As we all know, someone ate a dodgy bat kebab in Wuhan back in 2019 and threw the world into chaos for a couple of years. Our beloved Telo Island Lodge – the first surf camp in the Telos – was forced into an extended hibernation as a result.

The good news is this allowed us to smarten the place up, and we’re happy to say the old girl has thrown the doors open once again for our first trip of 2023. Let’s meet the crew.…

Scot Listavich, Maui // civil engineer by trade, civil fella by nature, connecting with everyone with genuine good vibes. This father of three was always keen to hit the surf, no matter how surfed out.

Kevin Mcintyre, California // Imagine coming for a surf trip but – due to an old shoulder injury – not being able to surf! Kevin earned the nickname Kev The Coconut ’cos his noggin looked like a coconut floating through the lineup. Always making a joke and having a laugh.

Jan Sirchuk, Oregon // Jan’s been on a six-month recovery trail from surgery, and showed suitable patience in the lineup. When the waves came his way, he rode them with style, stoke and appreciation. Legend! (Note Coconut Kevin in foreground)

James Wille, Longbeach // Patriarch of the Wille family, (who just might be the coolest family ever)/ This retired primary teacher may cruise on land but doesn’t hold back in the water, or as front man for his band, Furry Squirrel.

Marianne Wille // For a non-surfer, Marianne spent as much time in (snorkelling) and on (SUP) the ocean as anyone. Fluent in Bahasa thanks to a childhood in Indo, Marianne had deep conversations with the locals.

Riley Wille // Only 23 but he’s already shaped 120 boards! Smiley Riley’s super easy going, didn’t care where we surfed, just as long as we surfed! Tore Kindys and Max’s Right to pieces.

Corrie Wille // A talented artist with excellent taste in Aussie surf rock music (we told you they were the coolest family ever) and had a few paddles with Dad James. Corrie almost fell off the back of the scooter on our Telo Tour, which was funnier than it sounds here.

Head high surf and glorious weather was the standard for the trip, with a few days nudging overhead and bringing Max’s Right – our home break – into play. Between surfs we toured Telo, swam the equator, cruised the mangroves. This was a group who knew early nights meant early surfs, so only a few large-ish nights on the mojitos were had.

Hosting such an epic guest group was a hugely positive way to launch Telo Island Lodge back into life. With the legendary and experienced Dingo calling the shots, rookie / trial guide Skye doing an epic job, and gun new photographer Elise snapping up a storm, 2023 looks amazing! Let’s all just stay away from those dodgy bat kebabs.

Here’s a bunch of pics to see us out.

And finally, presenting TIL’s prestigious “Lost-in-the-Moment” award. Young Riley, pausing for thought, poised on the gunnel, with it all ahead of him. Go well, fella, keep crafting dreams of foam and fibreglass.

Thanks for coming everyone! It was a pleasure and a privilege. Viva Telo Island Lodge!