Groms and grand legends swarmed the Washout at Folly Beach last weekend, waking up early to catch the best waves while the average beachgoer slept in. The annual Governor’s Cup of Surfing, hosted by the Southern S.C. District of the Eastern Surfing Association, brought together more than 250 surfers from all over the state and parts of Georgia to show off their talents and cheer each other on.
The streets were packed with cars, but instead of the usual beach traffic frustration, there was a tangible energy in the air. Though Saturday’s weather brought better surfing conditions with waist-high waves, Sunday’s waves were ridable, but inconsistent.
Male and female surfers of all ages competed in various divisions, including the shortboard, longboard, open shortboard, tandem, bodyboard, and push-and-surf. Advanced surfers volunteered their expertise and judged contests they weren’t taking part in. When asked who was the surfer to watch, the votes were almost unanimous — Grace Muckenfuss was the up-and-coming junior woman surfer that “totally ripped.”
Although the Sunday lineup was running behind schedule, it was hard to complain about the delay. I enjoyed watching top-notch surfing from the comfort of my beach towel, surrounded by a throng of hardcore surfers (and their groupies) that looked like they could be on the cast of Baywatch.