When The Endless Summer was released in 1966, it highlighted the seemingly endless left-hand break at Manu Bay and landed Raglan on surfing maps around the world.
Over the years Raglan has experienced visitors amass–some only come in during the swell while others who have come in for a few days are still around five (or twenty-five) years later.
Surfing is embedded into the heart of Raglan and plays a vital role in the wellbeing of our community. Whether you are a sea-salted veteran or fresh starting grommet, there is no denying the excitement and adrenaline rush you feel when you get to your feet for the first time.
There is a passion that flows within the water–a magic we have all felt. It is what keeps us near to our Raglan by the Sea, the place we all call home. On certain nights, the call of the Sea is so powerful you can hear it on inland farms, and smell the ocean fresh air once you enter the township.
Surfing has had a big influence in the way our community interacts with the water, it inspires us to pay attention. This passion has become one of the not-so-silent motivators that drives us to protect our waters through sustainable practices.
Raglan Surf Co teamed up with the Raglan Chronicle to dive deeper into this part of our culture that has helped to shape what Raglan has become. We hope to shine a light on the past, present and future of surfing in Raglan, to give voice to the not so talked of topics, to celebrate the unsung heroes of the lifestyle in town, as well as the various efforts being headed by locals within our community who are striving to keep our waters healthy and safe.
Whether you are an avid surfer, or you prefer to sit on the beach and watch, we are all affected by the ebb and flow of the tides. Our interactions with the water, directly or indirectly, have a ripple effect on the vitality of our community that reaches far beyond the divvy.
Originally published on 15 November 2015 in the Raglan Chronicle
Photo of Manu Bay early 1960's by Butch Walters