Whether your local break is just down the road or you’re making the trip to Majon beach this summer, Surf North Korea has picked out 12 essential items to stash in your bag for the next time you’re hitting the coast. We collected top tips from our coach, Nik Zanella, and the rest of the SNK team to find out which kit (aside from the usual board, wax, wetsuit and leash) makes the life of a surf traveller easier:
That strange downtempo track from the ‘90s was right – wear sunscreen. When you’re surfing, you’re exposed to the elements. Sun, sea and wind can all prematurely age the skin and worse. Invest in a decent waterproof sunblock for your face which has been formulated for surfers. Popular brands might claim to be waterproof but they just don’t cut it compared to a proper zinc oxide stick. You might look like a geisha but your face will thank you for it in the long run.
Doubly functional, this one; protects eyes from UV rays and you will look oh-so cool!
Reusable water bottle
The DPRK’s beaches are some of the cleanest in the world and the locals take great pride in keeping them pristine. Stay hydrated and don’t be a litterbug by using a reusable water bottle.
Wetsuit rash can be a nightmare. It occurs when the seawater in your wetsuit dries out leaving a million salty little daggers which rub any sensitive body areas which are in movement when you’re surfing. This writer once suffered a particularly bad outbreak in the groin area, leaving them hobbling for nearly a week. Don’t let that happen to you! Bring a small tub of vaseline and apply to any areas which are getting raw. This creates a protective layer between the irritated skin and the wetsuit.
It’s impossible to be unhappy in a poncho! They are more functional than a beach towel and make changing in and out of your wetsuit at the beach or car park a breeze, plus, they keep the wind-chill off on colder days.FCS Key
Always essential – often forgotten. This little guy can make or break a day at the beach.
Every once in a while, you’re going to take a huge wave on the head and it will feel like you’ve swallowed half the ocean in one foul gulp. Mints (Altoids, Lifesavers etc.) can quickly eliminate that deathly, salty mouthfeel in seconds. Trust me, it works and you’ll be ready to charge down the next set with in no time!
First-aid kits are important for any surf traveller. Our ISA certified coaches always have a kit on hand. But small, non-life threatening nicks and cuts can be a nuisance when in constant contact with saltwater. Keep them dry and give them a chance to heal up with some waterproof plasters.
Multi-tool / Swiss-army penknife
Channel your inner boy-scout and be prepared for anything with a multi-tool.
Surf North Korea apparel
It’s a shameless plug, but we want you to look your very best. You can do that by wearing one of our officially branded and lovingly designed Surf North Korea t-shirts, hoodies or tops. Get one exclusively here.