Before I get to day 3 of Sketch Tour Portugal, a little step back to a sketch done on day 2. This is warm up day at MEO Rip Curl Portugal , a huge competition that is part of the World Surf League. At SuperTubos beach in Peniche, I get a quick lesson on the physics of tubes and barrels (they’re two different types of waves) from @joaocatarino65. Only a few cameras on the beach but the big day will be different.
But we don’t head straight to Supertubos on the morning of day 3. Because first, we’re going to go see the amazing big waves of Nazaré. We didn’t see these waves at their highest, but even at half of their highest height, they were incredible. Want to see what they look like when they’re huge? Here’s a piece about the waves and how they work. I have never seen anything like it, and watching surfers in the waves was breathtaking and scary. And quite a spectacle as you can see in my sketch from all the people around me.
But there’s more to Nazaré than just big waves. This is an old fishing village. Tourism is it’s main industry now. Here are vendors in the traditional fisherfolk garb selling nuts in the town square.
Everywhere in Portugal are whitewashed buildings with yellow or blue trim and terra-cotta roof tiles. I could look at them forever and never tire of them. This is at Nazaré’s town square, where there’s so much to sketch.
But we can’t wait because we need to head back to the big day at Supertubos. And there are crowds here! I have to jostle between them to catch a view of the ocean. When Portuguese surfer Fredrico Morais aka Kikas sprinted across the beach for his heat the crowds went wild!
Up on the sand dunes behind me, more crowds, all having a super day.
The waves that day? They’re big, with a strong wind blowing from the shore (See all that surf blowing off the top of the crest?). Still, it’s incredible to me that these surfers ride inside that little ‘tube’ the wave makes when it curls up- and that they emerge from the tube just before it collapses on itself.
It turns out to be a great day for Portugal. In this sketch, on the left is a dejected looking Owen Wright from Australia. He didn’t make it to the next round. But in the limelight is Vasco Ribeiro, Portugal’s wildcard, who is all smiles after a great day riding the waves.
And that wraps up a pretty exhilarating day at the beach. Day 3 is all done!