Beef, barra AND barrels? Surf Lakes creates Australia’s first wave pool in Yeppoon
Rockhampton is known as the beef capital of Queensland (and the barra fishing is amazing, too). But surf? Wellll… Now it boasts Australia’s first full-scale artificial wave pool and it’s like nothing you’ve ever seen before. Surf Lakes just dropped its teaser clip of the demo site and a bunch of happy as Larry pro surfers taking to the waves in Yeppoon.
The south-east corner of Queensland is blessed with waves, however, apart from the intrepid hardcore surfers who explore the Great Barrier Reef for waves, it’s generally accepted the waves start to run out as you head north from the Sunshine Coast. Agnes Waters just south of Gladstone can boast waves on bigger swells but now Surf Lakes has changed all that.
Bountiful waves for beginners to pro
The unique design of the Surf Lakes wave pool model allows for a number of waves to be created around a central plunger so there can be more surfers in the water and on waves than the more traditional artificial wave pool found overseas.
As the wave pulse spreads out from the industrial-looking plunger, swell energy is then directed to shaped bottom contours which produce the fast and barrelling waves or the slow gentler rolling waves for the beginner area.
Barton Lynch and Mark Occhilupo are on-board as surf ambassadors and during the prototype testing a crew of Billabong’s sponsored surfers – including Joel Parkinson who won the 2009 Gold Coast Pro – were on hand to run a fine-tooth comb over the wave pool options.
Waiting in Anticipation
There’s no golden ticket to be the first average punter through the doors – at this stage Surf Lakes is a prototype only (doh!) but we can only hope Queensland will get a commercial wave park on this scale soon.
If you’re headed to Yeppoon to try to scope it out, check out the graffiti street art scene. And if you need to convince those non-surfing friends to jump in the car for a road trip why now consider a getaway to Great Keppel Island?