Robby Swift left Maui to head down to Chile in December and the trip definitely paid off, as 3 days after he left Maui the wind died.

Robby Swift: “Every year in December I head down to Chile to get away from the crowds and enjoy some epic sailing. This year was one of the windiest Decembers I can remember, I used my 4.2 or 4.5 most days, only pulling the 5.0 out of the bag for one evening wave riding session. The place is so beautiful and the conditions are so fun that I miss it already and can’t wait to go back again in March!”

Robby Swift with radical wave windsurfing action from the Pacific in 2016

Camera: Lilian Arratia
Drone: David Swift (brother of Robby)
Edit: Robby Swift

Interview with Robby Swift about his Chile trip in December 2016

Continentseven: How long were you in Chile?
Robby Swift: This year only for 5 weeks. I wish it would have been longer!!

Continentseven: Is it always a good to be in Chile during Decemb3r?
Robby Swift: I come here every year, normally for 6 weeks to 2 months and I always have an amazing time. There might be a couple of days here and there where you can’t sail or surf but I always feel like I need the days off to rest between the amazing sessions 😉

Continentseven:Did you get a few rest days without wind, too?
Robby Swift: Yes, as above, we surf a lot and windsurf a lot but there are a few days when you can’t do anything and we just end up resting on those days, although there is amazing mountain biking, a nice tennis court, horse riding etc to do if you have the energy.

Continentseven: Was it the perfect trip at the perfect time of the year? The wind in Maui was pretty much down after the Aloha Classic.
Robby Swift: Yes, I think we timed it as well as we could. I booked the tickets 6 months ago so it was pure luck but literally 3 days after I left Maui the wind died and it started raining for about a month and in chile I had 2-3 good days then a couple of days resting, then amazing surf, then sailing then rest then surf etc. It was really an amazing trip!

Exciting moon rise over Chile's Pacific Ocean

Exciting moon rise over Chile’s Pacific Ocean

Continentseven: What gear did you use most of the days and at which spots did you sail?
Robby Swift: I used 4.2m and 4.5m mostly. Normally I use bigger sails, but it was really windy this year. I never used bigger than 4.5m actually. And I wished I had a 4.0m on quite a few days. We sailed Pupuya, Matanzas, Roca Quadrada and Topocalma. They are the closest slots to my house and it was so good, we didn’t feel like driving further away!

Continentseven: How does a day of Robby Swift look like in Chile?
Robby Swift: Well the last 2 days were pretty exceptional. We woke up at 6, surfed from 7 till 11:30, wanted to go sailing after that but the wind never really came up and we ended up surfing again from 6-9:30pm. I am definitely ready for a rest now!! Normally if there is a forecast for wind we try to sail around 12/1pm for a couple of hours and then again in the late evening. If there are waves to surf but ok wind, we surf early (trying to time it with low tide) and then again late in the evening to get the classiest conditions. 

Continentseven: You travelled with your family and Brawzinho to Chile. Is it more motivating to have a world class rider like Braw next to you in the water?
Robby Swift: Yes it’s nice to have braw there. When I sail alone I feel good about my sailing most days but when he is there, it really pushes me to sail harder and try more things. We try to video every day and watch our technique on the computer after so we really learn a lot. 

Continentseven: Did you improve a few moves or land any of them for the first time?
Robby Swift: I think I improved a little on everything. Definitely started doing higher doubles, 1h1f Back Loops a bit better, I felt like my wave riding improved a fair bit too, it’s hard to really say as I watched our 2014 and 2015 videos and we were sailing OK then, but I feel like I was learning to finish off my turns a bit more and to do more tricks on the wave. Anyway I definitely had a lot of fun which is the most important part.

Robby Swift again improved his wave riding skills in Chile in fall 2016.

Robby Swift again improved his wave riding skills in Chile in fall 2016.

Continentseven: Chile has a strong wave sailing scene. Did you spend time on the water with the locals, too?
Robby Swift: Yes, we have lots of local friends and some of them are very good. There are a few guys there who would give all of us a run for our money on the PWA if we had an event down there! Everyone is so friendly and sharing with their knowledge of spots that it’s really refreshing. It’s a very nice group of people to share your sessions with!

Continentseven: You are nominated for the Storm Chase. Do you feel ready for the high wind event and what would would it mean to be selected for the second time in a row?
Robby Swift: I would love to be selected. I had a good experience the first time and did one of the most radical moves of my life in Ireland, but unfortunately broke my foot (wave sailing in Chile) in the middle of the waiting period during winter 2012/2013.  So I couldn’t take part in Tasmania or Cornwall. I hope I get another chance this time as I really enjoyed the first one. I’ve been practicing wearing my hood and booties too 🙂 maybe you can see it in the video haha. 

Continentseven: Would you have the high-wind quiver ready or would you need to order a few small sailsizes and tiny boards, too.
Robby Swift: I have the 75 and 83 Radical thruster quads ready and I have 3.4m upwards in the combats so I think I’ll be ready. I think I’ll order a 3.0 custom sail just in case though haha. Thanks for reminding me!!

© 2016