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jettygirl online surf magazine's second annual new year's feature

Yvonne Mendel, Second Annual Jettygirl New Year's Feature, 2009. Jettygirl Online Surf Magazine

Presented by Blue Surf Sanctuary

yvonne mendel

JettyGirl: While faltering economies, political turmoil and energy issues dominated most of the headlines during the past year, much of 2008's good news slipped through the cracks. What's the best thing that happened to you in 2008 and what are you most hopeful for in 2009?
Yvonne Mendel: The best thing that happened to me was going to Hossegor, France for the month of September to surf and spend time with my in-laws!! My husband joined me for the last two weeks of the trip. The warm, hollow beach breaks and shorty wetsuits were a big change from surfing on Vancouver Island, Canada!

In 2009, I hope to engage my family and friends to make more environmentally friendly choices in surfing and in life, like buying locally produced clothing and reselling old boards to get the most use out of them. I have started a Facebook group to help girls carpool out to the surf and I am fighting against developers at our longest wave. I am lobbying for the government to make the space a public park.

JG: Tell us about the first time you ever stood up on a surfboard. Where was it and what were you riding?
YM: My friend gave me his first board for $100. It was in great shape and had a hand-drawn Barracuda fish on it. It was shaped in Victoria, BC by Barracuda’s Carl White. I took it to Tofino and worked on standing up at Long Beach. I also took it to France with me where I broke the nose off surfing at high tide in Morocco.

JG: What is your current favorite board? In 2009 do you have any plans to experiment with different surfboard designs, materials or fin configurations?
YM: My favorite board is a 9'0" Roland noserider single fin. My plan is to buy a high performance longboard with three smaller fins on it and I'm looking to try surfing fish. I really value being able to surf a variety of boards. Someday I hope to be able to surf extremely hollow spots so I travel and surf super hollow spots with my husband. I don't want to hold him back and I want to progress as fast as possible. Now that I have a full time job, that's going to be difficult but not impossible!

JG: Do you have any heroes? If so, who and why?
YM: My hero is my Oma (grandmother) because she had a vision for her family. She moved to Canada in 1952 with her husband and three small children. She made many sacrifices to help feed them and give them the best life possible. Her dream was to see her grandchildren educated and prosperous. I think she would feel proud to see me finished university and working in a job that allows me to have a great work/life balance. We use her small Chevy Tracker to go surfing and we think of her every time we use her camping gear. She was a role model for me because she was a strong advocate for the environment and women's rights.

JG: In 2009 we'll see the best single maneuver ever done by a female surfer. Who do you think will pull the move and what do you think it will be?
YM: In truth, I don't follow the pros very closely but it's hard not to notice Stephanie Gilmore! I watched her on a podcast and met her by chance on the beach in France this September. The best single maneuver I can think of is a rodeo flip but I don't know if any women are concentrated on doing them.


Next Surfer: Back to the Beginning  


For those of you who like to jump around instead of going one by one, here's the complete list of surfers...

Alizee Arnaud Elizabeth Pepin Silva Kassia Meador Nicole Grodesky Schuyler McFerran
Amee Donohoe Erica Hosseini Kelly Nicely Nikita Robb Serena Brooke
Anna Garaway Frieda Zamba Kim Mayer Nikki Brooks Shaney Jo Darden
Anne Beasley Weber Heather Hudson Crummer Kim Mearig Paige Hareb Shannon Switzer
Ashley Lloyd Heather Jordan Kyla Langen Pam Burridge Silvana Lima
Bethany Hamilton Holly Beck Kym Campbell Pauline Ado Sofia Mulanovich
Betty Depolito Jacqueline Silva Lauren Sweeney Pauline Menczer Sormarie Nieves
Chanelle Sladics Jenna Balester Laurina McGrath Prue Jeffries Stacey Guy
Christa Alves Jenni Flanigan Layne Beachley Rebecca Woods Tammy-Lee Smith
Claire Bevilacqua Jessi Miley-Dyer Leah Dawson Rochelle Ballard Yvonne Mendel
Cori Schumacher Josie Drude Lynne Dickinson Rosy Hodge  
Courtney Conlogue Julie Cox Marissa Graham Sage Erickson  
Danielle Beck Kaitlin Maguire Mary Osborne Sally Fitzgibbons  
Darlene Conolly Karin Kendrick Megan Abubo Sam Haddad  
Donna von Hoesslin Karlee Mackie Nicola Atherton Sara Taylor  


Image Caption: Words of encouragement sometimes come from the most unlikely of places. Canadian surfer Yvonne Mendel is a great friend to JettyGirl and we deeply appreciate her kind words and unquenchable stoke for surfing. It's ironic, but some of the "warmest" photos and emails we receive come from the snow-covered beaches of Vancouver Island, Canada. Photo: Yvonne Mendel

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