Matt Cruden is the skipper of the HMV Mangalui and has been trawling Sumatran waters since ’93. He arrived before the crowds and knows the waters like a stripper knows a pole. He’s seen years of perfect waves go unridden and the terrors of earthquakes and tsunamis. We interviewed him for our next issue, but there was a bit to much info for the page so we’ve put the rest here.
Is there one session that stands out as being particularly memorable?
Probably some of the best waves I’ve had ever would have been at Bluetubes/Hole/McFrights – whatever you want to call it – there were days (pre-earthquake) where you would take off and pull into a really tight, high barrel, it would bend a bit so you couldn’t see the exit, then it would grow into this amazing huge turquoise blue barrel where you could actually exit standing up. From the inside, it was definitely one of the prettiest views in the islands.
Can you describe the Ments/Telos/Nias when your boat charters were in their infancy?
“The thing I remember the most was the first experiences of scoring some of the more fickle and perfect waves like Rifles and Bluetubes with the Lennox boys as well as Telescopes with the Wamberal (Central Coast NSW) boys. Other things I really remember is literally surfing Maccas for about four days a week with no other boats around and getting barreled off ya nut. One of the biggest buzzes from doing this is watching the incredible stoke on the face of everyday average surfers when they got the barrel of their life.”
Matt – searching.
Tell us about one discovery you made?
“It’s pretty hard to pinpoint one particular one. I still remember the first ever trip I did like it was yesterday. I sailed Katika into Mentawai’s from Java (way south) and didn’t really score much until we got to Thunders. Just seeing Thunders on a perfect five-foot sunny day and then Maccas for the first time was insane. In those days, nobody really told anyone else about anything. I guess that’s why there are a few names for most of the breaks around. Even our GPS had a cover on it, I often caught guests writing down co-ordinates and stuff.”
What was the loosest charter you’ve taken out?
“There’s been a few and I couldn’t really go into detail without incriminating someone.”
Pick up the next issue of Waves (on sale Wednesday) to read the rest of the interview.
Matt also owns the Latitude Zero resort in the Telo Islands. If you wanna book the Mangalui or the Latitude Zero resort, visit resortlatitudezero.com