Palm Springs Surf Club party raw clip

Surf omnivore Blair Conklin is quickly developing a close relationship with the Palm Springs Surf Club. The stylish regular-footer attended the wave pool’s inaugural New Year’s Eve bash and lucked into an invite to surf the tank.

“With last-minute notice, Chance Gaul invited me to an expression session just as I ordered my first Paloma at the pool’s newly opened restaurant and bar,” said Blair. “I left that drink in the dust and sprinted to my car where I had hesitantly packed boards and a wetsuit to bring to the desert.”

Blair got to surf with friends who were both successfully and unsuccessfully taking on the backdoor tube setting. But at the end of the day, it was the party that everyone remembered.

“The Palm Springs Surf Club threw the best NYE party I have ever attended,” said Blair. “I went into the evening excited about attending the first-ever event that the pool had opened to the public. After surfing under LED screens and disco-style stadium lights, I realized that the Palm Springs Surf Club is in a league of its own.”

Blair is no stranger to wave pools. In fact, we found the man so stoked for surf parks, that we interviewed him at length during last year’s Surf Park Summit.

Blair sat in on the WavePoolMag Innovation panel at Surf Park Summit. Joined by the facts-and-figures elite of the artificial wave space, Blair quickly became the audience favorite with his stories of surf park exploration and experience. We caught up with Blair to get his perspective on the pulse of the wave pool world.

He explained when he chooses to surf and when he chooses to skim a pool.

“Every pool has its different settings. Some settings are beneficial for having fins, and others are beneficial for riding finless. At the Wave in Bristol, I was kind of riding their advanced setting, and it was like their standard kind of turn wave. When I was riding a traditional shortboard, it felt kind of slow, and maybe the board was too small for me, but I gravitated towards my finless board because I was able to carry a lot more speed on the face of the wave there and really lay in the turns a lot more. Same with a lot of these other pools that have good barrels, like if there’s a slab or any type of heavy barrel, I’ll usually ride a board with fins, especially backside. Going backside on a finless board can be really challenging and can be hard to keep a rail. So on these air sections, I kind of like to ride a finless board because you can come into the air section with way too much speed, and it’s almost a matter of controlling your speed so you don’t hit the section going too fast. Every pool has different waves that I like to experiment with different boards.”

You can read the full interview below. But most of all we found out that Blair likes to and invent new kinds of surfing.