500 Retrospective: Coast to Coast

In celebration of All The Best reaching 500 episodes, we’re looking back into the archives and replaying episodes that, while recorded in years past, remain relevant today.

This week we’re bringing you ‘Coast to Coast’, an episode that first aired in September 2012. For many people, the ocean rouses a sense of excitement and adventure, a chance to do something that hasn’t been done before. Enjoy these stories, inspired by the place where the land meets the sea.


Stories ahoy! All the Best brings you intriguing tales from the high seas. A South American geologist’s rough-and-tumble journey on a raft to Australia leads to a life-changing encounter with Gough Whitlam. And, the real Puberty Blues: a young girl tries to join the blokey surf culture of the 1970s- but an initiation rite in the water goes terribly wrong.

That Summer of ’75
Forget the TV series and the book: the real Puberty Blues started in the summer of 1975. Shé Hawkes was 14, and had begun doing something absolutely outrageous on the beach. Shé- a girl- had started to surf. It wasn’t something that the other surfers were going to let her get away with.

These days, Shé is a writer and academic: read her piece about women breaking into the surf culture of 1970s Australia, and a fictionalised version of her summer of ’75.

Interview, recording: Kate Montague
Edited by Belinda Lopez
Music credits: Room with a view (Jahzzar) / CC BY-SA 3.0; Instrumental – Restoration (Dan Warren) / CC BY-NC-SA 3.0; Instrumental – The Buddha (Dan Warren) / CC BY-NC-SA 3.0

Sea Hitchhiker
In 1970, Gabriel Salas had just finished his university studies in Chile and thought he’d try and hitchhike around South America. But what was meant to be your average graduate road trip turned into an adventure across the sea. It also led to a fateful meeting with Gough Whitlam, just as Chile turned from democracy to dictatorship.

See photos and read more about Gabriel’s Salas’ adventure in this blog post by Zacha Rosen.

Produced by Zacha Rosen
Music credits: Jupiter The Blue (gillicuddy) / CC BY-NC 3.0; Opening Doors (Jamie Evans) / CC BY-NC-SA 3.0; El barzón (Los Amparito) / CC BY-NC-SA 2.5; Spring Rain (Aaron Ximm) / CC BY-NC-SA 3.0

Presenter: Georgia Moodie
Features Executive Producer: Belinda Lopez
Executive Producers: Giordana Caputo, Eliza Sarlos, Jesse Cox

Picture Credit: Gabriel Salas’ La Balsa raft after being located and towed into Mooloolaba Boat Harbour, Mooloolaba on 5 November 1970. Courtesy of Heritage Library, Sunshine Coast Council
Music credit: Skitzin by Shining Bird. Free download here.