We took his advice as gospel, legged it to the van and made some headway that afternoon and rocked up to the area early evening, grabbed a tourist guide and spent ages trying to find an off-season campsite (finding out the hard way that there aren't many).
Found one just outside Bayonne after driving for ages, paid up, and as it was pishing down, the lady at the site said we were more than welcome to use the sheltered area in their new complex - superb!
We cooked up some gnocchi and tuna, set the free standing tents under the canopy, Eards set out his rollmat in the van (which by the way he was rather tight at sharing..) and looked forward to some nice kip and dreams of beautiful waves the following day.
After two hours kip I was woken up by some voices outside and lights coming on at the complex. Next thing, I heard lots of shouting, clattering, things being dragged and our tent being shaken.
A bit bleary eyed I opened a tent to find a fella giving it wild hand gestures and wide eyeballed aggression, asking what the hell we were doing. Turns out this chap was the hubby of the lady we'd met earlier - who'd been down the pub for a pint or seven and was locking things up before hitting the sack.
He wasn't best pleased that we'd camped under the roof of his new complex, and that our boards were leaning against his newly painted wall.
Turns out the clattering and dragging was my beloved Stewart longboard. As he carried on shouting he walked over to Ben's one week old JP thruster and went to launch it across the patio.
At the very last minute I managed to snatch it off him. By this time, Dan had woken and popped out the tent. Dan, being the only one with a decent fluency in French tried to explain that we'd had permission to camp here.
Big French guy then went for Dan, shoved him to the floor and started to hoof my tent. He then went for me, grabbed my neck and the situation was officially a bit tasty.
After shouting sorry at him repeatedly he eventually chilled and told us we had to clear off the following morning. Eards slept through all of this of course, and wasn't chuffed when Dan and I insisted on kipping in the van that night...
We said our Au Revoirs - extended middle finger style, raided a patisserie of its fresh stock of Pain au Chocolats then went to find some surf.
With the northern swell picking up, we checked the guidebook and drove down the coast to find the best spots. We decided to stop at Guethary, after hearing all about its big wave potential.
We weren't disappointed, as we saw brave folk dropping into 20ft faces at the main break and at Avalanches to the left of the car park. Knowing we'd probably kill ourselves out there, we hopped back into the van to look for something more manageable.