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Sumbawa conquered!    

October 2008


Hello friends,

It was that time of year for my annual kitesurfing getaway to Lakey Sumbawa. This year I decided to bring along my SUP.

At the airport few eyebrows were raised when surfers and kiters alike noticed my huge board bag. Fortunately, I had a 9 footer and there were no problems with the Airline.

Merpati Nusantara Airlines known as Merpati is quite fair as they charged 10.000 rupiah per kilo (around 1 US$ at current exchange rate) so the excess for the SUP was only 15 US$....

During the months of September and October, Lakey is famous for the strong winds that usually start around 10 am which lasts till sun down. Early morning glassy conditions prevail.

When we got there, the swell produced overhead conditions which caused me to head to Nungas. A long uncrowded left hander with a deep channel to bail out into in case of trouble.



This spot is magic for SUPS, the wave is very long with few sections, and I was only surfing the last two for a ride of about 100 meters. I’m pretty sure that a better rider could take off a lot deeper and be able to make the sections all the way to the end of the wave. That would make a super long ride.

After three days, the swell dropped off and I decided to try my luck at Pipe which is named because it resembles Pipeline in Hawaii. It is a hollow wave which breaks on shallow reef. I was a little concerned in the beginning but the waves were only about head high so I gave it a go.



Wow what a radical take off…. You see the wave approaching and the water rushing up off the reef that looks shallower and shallower in the crystal clear water of Lakey. Then you get on the wave and everything just happens in a rush, super scary drop and a very fast ride to the close channel… This is the right wave for getting barrelled if you dare but all too soon, the short ride is over. Not too many surfer here too if the waves are not too big.

I then decided to paddle to the famous Lakey Peak but there were way too many surfers in the line up, more then 20 and everyone giving me nasty looks!!



I was just able to sneak in couple of shoulders before I decided to give up.  Wave looks scary but actually is quite easy so I promised myself to give it another go some time soon.

The next morning I woke up at 5am and paddled out to the Peak in the dark. I could see few surfers getting ready to go but I was the first one to arrive. Sweet I had a few waves to myself while the sun was coming up over the hills.

The Peak is an amazing wave, powerful even at shoulder height. It is a mechanical wave which is easy to line up. All you need is a few strokes of the paddle and you’re on it.

With the swell as it was, the left seemed better to me than the right and it does tube nicely. The ride is about 50 meters long and there is a big channel to get out again.

By sunrise there were twelve surfers out to enjoy the sunrise glass of Lakey Peak. As I was the first out and the only SUPPER there, they adopted me and allowed me to catch some more waves. I was also calling them into waves as I could see the sets approach from my vantage point. Some even congratulated me on my riding skills.

To me, my trip was a total success. SUPing glass in the mornings and kitesurfing as soon as the wind kicked in. I even got covered up on a small barreling left at the Peak.

 I was hoping to be the first one to SUP in Lakey but I heard that Robby Naish was there in August and got to ride for few days at the Pipe. I am still first out at Nungas and the Peak…..


Lakey Peak is a great place to visit and with the option to Stand Up Paddle Surfing, I saw action everyday. I felt a bit lonely but I’m sure that by next year there will be more brothers in the water….. Rachel the French man who owns the Lakey Beach Inn (great food) as already asked me for a board and lessons when he next visits Bali.

That’s it for now, till the next trip.

Bye Jankie


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2012 UPDATE.. Since the time I wrote this piece I have been back to Lakey every year and always took with me my SUP board. NO trip there would be complete with out it.......


My favorite spot remain Nungas, rarely there are surfers and even if they are there they pretty much stay only in one spot leaving few sections free for us on SUP. I went back to the Peak and Pipe few times but they are always too crowded. One time I paddle out in the dark and had time to catch couple of waves before the hordes join me in the line up.

But I pretty much only SUP at Nungas as you can also ride at all tides including dead low!

I quite progress since my first visit and so my equipment. With the latest boards is quite possible to take off very deep on the reef and make all the section. A fast board is essential and my Jimmy Lewis Stun Gun works unbelievably well in those conditions.



Last 2 years Merpati and Lion are using smaller planes so is not possible to take boards there by fly. I had to send my board in advance by land....


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