When you first learn about surfing in SL, its easy to become overwhelmed with information and questions. A huge inquiry is typically, where should I surf and how do I find surfers? So we're spending a little time showing you how to find what you're looking for!
How to Find Beaches:
There are 3 major ways to find the surfable beaches in Second Life. Using the search engine isn't really that effective because a lot of places use the keyword "surf" to get a wider scope of exposure without actually having a surfable beach. The best 3 ways to find the surfable beaches are as follows:
The Surfsim Teleport Board and HUD: Kantbe Thursday spends most of her free time touring all the beaches and trying to find every break she can. You'll find this Teleport Board on most beaches. Its simple to use: press the left or right arrows to choose a beach then click "Teleport" for a map to open up with the coordinates to teleport to. Or press the "Notecard" button for your very own notecard list of each beach. Make sure you first check the Legend at the bottom of the Notecard to understand what the letters at the end represent. The codes will typically tell you if there is open rezzing or group rezzing, which waves, and which board rezzers are located on that beach. Its truly the most informative and effective way to search for surf beaches on Second Life. Get a free copy at Solace Dreams Information Hut. The HUD can also be found there. The HUD is an easy-to-use wearable teleport HUD that you wear, scroll through, and click "teleport" to get to your destination.
The Surfing Community Teleport Board: While the other two options rely on people constantly keeping up with information, the Surfing Community Teleport Board automatically updates itself based on any beach that has the board on its shore. Simply look for this board at places like Kanaloa Surf Beach and click on any of the beach logos to be teleported your next location. While effective in knowing the beach is still located there it is limited in only providing you with beaches that currently have that board rezzed out.
The Surf SL website: This very website you're reading currently also has a "Second Life's Best Beaches" list with their current rezzers. Simply scroll down the list, find the beach or rezzer you're looking for and click the link to be brought to a map screen. From there you'll want to click the application (typically your viewer: Second Life; Firestorm, etc) and open to receive your teleporter. The benefit to this method is you don't have to go looking for a teleport board and can browse the list from the comforts of your current location. The simlist notecard from the Surfsim Teleport Board offers the same luxury and both Surf SL and the Kantbe Thursday work closely together to make sure we're both up-to-date.
The Destinations Guide inworld is also a great resource since they have their very own "Beaches" category. A good number of the beaches listed are surf sims, but not all which is why we didn't include it in our top 3 ways to find beaches.
So now that you know how to locate all the surf sims (there's approximately 70 out there) how do you find the ones that are the most populated with active surfers? We'll explore that next...
Where are all the Surfers:
Some beaches are definitely more populated than others and depending on what you're looking for, both can be very appealing. The first and easiest way to check is of course the Destinations Guide (pictured above) since it allows you to see the population of the beach at the time of searching.
Another way is to check the Events page on the Surf SL website. Current events are usually filled with surfers and most of the time its a predominately surf-related party. Surf SL doesn't typically promote DJ sets disguised as a surf event because there's so many on various beaches it would become way too overwhelming for us and you to keep up with.
A really great way to find the most serious surfers out there is to follow the Competition Circuits. The SL Surfing Association hosts a surf competition every month for 10 months out of the year. You will find the top surfers on the grid practicing on the posted sim for that entire month. The current location for the next surf competition is Splash Surf Beach. You can find the remaining competition schedule on the SLSA Forum.
We know this has definitely been our longest blog post and you're probably glazed over by now but its a lot of information to cover. We hope we've made the search for beaches a little easier but we're always looking for feedback on how to make it even easier.
Of course we have to add the shameless plug of telling you to continue to follow the "ABC's of Surfing" blog for an in-depth look at every beach. We post a new subject every Thurs-Sun and will feature all the beaches as they arrive in alphabetical order. We'll offer you adorable postcards to collect at those beaches as well as a free cork board to display them on. In addition to that, we'll also be educating you on all the different types of waves and surfboards. We're committed to bringing you the very best information about surfing on the grid!
Postcard and Cork Board set up at ATWF