Surf’s up in… inland Texas! While Texas has long been a destination for surf enthusiasts, this time, the surfing happens not in Galveston or anywhere else on a beach, but in Austin, TX. A brand new surf park has opened and it’s America’s first inland surf park!
Earlier this year, BookSurfCamps has reported on Kelly Slater’s surf pool and now we have all the details about the NLand Surf Park, surf conditions, and the pool waves!
NLand Surf Park is a surf park in Austin, Texas that opened to the public on October 7, 2016. Whether you are a kook or an expert, a kid who’s just bought their first board or a 40-year-old with a few years of surfing experience, this surf park has something for everyone. All you need to do is love surfing! What makes NLand Surf Park different from other surf parks, such as the Tourmaline Surfing Park, for example, is that it is an inland artificial park. It has no access to any beach, sea or ocean and it is completely man-made.
So, who is behind the massive 25-acre NLand Surf Park in Austin? The founder and CEO of NLand is engineer and longtime surfer Doug Coors. He’s been wanting to build a surf park in the US for a couple of decades, and now with the help of Wavegarden, a Spanish engineering firm, he has made his and other surfers’ dreams a reality. Coors revealed in a press release that “As a surfer and an engineer, NLand has been a dream of mine for the past 20 years”.
While Doug Coors lived in Hawaii and traveled the world to find some of the best surf spots in the world, surfers won’t need to go through all that trouble anymore. Now that NLand Surf Park is here, it’s safe to say that Austin, TX has just become one of the best surf towns in the USA.
Coors states that no other surf park in the US and the world compares to NLand. It offers gentle waves for unexperienced suffers, as well as 6-foot (1.8 m) pool waves and barrels. That’s enough to make even the purist surfers smile! Furthermore, the surf park is divided into three main areas: the reef, which offers steep, high performance waves you can ride for up to 35 seconds, the inside, which is called the party wave, where surfers can catch a long wave and the bay, which is perfect for new surfers and juniors.
The NLand surf park also has a juice bar, a restaurant that offers gorgeous and locally sourced freshly cooked food and also a surf shop, where you can buy or rent anything you need to have a perfect surf session.
With a capacity of 14 million gallons, the NLand Surf Park could raise a few environmental eyebrows, but the engineers thought of everything. With a complex rainwater catchment system, the structure can collect twice the amount of water it needs, so there’s no waste of water when it comes to the Austin surf park. The press release for the opening of the park reads:
NLand has built a state-of-the-art water treatment system that utilizes bio-filtration, permanent media filtration, ozone and chlorine to treat the water. Independent testing shows the water quality meets or exceeds standards set by organizations such as the World Health Organization and the Environmental Protection Agency. The lagoon is 100% self-sustaining, using a system that captures water from the property.
The NLand Surf Park surfing hours are Monday from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m., Tuesday through Sunday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. As for the Blue Prairie and Surf Shop hours, they are as follows: Monday from 1 p.m.to 7 p.m. and Tuesday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Pricing is as follows: surf passes are between $60 and $90, for a one hour or less session in the lagoon. If you need surf lessons, then a coaching session will cost you from $65 to $190 and it includes a 30-minutes dry land training and a session just under an hour in the lagoon. The prices include a softboard, but if you want a more advanced and high-performance board, you can rent one for $25.
One of the coolest things about the NLand surf park is the observation walkway. It’s a strip that runs above the wave lagoon that people can use to get an aerial view of the surfers. Good news if you’re just interested in hanging out and not doing any surfing, it costs just $5 to do that!
So, whether you are in Texas or anywhere else in the world, we recommend you go check it out, if you have the chance. According to the NLand Surf Park website, it’s a 10-minute drive from the Austin airport, 20-minute drive from downtown Austin and 3-hour drive from Dallas!
* all photos are taken from the NLand Surf Park website
Can’t make it to Austin to ride the waves? How about you do it old-school, in the ocean and book a surf camp somewhere sunny?