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The minimum recommended age is 14 years

Cloud Nine

Cloud Nine

Siargao island - Surigao del Norte, Philippines

Surf, Bodyboard

Cloud 9 is a right reef break and is known as the Backdoor of the Philippines. It’s located in the General Luna village on Siargao Island and it’s the most popular surfing destination there. This volcanic archipelago is located in the Pacific Ring of Fire, where reefs alternate between capes and beaches. It remains as one of the few places in the world where if you pay attention to some of the guides, you may be surprised how far they can take you because there are some excellent and quite waves in nearby places.  

There is some evidence that it was surfed in the early eighties, but its discovery became official in the late eighties when a loner named Max Walker, or Mad Max as he was known locally, went to live in a primitive cabin at Tuason point, just in front of the break. Unfortunately, malnutrition got the better of him. It was soon discovered that he was very similar to Mike Boyum, the legendary surfer who discovered G-Land and hid away from the world to end his days here. In his honour, the locals called Cloud 9 Boyum’s until 1992 when the American photographer John S. Callahan went there with Taylor Knox and Evan Slater to make a memorable report for the well-known Surfer Magazine and showed this wave to the rest of the world. Curiously, the wave then got its name from the bar of chocolate Cloud 9 which was commonly eaten there. Since then, the scene has changed slightly in the small town of General Luna, especially around Tuason Point, just in front of Cloud 9, where surfing has become the engine of the local economy without having lost the original essence of the place.

To get there, there are flights and boats that go between the different islands every day at very reasonable prices. We recommend that you go by boat as the airlines currently don’t let you take surfboards. From Cebu, there are various public ferries that go to Dapa in Siargao and once you are there, you’re 30 minutes away from General Luna. Cloud 9 is an ideal place to start your Philippine experience. You’ll find a variety of accommodation options, a good atmosphere and easy access to the waves. Remember to go there prepared and find out about any necessary vaccinations beforehand. These coasts have consistent waves partly due to the trenches in the sea which can be up to 500 metres deep and are only a kilometre from Tuason Point. This mechanical slab, if it’s glassy, offers supreme perfection without the violence of other similar waves in the South Pacific or Indonesia. Normally if there are good conditions it’s quite crowded, but in the Philippines, you’re in a place where there’s a good vibe and in any case, you’ll have options with the other nearby waves at Tuason Point, Jack Horse and Rock Island.

cloudnine-surf

Conditions

You can catch waves at any time of year but you should know that from January to April is the worst time and in addition, onshore dominates. July to October is a good time because it’s the typhoon season and it sometimes creates epic conditions. From October onwards, the best months are normally November and December. During these months, the predominant wind is offshore from the southwest.

The best conditions are with east swell and light southwest winds. Cloud 9 is a technical wave with a fast take off. With 6 feet it requires a good level, above all with low tide. The ideal for most surfers is 3 or 4 feet with mid tide. High tide is a good option for those that want to try their first barrels.With northeast swell, the last section becomes a wedge, which is appreciated by the bodyboarders, and a short, intensive left also occasionally leaves the peak.
Optimal Conditions
  • Wave
    Right
  • Wind
    SW
  • Tide
    Medium - High
  • Swell
    NE - E
  • Bottom
    Coral reef
  • Size
    2 to 10 ft
  • Time of year
    From july to Novemeber
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