairns North Point Ric Chan collage_photocat

Photo: 1976 Tony Hardy (goofy foot) surfing Margaret River. Ric Chan pic

1976 Tony Hardy Marg River Ric Chan 2 collage_photocat

Photo: 1978 Craig Bettenay (natural foot) surfing Trigg. Ric Chan pic.

1978 Craig Bettenay Triggs Ric Chan collage_photocat

Photo: 1980 Mike McAuliffe (goofy foot) surfing Scarborough. Ric Chan pic

1980 Mike McAuliffe Scarb Ric Chan collage_photocat

Photo: 1980 Chris Fullston (goofy foot) surfing Lefthanders near Gracetown. Ric Chan pic

1980 Chris Fullston Lefthanders Ric Chan collage_photocat