Judging by the crowds on days like today, not many people like to brave storms to go surfing. Its like they think that as soon as it is raining that the surf is closed. Well, I know that’s not the actual thought but it is always worth a check if there is swell running regardless of “storm” conditions.
Today was not perfect by any means, but it was not victory at sea either. In between growing squalls of south winds the sets would come through and were actually really fun, lined-up, shoulder high waves. The crowd was the best thing about it too, there was one guy on a peak 400 yards north of me, 2 guys on a peak 200 yards south, and one other guy where I was surfing. These guys know the secret as well I guess.
Surfing during a storm is never like a day with “good” conditions; you get rain in your eyes, you have to paddle more, and the waves might do some unexpected things. This is fun to me. The ocean simply seemed more alive today, I even saw a big knothead sea lion; I know they live down here but nothing compared to the numbers up north.
We are getting a good swell during this storm, usually I’d bitch about the timing, but California needs precipitation so bad I’m not going to let it bother me that much. I’m sure there are going to be windows to surf all weekend, although the Saturday forecast looks to be the definition of victory at sea. Any size like that is worth checking, even if it just to watch the ocean when its angry.
But by all means, please stay home when its stormy. The waves suck, the wind and rain bother your eyes, and the massive amounts of toxic runoff will kill you instantly.
There might be some corners out there, but its bigger than it looks
The flat spell and impending baseball season has kept me from updating this blog for a couple weeks. Without surf I sometimes lack inspiration and baseball season being around the corner makes me a busy man at work.
Anyway, I have a new board that I’m getting some sessions on so I can do a proper review so look for that. Also, in the meantime I will be digging deep and reviewing boards from my past.
There’s some swell right now, go get it
Sometimes the ocean has a way of reminding you who’s boss. I paddled out into blown-out, crappy windswell this morning just to get a maintenance session and was greeted with a paddle that made me feel like I was paddling out at Sloat St. on a 20′ day. The waves were really, really shitty but somehow it took me 10 or 15 minutes to get out to the lineup. The lineup was no more than 100 yards offshore either. Even better, conditions were changing enough that the rip followed me as I navigated sideways to get out of it. It was one of those cases to just keep paddling and get there.
I surf all the time. I’m in great shape from this past run of swell. I was a competitive swimmer. But sometimes the ocean has to show its strength. I eventually made it out, and laughed at myself when I got there. I surfed for a while in mediocre waves that maybe got shoulder high on the biggest sets, and finally rode one in as it was time to go to work. Despite the wind coming up even more, I noticed two more guys paddling out. They looked like they were on a treadmill, stuck in the same hole I was in on my way out. I chuckled to myself and felt a little pride come back since it wasn’t just me getting beat up out there.
My shoulders are still sore.