Back in action in Pozo 2022
July 26, 2022
Fiji Surf Pro
June 15, 2023
Back in action in Pozo 2022
July 26, 2022
Fiji Surf Pro
June 15, 2023

After a couple of months of flatwater in Aruba it was time for some wave sailing.
This time Oda convinced me to travel to one of the longest waves in the world, in Peru!
It was only a 6-hour trip to Lima. I can’t believe I never really looked into that.
Our friend Carolina picked us up and gave us a little tour there. The coast has waves as far as the eye can see! After a quick surfing session, we we’re off to the bus station where we tried to load our 7 board bags of windsurfing, kiting, winging and surf foil gear.

Oda and Carolina next to an SUV stacked with windsurfing gear.

We don’t do travelling light!

Of course, that was never going to fit and even though time was ticking everyone was still relaxed and friendly. We managed to get half of our gear on and hoped for the best for the rest of our gear. In South America you just need to let go and trust a bit I think.
We were just in time. The bus started moving as soon as we got on!
I settled into my seat and prepared for the 13-hour ride to Pacasmayo.
For a shorter trip: There’s also a flight from Lima to Trujillo which would be considerably shorter!

In Pacasmayo, we loaded our gear on the cool “tuk-tuk’s” which I would associate with Asia but seems to be THE way of transportation there.
We drove to El Faro hotel located right in front of the spot. There wasn’t a big swell, but we already saw line after line coming in.
Surprisingly we were surrounded by mostly kiters and there were only a few windsurfers there.

Surf foiling
The first few days were light, so we hired a boat to pull us into some waves to surf foil.
Oda is absolutely obsessed about it and her pump foil practice payed off as she could ride one wave, and then pump to the next one and the next one and the next one. That was really inspiring to see, and the locals were quite impressed too!
I need more practice to pump to the next waves over and over, but having said that, riding the same wave for 1,5 minute is already exhilarating!
This was the perfect practice because eventually we travelled 1 hr South to Chicama where the wave was even longer. I was going down way bigger swell than in Pacasmayo and was loving it. It’s so peaceful on the surf foil. I’m glad Oda gets me out there on the foil so I can experience something completely new!

Surffoiling in Chicama

After my first windsurf session, I had to go to the hospital to get my foot stitched, I kicked my extension during the session and noticed I was bleeding a lot from the top of my foot.
At the hospital it was a little party. The doctor put on some reggaeton music, asked a bunch of question about where I’m from and why I travelled to Peru AND he was making fun of me being a bit squeamish about getting three small stitches haha.

I thought I’d be out of the water, but luckily Oda was there and a fun fact about her is that she will always find a way to get on the water. My stitches were no excuse either. She taped my foot with a waterproof plaster and then magically pulled out a neoprene boot from her board bag. It worked! All my windsurfing sessions were very memorable, it was the first time in a while I was doing some down the line wave riding and I really sailed my heart out on the bigger days. I felt that adrenaline rush speeding down the wave. I even had to escape a couple of times as the wave would hit a sandbank at some point, jack up and close out. The excitement!

sarah quita bottom turning in pacasmayo, the water is brown and her sail is yellow and a pink and blue board

Kiting was incredible!
The legendary Mitu Monteiru was having his camp there and it was awesome to get some tips from the Strapless kite guru himself!
Since I’m regular stance I’d have to ride the wave back side, but because of windsurfing I decided I was going to ride frontside which felt pretty goofy (pun intended!).
UGH it’s annoying to not feel as much control as normal, and I really had to think about what my legs were supposed to do, but gradually I got the hang of it and my turns and hits were becoming more and more fun!
It was INSANE to go down such big wave on just my kiteboard.
I feel like a whole new world opened up in those sessions and I’m dying to do more of it.

SQ top turn

We spent 3 weeks in Pacasmayo including a short trip to Chicama where we used all of our toys in the waves every day! On the smaller days the wave is a bit soft which is perfect to practice surf foiling. But on bigger days it’s more powerful and gets very exciting for windsurfing and kiting. I’ve had my fair share of Ceviche, brushed up on my Spanish and was in awe of the sunsets every evening. It was fun to get to know some more kite surfers and randomly meet windsurf friends from abroad. Now that I’ve been to Peru, I wonder if my South American Era has arrived, and I’ll be chasing more South American waves soon!

Peru travel tips:
To get to Pacasmayo you need to fly to Lima and then either take a 13 hour bus ride to there or you take a 2-hour flight to Trujillo and a 1 hour taxi ride after.

Conditions & Season:
There is a LOT of current. So much even, that there is a special boat service that will drive you back up to the peak when you go for a surf session.
For windsurfing it means you need to rig big!
Usually there is no wind in the morning so everyone will go surfing before breakfast, and then around 11 the wind picks up till about 3-4 and the last hour will be best for surfing again.
We were there in May which should be the start of the windy season.
Overall, it was quite light and it was mostly float and ride.
I never sailed smaller than my 5,0 and 88L.
I used my 10m and 12m for kiting.
It should be windier around July-August

Remember that it’s the Southern hemisphere! So in May they’re actually headed into their winter. While you can still walk around in shorts and t-shirts you should consider taking a sweater with you. The water was colder than expected, so towards the end of the day I was happier in my 3/2 wetsuit especially for surfing sessions.

For windsurfing where I was dry most of the time I was fine in my 2/2 long Jane.
Most riders were out in short leg long arm wetsuit

Ceviche is good EVERYWHERE you go.
And they have a love for corn. It’s great.
Pisco Sour’s are dangerous…. and tasty!
Be careful with the tap water, you might even want to brush your teeth with bottled water if you’re very sensitive. I was ill one night from one restaurant but was all good after a horrendous night.

Unfortunately I did none of it!
There were waves for days and not enough time!
I will have to travel back, stay longer, do it all and then update this section 