Groundswell: Part 2

Groundswell: Part 2

Raincoast Conservation Foundation

Last week's showing of Groundswell went extremely well for Patagonia, Woodshed Films, and Raincoast Conservation Foundation. They completely filled the seats at the venue in the Eco Trust Building, with plenty of people standing in the back and sitting on the floor in the front.

All of those people for a short 20 minute film. But really, there was so much more to the evening than that. In addition to the film, band, and free beer and pizza (for donations to Raincoast), there was a very informative 15 minute intro from a research scientist who has been studying the Great Bear Rainforest and a question and answer after the film with both the scientist and Chris Malloy.

They talked with the curious and engaged crowd about the beauty, harshness, diversity, and frailty of the unique stretch of coast north of Vancouver Island. It's a place with grizzly bears, black bears, the spirit bear (a white black bear that only lives in this area, with only about 200 of them total), wolves, cougars, humpback whales, orcas, eagles, and I forget how many feet of rain per year, but a lot more than Portland gets. They also talked of the native Haisla Nation and their passion to protect the land where their ancestors have lived for many thousands of years.

Protect it from what? From a massive oil pipeline running over the Rocky Mountains from Alberta. The oil would be pumped to the coast and huge oil tankers would try to navigate through uncharted, super narrow fjords and channels to load up the oil before taking it to Asia. The coast where these tankers would be loading this oil is one of the most dangerous coastlines in the world for ships. It seems very likely that an accident would happen, and it would be devastating to all of the wildlife, plants, first nations people, and the land itself. There's a lot more to the issue than that, but that's a general summary, at least. Raincoast and the First Nations people are willing to fight hard to make sure that this pipeline isn't built. Woodshed films did an amazing job at spreading the word about the issues in a fun way.

The movie was not just a surf movie. It was more of a conservation movie with a little surfing, but it was better because of that. It was a refreshing change to see a surf related movie with more of a purpose than just getting people inspired to surf, to tell the story of surf culture, or to show how good a certain surfer or group of surfer's are. Groundswell can really make a lasting impact.

If you couldn't make it out to see it, I still recommend checking out their site at, and their Facebook page at

Latest Articles

Visit the blog
Welcome to the team Justin Buford! Justin has been a part of the shop since we opened in 2010. He was a true local grom who would spend his days skateboarding in our parking lot and washing rental wetsuits when he wasn’t in school. His family lived just up the street and his step-dad is one of the best surfers in town. His brother-in-law comes from the legendary South County Surf family the Ledbetters. Surfing is who and what Justin is, it’s in his blood. 
It felt a lot like home, Ireland. I suppose in a bizarre way it is, as my ancestors planted their roots in county Sligo on the North West coast of the country in the early 1700's after immigrating from Scotland. Ireland has been at the top of my travel list since long before I found out there was surf there. I formed images in my head of what the landscape would look like from seeing pictures, videos and hearing stories of infamous rocky basalt point breaks and shallow heaving slabs. Every image I had crafted fell short in comparison to seeing it all in person for the first time.
Houdini was the ultimate escape artist of his time, and it’s pretty obvious that this was the reasoning behind the naming of the Firewire Houdini; a board built with large, powerful barrels in mind, as well as the act of disappearing into those barrels and then escaping while still standing. So will the Firewire Houdini have you escaping the best barrels of your life, or will you suffer the same fate as the namesake with a fatal punch in the gut when you paddle out into some bombing lineup?
“You’ve got to pay to play” or something along those lines, is what we tell ourselves whenever a board is broken during a session. When you get comfortable enough in waves that require a step-up board like Lost’s Sabo-Taj model, the likelihood of snapping it is pretty high. Extra glassing offered from many shapers can help, but it still takes just one bad wipeout or mistimed positioning to kiss your favorite PU board goodbye. So when Lib-Tech took its “dang difficult to ding” technology and combined it with Lost Surfboard’s slab hunting Sabo-Taj, could a board be born that finally holds up to heavy conditions? Let’s find out….