Zigzag Issue 45.1 - Summer 20/21

Zigzag is one of South Africa's oldest niche titles, and the third longest running surf magazine in the world. For more than four decades we've been delivering surf journalism of the highest quality, stunning surf imagery and world class magazine production values.

South Africa
Jingo Media
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4 Números

en este número

4 min.
true grit

In a 1972 issue of International Surfing Magazine, a feature about the state of surfing in South Africa focussed much of its attention on two young cousins from Durban, Shaun and Michael Tomson. Shaun, the article asserted, was probably the better surfer of the pair, his performances technical, precise and calculated. Michael, on the other hand, was something special – especially in the realm of riding the tube, which in that particular era was still pretty much a ‘set your line and hope for the best’ affair. In florid terms, Michael is depicted riding a no-hope, sand-bottom barrel at Durban’s Bay of Plenty; not bulling through section after section, but feeling his way across the sandbar in an extrasensory display of reactive self-expression, an instrument of the wave’s will and…

5 min.
renaissance woman

First memory of being in the water? I was six years old and my dad pushed me onto my very first wave at Tofo, in Mozambique. I was riding his 9’0 pink Natural Curve longboard – we still have that board! I fell in love with surfing and have been in the ocean from that day on. Biggest influence? My dad, Grant Gilmour. He’s a longboard champ and seeing how much he loved surfing and being in the water with his mates made me want to follow in his footsteps. I’m pretty competitive by nature and I just wanted to get better since he first started pushing me into little insiders during our family holidays in Mozambique. But my dad didn’t want me to compete at such a young age and insisted I…

3 min.
crab island

Kakuni means 'crab' in Maldivian. We named this wave after the infestation of crabs on the island off which it breaks. The whole island floor seemed to undulate with the critters, to the point that they’d climb up your legs if you stood still for too long. But I’m getting ahead of myself. First there’s the bizarre story of what happened when we found this wave. It was the early 2000s and John Callahan, my mentor, had organised a trip to the northernmost atolls of the Maldivian archipelago in search of new waves. John is the consummate professional and wrote the book on producing global surf trips in the pre-digital age, when print was everything. As was his formula, he invited surfers from almost every major surf nation at the time to…

15 min.
end days

AS IT TURNS OUT, THIS VIRUS WASN’T JUST DEADLY TO HUMAN BEINGS – IT WAS DEADLY TO PROFESSIONAL SURFING. Back in April, the world was a simpler place. We only had to deal with a pandemic and a few corona cops – not the breakdown of social order, the upending of world geopolitics, and the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression. Since the lockdown’s been lifted, however, at least we’ve had surfing. With many liberated from employment or school and free to hit the beach, surfers around the world have been able to paddle out at their local break and wash it off. As the world went mad, the people went surfing. It was a splendid, simple spell, with the experience rendered down to its elemental parts – surf, surfer, surfboard.…

9 min.
conquistadors of the useless

3 QUESTIONS 1 DO YOU WANT TO SURF THE BEST WAVES OF YOUR LIFE? 2 CAN YOU KEEP A SECRET? 3 ARE YOU ABLE TO MEET ME AT THE AIRPORT AT 6AM TOMORROW? What would you do if the same questions were pinged to you by a famous surf photographer on a Monday morning at 5am, precipitating a sea change in your quiet life? The answers were all yes, of course, although the overspill into other lives was significant. Bailed on my girlfriend mid-house renovation; bailed on my job; bailed on the plethora of neatly packaged responsibilities that you only realise you have when you turn your back on them. Instead, I suddenly found myself stuffing possessions into a board-bag, while trotting out lies to the most important people in my life down my cell phone. “Where?…

14 min.
head on the james lowe story

I wiggled my toes, then moved my legs. Next, I swung my arms, checking for injuries that my adrenalin might have masked. Miraculously, I was okay. I was alive and I wasn't hurt. Thank you Lord, I thought, thank you! Moments earlier, I’d been cruising on the open road just outside of Upington, en route to the Kalahari. A distant lightning storm in the rear-view mirror provided the only light at around 5am on the narrow rural road. I was passing an oncoming car when out of nowhere, another car swung out from behind it, its headlights beaming straight at me. You think that when your time comes, you might have a few moments to process what’s about to happen but in this case, I would never have had the chance. With no time…