On a recent trip to Phillip Island, I had a chance to catch up with a good friend. Janine Pike surrounds herself with all things surfing. At home, funky old surfboards decorate the outside entertaining area, while inside, there’s paintings and photos of the surf and surfers hanging all over the walls. Another of her passions is tending the amazing native garden which she has cultivated around her house.
Janine has a claim to fame. Around Phillip Island, she has been known
as “the shark lady“, after a ‘close encounter’ in the summer of 2008.
The following article was in the Herald-Sun newspaper…
According to Janine, it was a Bronze Whaler, which she never knew was circling. She was wondering why she was the only person out in the water all of a sudden….and, why was everyone waving to her???
It’s great that that encounter has not put her off surfing at all.
I asked her a few other questions……..
Q. Where do you like to surf the most?
A. Being a goofy-footer, I like Cat Bay (a lefthander) at Phillip Island. It’s a mellow wave which breaks over a reef.
Q. At what age did you start surfing?
A. I grew up in Frankston and was influenced to surf by some of my older friends, when I was 13.
Q. What type of boards are you riding?
A. I prefer longboards. I use a 9ft high performance board when the surf is bigger, and I love cruising on my 9’4″ when conditions are small and clean.
Q. Have you surfed overseas?
A. Mexico – Baja and Puerto Escondido, where I got pounded by the heavy shorebreak! U.S.A – San Diego and San Franscico, and Indonesia – Bali.
Q. What advice would you give to women just starting out with surfing?
A. I think everyone should surf within their own ability and not get caught in situations where they’re out of control. To improve in surfing, it helps to work on general fitness, especially arm strength (for paddling).
Q. Where do you work?
A. I’m the “student welfare co-ordinator” at a Frankston secondary school – it’s very challenging, but I love it.
Thanks Janine, hope to catch some fun waves with you, next time we’re at the Island