Mentawai surf guide interview by Ben Horvath
Sebastian Imizcoz is the surf guide and the photographer for the charter boat Aileoita in the Mentawai. Seb has been guiding since 1999 and he has been shooting surfing since 2000.
This is his 11th season on the Mentawai islands. Seb speaks 5 languages, so he is a great communicator with most nationalities.
All the photos in this interview are taken by Seb. The Perfect Wave’s global marketing manager Ben Horvath caught up with Seb for a brief chat between charters recently.
Ben Horvath (BH) – How did you end up on Aileoita?
Sebastian Imizcoz (SI) – I was the first digital photographer to work in Nias. One day a surf charter boat, guide Jordan Heuer showed up in Nias and I took a bunch of photos of them. Most guests bought the photos, I gave out personal card, and 2 years later I got an email from Jordan with a job offer. That was a dream come true for me.
BH – Last year was a particularly good season, tell us about a couple of personal highlights?
SI – For me the highlight was to explore more down south. We ended up surfing many days by ourselves. Every one of the 11 seasons I have been here have been great. I have also started working with my drone and so am getting some sick new angles for the photos.
BH – How has season 2015 been so far?
SI – I have already completed 3 charter trips this season and all of them were awesome. I always compare the 10 days at sea to say a waiting period for a contest on the CT. Sometimes they don’t get good conditions during the waiting period for the contest. That never happens here in the Mentawai. Every single trip I have been on, there were waves.
BH – Tell me have you got any spots left on upcoming charters this year?
SI – We have some single spots on trips in July – August, and then at the end of October we have some more empty places. I kind of like that time of the year because it’s less crowded.
BH – What type of advice would you give Mentawai virgins planning their first trip?
SI – Just come and enjoy! We have plenty of waves for all kinds of surfers. My job is to show the guests a menu of waves for the day, then the group decide where to surf. If they want small fun waves, I’ll take them there. If they want gnarly barrels, I’ll take them there too. Everything depends on the swell and winds.
BH – What do you do in the off season?
SI – This season I’ll be ski guiding in Switzerland, taking groups to ski in some of the best places in the world.