Updated: Jul 14, 2022
My aim is to review boards for the average knockabout surfer (or ‘kook’ like me), without all the technical terms and manoeuvres.
Mid Length surfboards have become popular over the last couple of years. With new surfers taking to the water, and competition for waves increasing. It seems like a no brainer on those more crowded days to opt for a more foam approach.
The Critical Slide Society have created a moderate volume board to help get into the waves early in these situations. Let me introduce you to the ‘Hermit’ which is the most versatile board in their collection.
Out of the three of the boards in the quiver I wasn’t quite sure what kind of ride I would be getting when it came to The Hermit. I knew it was going to be a very versatile board because of the shape and perfect for beginner surfers but I wasn’t sure if I would get my froth on like I had with the Logger head and the Antler.
Out of all the TCSS board’s the Hermit was the one that shocked me the most! This quickly became my primary go-to board in the TCSS range if I wanted to surf every day and only had room in the car for one board.
Critical Slide is all about the simple joy of surfing. They design boards that are not going to win a world title, They are designed to get every last drop off fun out of wave. Exactly the same reason I surf. I can’t do any of the manoeuvres that the guys at my local board riders can do but I can appreciate the feeling of frothing a fun wave just as much.
The Hermit comes with a Generic 7inch single fin which I 100 percent took advantage off! Having the option of side bites was another added bonus. Knowing the advantages I get with my own personal surfing, I purchased a set from Free Fall and put them in. If you are strapped for cash, I wouldn’t worry too much, the single fin should be enough, but to unlock the full potential of this board I would definitely be keeping it in mind.
I grabbed a 7’0 at 51L In the Straw colour, which is the smallest size available. This was more than enough foam for me. I weigh 85kg at 6ft tall and surf 3-4 times a week. If you are a beginner, there are bigger options which would help shorten the learning curve.
The Hermit does it all! It turns and engages the rail beautifully and is actually super responsive considering the size of the board. I could move my feet around and do small little cross steps when needed to generate more speed in those dead spots that appeared on the wave. It is also a board that gives the ridder plenty of time to make those small minute adjustments if required.
I have had a lot of fun surfs on The Hermit but one day that really stands out was when I was surfing my favourite reef break. There was some nice 2-3 feet waves rolling in but there was a massive cross wind blowing. It was a constant battle to keep holding the right spot. If I was on my High performance short board I would have spent most the surf paddling against the wind but the hermit made it easy to beat the wind and pick off some waves. It really make a surf that would have been a struggle so much fun and enjoyable.
The Hermit is $995 and includes a free fin. This is a great price considering you probably won’t need to buy any other boards as you will have most conditions covered. Click here to buy one today or reach out if you have any questions.
To learn more about the amazing company Global Surf Industries , Click here to listen to the podcast episode I recorded with the CEO Mark Kelly.
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