A couple of surf-loving lovebirds from NorCal get far off the grid of technology to find stoke, beauty and new wave challenges in a peaceful paradise...
All surfing by Tessa Timmons, photography below by Kyle Buthman buthmanmedia.com
You recently had a magical surf adventure on the other side of the world, hey? So share a little bit about where you went, how long, what the trip entailed:
Yeah just got back from a month in Indonesia! It was insane, we scored a swell pretty much every week. We went from Bali up to Sumatra and then back to Bali seeing some pretty incredible places.
How was this experience different than other places which you've traveled??
Indo is rad, especially Bali because there is something magical about it that you can't put into words. It was also the most challenging trip surf-wise for me, every session was a humbling one for sure. I didn’t bring a single longboard but rather two small single fins so I was out of my comfort zone.
What was the highlight of the trip?
Surfing in Nias was pretty insane.
When you take a surf trip, what type of gear do you pack? Clothing? Do you plan/pack in advance for what you're going to wear when you're not surfing and what type of style, clothing do you bring with you?
It depends on where I’m going. I always try to pack as light as possible, knowing that I will not be too concerned what I’m wearing outside of the water on surf trips. When I go to tropical places I bring alot of dresses for when I’m out of the water; I also love to find local clothing which is usually very suiting for the climate we are in. In Indo I got SO MANY dresses for super cheap, so that's always nice when you can do some wardrobe shopping on surf trips.
Most def! WHY do you surf, Tessa?? HOW did you get into surfing??
I surf because it keeps me sane and I love that it is constantly changing, not much of a chance to get bored. I got into surfing because of one of my brothers surfed and he would take me out a lot and I got hooked.
Do you have any heroes, personal inspiration to attribute your surfing passions?
A lot of my good friends growing up are great surfers and definitely inspired me to get better and better. Kassia Meador was a huge inspiration to my surfing as well.
So you're a Santa Cruz ladyslider. Tell those who reside outside NorCal a little bit more about what that means, the lifestyle is like to be a 831 local?
It's cold water but very rewarding surf-wise.
No argument there. So are you cool with rocking the marshmallow 4/3 suits or does that give you anxiety to dress up like the Michelin tire dude each time you paddle out in cold water??
Yeah, you just get used to wearing a wetsuit when you are surfing everyday. Also, wetsuit technology and styles have come a long way. There are some really cute women's suits out there right now.
Indeed. Do you surf with other women in NorCal, or are you mostly among the guys?? What is that like (whatever the case?)
I have quite a few lady friends I surf with in town mostly. But when I go up the coast the girl to guy ratio gets pretty low.
Do you feel like you generally have a good deal of support, comradery from both guys AND gals out in the water when you surf? Care to elaborate?
It really depends. I think being a girl in the water you are definitely treated a little different but it also comes down to the individual. If you are respectful when surfing and can hold your own you should be getting respect from both sexes.
Do you have any advice for new women who would like to get into surfing?
It's not something that you can pick up overnight; it takes a lot of hours being in the water and learning how the ocean works. It is also one of the most rewarding lifestyles to take up.
REEF recently released their annual "REEF GIRL" calendar, and it was photographed by another woman for the first time. How do you feel about this situation, industry marketing project in general—as a fellow woman surfer?? Do you feel any sexism or gender slants in the industry, in general surfing lifestyle, culture??
Oh for sure, you see sexism everywhere in surf marketing; however it is definitely getting better.
What would you like to see more and/or less of, in social media and/or advertising/marketing in general??
Butt shots in women's surfing ads.
You're also keen on fashion, vintage clothing! Do you have any wardrobe staples which you wear constantly, just can't live without??
Ah so many! A good hat and pair of boots to polish any simpler outfit!
Favorite item of vintage clothing in your closet and how did make it into your wardrobe?
A red velvet fur trimmed coat I got at the bargain barn in Santa Cruz for like $3.
That's amazing! Let's pretend you have an envelope with $20,000 dropped in your mailbox with an anonymous letter telling you that it's yours to spend however you'd like—but you must spend it wisely and towards achieving whatever would make your life better...how would you spend it?
Tuition for culinary school, and investment money for a little breakfast cafe.
Last Q: bikinis or one-pieces and skinny jeans or flares??
One pieces can be pretty sexy and skinny jeans.
Nothing like a solid one-piece suit there. THANK YOU so much Tessa! xx
To keep up with more of Tessa's sliding style and NorCal adventures, check her out on Insta at: @Tessistess