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Austria - A Surf Adventure In Landlocked Europe

Killvan's Austria. A tale of a surfers path that ended in the green hills and low cloud of Salzburg, Austria.

Europe was a long way from home. It was highly likely the opportunity to explore this part of the world may be a lost opportunity if not taken today, so we charged off towards the western European fringe, as close to Eastern Europe as we felt neccassary in those moments.

With the Bay Of Biscay sleeping, resting until the winter months pounded Hossegor with juicy swell, it was believed the drive around Austria would be good for us in the form of live history lessons and landlocked life experiences. Perhaps educate us on why we can sit and enjoy a schnitzel and some chocolate Bavarian for dessert while humming Mozart.

The EU and it's open borders removed some of the culture shock when driving from country to country as the passport was not so important as it was for other adventures, although the rigmarol of third world border jumps of the past were not missed. When we strolled into Austria and found ourselves deep in the Hohe Tauern a few days later, any excitement that entry lacked politically, mother nature easily made up for.

We began driving more slowly, stopping more frequently and at each bend in the road which was often lacing a valley between mountains we gawked in awe at the bold beauty of this new Austrian scene. Humble villages with the people going about routines in peace was impressive, absent of hustle bustle city living. The waves we could've been riding didn't seem to register at that time.

One afternoon a storm brewed thick and the mountain peaks were lost in heavy weather, nature had turned intense so we made for the town center. Suddenly a huge bolt of lightening zapped a roadside haystack. BLAM! It caught fire, a farmer ran from his barn with a tiny useless bucket, throwing little sprays of water in a futile attempt to save his hay. Under the grey cast skies the flames flickered and the farmers face was in contrast with the surrounds. Light drama on a surreal drive through some town in Austria. Time away from the ocean was softened by small moments like this, one of many, opening a gateway to travel outside of wave riding.

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