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Posts Tagged ‘New Jetty’

The North Side of Point Sur.  Notice the sick little left hander in the background.  I will only say this about the photo, it was shot about a mile away.  Translation, that wave is way bigger then it looks! Harder to get too as well.

The North Side of Point Sur. Notice the sick little left hander in the background. I will only say this about the photo, it was shot about a mile away. Translation, that wave is way bigger then it looks! Harder to get too as well.

There is a place just north of San Simeon, and south of Carmel that will change one’s perspectives on life in general. A mere seventy some odd miles of coastline, Big Sur is an expanse of vistas and adventure locked into a desolate speck of California that is awe inspiring.  I am a person who has traversed a large part of the coastal world, seen and experienced many amazing things in my life time.  What I came across on my recent trip into Big Sur left my mind blown and my heart longing for a simpler life.  My inner yearning for an existence beyond the reaches of man was once again rekindled.  An answer was posed to the question: “There must be a better way?”.
Big Sur, Northern CoastFor over ten years I have been avoiding this seemingly daunting stretch of coastline.  “Don’t waste your time with Big Sur if you want to surf” said one surf guide.  “The only true locals are the sharks and their brand of localism will kill you” said another.  I even found a statistic claiming the only killer Whale attack in North America ever recorded on a human happened in Big Sur to a knee boarder.  Throw in gnarly erratic weather, frigid water and heavy fog and lets just say I was always far from eager to make my way through.  The only time I travel up the coast is to get waves and rather then waste it and swell on a shot in the dark I have always focused my energy between Monterey and San Mateo Counties where the options and score probability are way better.

The last time I actually did drive the PCH down Big Sur was with my parents.  It was night time, the fog was so thick I could barely see five feet in front of me.  Both my Mom and Dad were passed out, while I clung to the edge of my seat, my ass so tight it could turn coal into diamonds, traversing this crazy windy road with sheer death at times on either side if I was to make a wrong move and go off the road.  When we finally got to San Simeon, our projected destination it was two and a half hours later to go eighty miles and I was so wound up I needed a fucking drink.  Of course the liquor store was closed and the bull shit motel had no mini bar.  I found myself frantically knocking at the night manager’s office to see if he had a nip.  Lucky for me most night auditors are drunks and the guy was stoked to share a flask of whisky with me.

Bixby Creek Bridge, pretty in the day light, but at night with intense fog an easy way to die.

Bixby Creek Bridge, pretty in the day light, but at night with intense fog an easy way to die.

Fast forward back to recently, Heather and I had been talking about doing one of those cliche romantic couple get-a-away type trips for sometime.  Truth be told I had never really been on such a trip before and thought maybe I have been cheating myself all these years.  Also I never have dated the type of woman who would have been interested in such.  Lets face it most of my romantic dealings with women are lucky to last past dropping her off in the morning. This whole serious relationship thing has been completely new ground for me with a harsh fucking learning curve.  Fuck I thought getting proficient at surfing was tough.  It’s a cake walk compared to this.

We decided that we would get a little place somewhere in the woods for a few days in February as sort of a birthday gift/engagement gift.  I wanted to go someplace beyond the reaches of both cell phones and internet.  I really was interested to get away and have some quality one on one time with my lady sans interruptions from the rest of the world.  Whatever the needs of the real world wanted it would have to wait a few days.  Originally the plan was to go find some snow and get a little cabin up in the mountains somewhere.  Then Heather mentioned Big Sur and around that same time a friend of mine from back east had just recently spent some time there and had a rather good time with his girl.

I wanted to try and leave surfing out of the equation as best as possible.  Those of you who are or know die hard surfers know that if you put a surfer near the coast with a chance of scoring waves it will consume him no matter what  the initial objective of the trip was.  As I stated earlier I had not ever really considered Big Sur for a surfing destination thus leaving it in the scope of a potential destination.  We managed to find a cute little cabin in the woods just as we had hoped.  I decided to pack a step up and a 5’10 just in case.  The idea of surfing Big Sur was more of a novelty then anything else to me.

An unexpected yet exactly what I expected of the Big Sur surfing experience.  Big, windy, scary conditions with no one out but me.

An unexpected yet exactly what I expected of the Big Sur surfing experience. Big, windy, scary conditions with no one out but me.

Just like that the trip was set for February 12-14th.  Believe me going away for Valentine’s Day was not part of my plan and only painstakingly added to the utter cliche of the whole endeavor.  Trust me I cringe at the thought of Valentines Day.  Fuck I wrote a great little piece on the whole fake Holiday: “#@%% Valentine’s Day“.  You can click the link to visit that blog for some fun Lisanti anger blindly targeted at yet another bull shit day.  I must say I was rather looking forward to the trip all things considered.  I never get to do anything different these days being I am so locked into the monotony of my daily routine. Heather and I rarely get any real quality alone time together either, considering our very contrasting schedules and lives.

The Journey North
BigSurFeb14-111
The plan was to leave early in the morning Wednesday the 12th and slowly work our way up Pacific Coast Highway taking in whatever sights came our way.  I hate rushing anywhere when I am on vacation.  Half the fun of taking a road trip some place is the act of getting there.  I have been on some trips where the actual process of getting there turned out to be more fun then the actual objective. Of course thanks impart to an impromptu dinner engagement the previous evening and bit too much wine those great laid plans of an early departure were all but forgotten.  

Instead I decided to go surf New Jetty considering that Heather was still fast asleep, not packed or ready to embark upon an early north mission.  When God closes a door he opens a window after all and in this case it was meager but rip-able new Jetty where I managed to get into an altercation with some stupid kid.  So maybe it wasn’t such a great window after all.  Still I got a few.  I you feel so inclined you can read about that bull shit session in the February SurfLog, the 2-12 entry.

New Jetty 2514

New Jetty living it up in the worlds best average wave and winner of the “better then nothing” category.

In classic Lisanti fashion we did not get on the road till around 2 pm.  Not that it was a really big deal or anything.  At that point I had come to the terms with the fact that it was going to be long past dark before we made it to Big Sur.  My only worry was the difficulty of finding the cabin considering the remoteness of it’s location.  Then again I figured we could cross that bridge when we came to it and it would only add to the adventure. The only positive thing about the late start was not having to worry about traffic since it’s pretty desolate up north and we were timed perfect to just miss the start of rush hour in Santa Maria and the end of it in San Luis Obispo.  The trip was smooth sailing all the up.

When we got into SLO I headed for the coast.  The wind appeared to be on it, but I had that st small hope of being able to find something to surf for feeding hour.  Morro Bay was all blown out.  One guy was paddling the State Beach there, but conditions were far from inviting.  Rather then waste time getting all cold and frustrated attempting to surf trash  I decided to keep cruising while day light was available.  Plus I was hoping to get up to this beach just north of Hearst Castle that is one of the largest elephant seal rookeries along the central coast.  I had missed it on my last trip.

The iconic Morro Rock, Morro Bay

The iconic Morro Rock, Morro Bay

We weaved our way up the coast in the waning light in all its golden red splendor.  The ocean was on one side and the vast coastal hills to the other.  Everything had all the makings of a perfect sunset and I hate wasting one.  I found a chill little spot to pull over just under Point Piedras Blancas.  There we watched the sun slowly sink beyond the horizon into the ocean.  Behind us was the silhouette of Hearst Castle sitting on its hill top perch.  Every time I see that impressive structure I cannot help but imagine what it must have been like to watch a sunset from one of the many verandas there.   Nothing puts a day in perspective for me better then a good sunset.

Hearst Castle, a must visit if one finds himself on the Central Coast.

Hearst Castle, a must visit if one finds himself on the Central Coast.

Luckily for us the beach with all of the seals was only a few miles away and we got there with just enough twilight left to see the scene.  As soon as I stepped out of the car I was greeted with the craziest seal sounds I had ever heard.  There was barking, screaming, cooing, snickering, snorting and howling.  It was almost comical.  Then I got to the bluff and the entire beach was littered with seals.  It was rather entertaining and if not for the darkness and intense cold I think I could have stayed there for hours. The show had to go on and we were still a good few hours from our targeted destination.

For awhile there was nothingness as far as the eye could see.  At most times I was the only car on the road in the darkness.  After a good forty minutes of driving we entered the southern most part of Big Sur, Ragged Point. There was a small little resort area there called, you guessed it, “Ragged Point”.  Thinking it might be our last look at civilization for God knows how long I decided we should stop and see about getting dinner.  I also would like to mention that I forgot to grab my Central California Tour Guide book, only grabbing my surf guide and the weakest on of the three I had at that.  Figuratively and literally in the dark we decided a bird in the hand was better then two in the bush.

The restaurant there was certainly bit on the fancy and pricier side than I was hoping for. Beggars can’t be choosers and in the rush of our late departure I also failed to pack adequate groceries for a journey into the uncivilized unknown.  I pride myself on my ability to understand the terrain I am entering on any trip I decide to take on.  I was this time around distracted by other stupidity going on in my life prior to departure and therefore found myself completely unprepared and thus had to wing it.  Alone I don’t really have a problem with that, but with Heather in tow I felt a bit more uptight and nervous of our situation.

My expectations for this place was that I was going to shell out a lot of money for a less then stellar meal.  Believe it or not I was rather shocked at the quality and portion size of our food.  Heather ordered a very tasty sauteed jumbo scallop dish and I had a Lobster Pot Pie that easily had  six ounces of lobster in it and was so tasty I considered stopping in on my way home.  Whatever the case if your ever in Big Sur I highly recommend stopping for at least one meal at the Ragged Point Dinning Room.

After a our splendid meal it was back on the road for us.  We were graced with a full moon and a very clear night making  driving conditions as good as could be asked for in Big Sur.  Seriously the moon was so bright I could nearly seemas good as if it were day. We drove the windy road in and out of the craggy coast line.  About thirty minutes in I decided to pull over and have a look at my surroundings. Heather was sound asleep in the passenger seat as I stepped out onto the seaside cliff and looked out.  Everything looked amazing in the silvery moon light.  I had not seen so many stars since my tenure in New Zealand. The ocean was shimmering as the waves crashed in and out of the cliffs below.  There was some type of rock formation out in the ocean as well that was just getting pounded by the force of the waves.   It was a surreal moment and reminded me just how lucky it was to be alive to experience such an amazing moment of solitude.

Our Cabin was about another half hour or so in the actual town of Big Sur.  When we got there it was after ten and everything was closed and not a person was stirring.  The cabin was off the Highway 1 down a non-nondescript dirt road.  Basically what this came down to is that the road was near impossible to find.  I was given the most vague directions possible: “look for a big tree with a group of mail boxes near it.  Road is passable by all vehicles but may be  seem intimidating if your not used to country roads.”  This is all I had to go by.

After almost thirty minutes of driving around in circles I finally came to what I thought to be the road up to the cabin.  “Accessible by all Vehicles”, well I guess that is a different understanding for different people.  In my little Civic coupe that is very low to the ground this muddy, rocky, root filled, pot hole ridden excuse for a road seemed like it was going to be near impossible.  Coming into to it we passed a rusted out tow truck and a beat up atv.  We figured that must be the Calvary to help get guest out who get stuck.

Our cute little cabin in the woods.

Our cute little cabin in the woods.

This creepy ass road through the woods in the dark with no one in sight just had a very “Deliverance” sort of feel to it.  Then to make matters worse the road began to climb at like an 18% grade.  How my car made it was beyond me.   Sure she bottomed out a few times, but came through no worse for the wiser.  We finally got in front of this cabin and it is full on looking a bit like “The Evil Dead”.  I was waiting for Bruce Campbell to show up with a chainsaw attached to his arm and start hacking away at the rape tree.  Actually it was a cute little cabin and I think both of us were very happy to get inside.  As soon as we were settled I built us a warm fire, which we wasted no time in snuggling down in front of.

Nothing rewards a long journeys end like a warm fire.

Nothing rewards a long journeys end like a warm fire.

From there it was into bed for us with excitement for what adventures tomorrow would hold.  I was hoping to find some waves.  Both of us were interested to see all the sights that we missed arriving in the dark.  Among all things it was nice to leave all of our troubles of the real world behind and fins a little time in seclusion with just us and nature.  In my opinion you cant ask for much more out of life then that.

For more Big Sur Adventuring check out Part II!!!!!!!
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Talk about a load of absolute bullshit!  Worse then bullshit.  I think I would have much rather have been dragged through a pile of filthy, smelly bullshit any day then have to live through a month of poor surf like I have never seen anyplace, anytime, my entire life.  Yeah, it was not the best summer on record for California.  We only saw one really exceptionally large south swell all season, the sand bars at Santa Clara River Mouth were average, Lowers was average and packed, as was just about ever other place I surfed. Never the less I stayed wet with the minor south swells that graced our coast.

Then August came along and it was as if the pacific ocean decided it wanted to fuck everyone who surfed in California over for the entire month.  Most days the report read 1-2 ft.  Some even read flat.  What little swell that did trickle up to the 805 was absolute crap not worth the drive.  Every day I kept hoping for things to pick up, but they didn’t.  When all was said and done I had surfed just five times in the entire month.  Since I started surfing I don’t think I can even remember a month that piss poor.  Some how I managed to not kill or maim myself,  end up in jail or get on a plane and disappear to a better surf locale.  Nope, I grinned and bared it like the rest of my fellow Californian surfers.  Lets just hope August was the sacrifice we needed for a good fall and even better winter.  If not I am going to have to move.  Here are my pathetic numbers:

Surf Sessions: 5
Days Surfed: 5
Time in the Water: 8 hrs
Waves Surfed: 172
Average Waves Caught Per Hour: 22 

Spots Surfed:
Emma Wood: 1
Gold Coast: 1
Ocean Beach, San Francisco: 1
Morro Bay, San Luis Obispo: 1
New Jetty: 1

I have no top surf sessions this month cause basically they all sucked.  The Ocean Beach session was the best of the lot and that was just barely palatable.  To read about a month of misery and a look into a surfer’s brain when there are no waves check out the August ’13 edition of the surflog.

Here I am looking very enthusiastic after 1 out of the 5 surfs I had in August. Note the lack of waves in the background.

Here I am looking very enthusiastic after 1 out of the 5 surfs I had in August. Note the lack of waves in the background.

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Could this have really happened?  That was my first thought as I compiled June’s surf numbers. I put an unprecedented amount of time in for a month that is usually barely ride-able at best.  The north pacific decided to keep the ball running through the bulk of June.  At the same time the south pacific graced us with just enough magic to remind everyone here in central California that south swells actually do exist north of Point Mugu.

Besides mother nature who is not even close to making up for the skunking we faced here in the 805 this past winter, there are a few other factors I need to acknowledge that allowed me to maximize the most out of my surfing in June.  First I must thank America for their great unemployment system, sure I only get around $230 take home a week, but I don’t have to work either.  Although it is a pain in the ass to fill out the five question form, put it in an envelope adhere a stamp and take it to the post office.  First off I am unemployed, so why is it that the government thinks I can afford a packet of stamps?  That shit ought to be postage paid.  Then do you know how hard it is to find a mailbox these days?  The post office near my house closed down.  How the fuck a U.S. Postal Office closes is beyond me.  Damn broke ass government.

I think they do it on purpose to make things more difficult for free loaders like myself to get those unemployment forms in.  I have to give a shout out to my girlfriend Heather for keeping me out of the Wild Cat more times then not.  I had no idea how much more time I could spend surfing and how much better I can surf when not hung over till 5 pm everyday.   My overly stoked surfing buddy Trevor whom with out his blind love for absolutely terrible waves and grom like surf stoke kept me in the water more then a few days I would have not even bothered.  Besides all of that it was a super fun  month of average to good California in surprisingly warm water.  Here are the numbers and as usual feel free to enjoy daily surf updates in the surflog.

Surf Sessions: 34
Days Surfed: 24

Total Water Time: 62 hrs
Total Waves Surfed: 932
Average Waves Surfed per Hour: 15

Spots Surfed:
Emma Wood: 9
New Jetty: 6
Santa Clara River Mouth: 6
Mesa Lane: 4
Lower Trestles, San Clemente: 2
El Capitan: 1
Rincon: 1
Hammonds: 1
Leo Carrillo, Malibu: 1
Oxnard Shores: 1
Pitas: 1
Solimar: 1

Top 3 Surf Sessions taken directly from the June ’13 Surflog:

3)6-27-13 AM Session: 4-6+ft, Santa Clara River Mouth
Time in Water: 2 hrs, 45 mins

Waves Surfed: 33
I knew it was going to be solid today.  Everything just depended on the wind.  I got to the Harbor and there was some WSW wind on it and things were really foggy.  New Jetty had a wave but it looked average at best and bit on the crowded side for what was coming in.  I took a walk down to River Mouth and sure enough there were clean enough peaks coming in.  It was hallow as hell.  I saw a wave spit while I was checking it.  I paddled and it was way heavier then I had expected.  Full on double up bowls and some creepy rouge close outs from the west.  I managed a handful of crazy barrels the first half of the session. As the tide came up it became a rip fest out there.  It was solid and super fun to surf in waves of consequence again.  I came in due to exhaustion from fighting the current.  I decided to kick it in the lot for a chance at another session in the afternoon.

2) 6-29-13 PM Session: 3-5+ft, Santa Clara River Mouth
Time in Water: 2 hrs 15 mins

Waves Surfed: 36
I got a late start today courtesy of a full black out at the Wild Cat.  I don’t even remember walking in.  I was hung over as  fuck all day.  The surf was firing so finally I manned up at the end of the day grabbed Heather and headed to surf.  Luckily the wind decided to stay down and the surf was firing.  Ryan met up with us and we trotted down to the reeds where it was going off.  Barrels, kill-able sections everything you would want out of a surf.  There was almost no crowd.  The sunset was amazing and water was warm. I must say it was another great day of surfing.

1) 6-28-13 AM Session: 3-5+ft, Oxnard shores
Time in Water: 2 hrs

Waves Surfed: 38
I decided to check Rincon first thing this morning and seriously almost vomited at the destruction the new highway expansion program has done to the sanctity of Rincon.  Of course it will not be till the winter when we find out if the sea wall extension will cause extra backwash in the bottom of the Cove.  Lets hope not, but hey who cares as long as there can now be three lanes of bumper to bumper traffic instead of two.  I was at the bottom of the trail when I ran into to regulars, die hard Rincon locals and good friends of mine.  Both were not very enthusiastic.  We were chilling up in the lot for a spell when I got a text from Ryan that Oxnard Shores was on.  Considering the tide and swell direction I figured he was spot on.  I booked it down there and as I was changing all these guys were getting out.  I was afraid it had already turned off.  The Shores is one of those very fickle spots.  To my shock they said it was firing and that they were just too tired to surf anymore.  Gordo pulled up and we paddled.  Sure enough it was about as fun as waves can get.  Head high to over head, glassy, perfect A frame bowls up and down the beach.  I got my first ten waves before the half hour mark.  It was amazing, not a drop of water out of place.  Not really hallow although there were a few shacks.  Just completely rip-able surf.  I went to fucking town.  Might have been one of the best sessions I have had all year.  Soo much fun.

Just another perfect end to another perfect day of surfing in the month of June.

Just another perfect end to another perfect day of surfing in the month of June.

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I was charged up this May, way too stoked on surfing.  So much so I might have well been a grom. Then again how could I not have been.  I was off from work not having to go back till mid August giving me ample time and freedom to make the most out of whatever was on offer.  We had some minor NW wind swell that decided to hang around for nearly the entire month giving us very surf-able waves in town.  Then throw in a  few little south swells with good conditions and a macker of a late season WNW that allowed me to surf waves I have not seen break in months.  Did I mention the water was in the high 60’s by mid month and there was almost no fog and nice warm sunny days.

Conditions had me wondering if I was still living in the 805.  I don’t know if this is a direct effect of global warming or what, but hey lets keep it coming.  I actually went out and bought a 3/2.  I have not worn a 3/2 out here since the very first summer I moved here six years ago.  That was when I was fresh off the plane and my blood still thick.  May is usually an ok month thanks to plenty of combo action.  As you can see from the numbers I think I more then utilized it.  As always you can read my month in surfing in depth and my life for that matter in the surflog, which by the way is updated daily.

Surf Sessions: 29
Days Surfed: 21

Total Water Time: 48.5 hours
Number of Waves Surfed: 916
Average Waves Surfed Per Hour: 19

Spots Surfed:
Mesa Lane: 10
Emma Wood: 7
New Jetty: 3
Santa Clara River Mouth: 3
Summerland: 2
Rincon: 2
Zeros, Malibu: 1
Sharks Cove: 1

Top 3 Surf Sessions

35-1-13 AM Session: 4-6+ft, Santa Clara River Mouth
Time in Water: 3.5hrs
Waves Surfed: 45
Another solid day of surfing, what a run.  That’s it I am claiming it: Summer 2013 is going to be on.  I got on the dune around  9 or so and all I could see were left peaks everywhere.  It was not super hallow but the ones that did throw out were spitting.  I ran down to the south end of the reeds and got a few only to realize the drift was absolutely horrid and the better peaks way up the beach towards Mc Grath.  Ryan and I got out and walked to the south end of the river mouth, which at the moment is as wide as I have ever seen it.  It wouldn’t take much more water with the right tide to break that through.  At the moment the sand is really good so hopefully it won’t happen till we need it.  Trevor met up with us on the walk and we found a very appealing peak in front of  this giant log.  Right off the bat I snagged a huge deep barrel that I got spit right out of.  From there it was on.  The current was so bad though, since the angle of the swell was so steep that it made more sense to just drift a few peaks then get out and walk back.  I ended up doing like five drifts finding tons of good ones.  Got my share of beatings too.  When I got out of the water I was exhausted.  I wanted to hang around for another session but I had to run back up to Santa Barbara to pay my rent.  May run for a evening session up at Indicator time and wind depending.

25-31-13 PM Session 2: 2-4+ft, Sharks Cove
Time in Water: 1.5hrs
Waves Surfed: 37
The plan was to go back to Rincon for the last hour of light.  As I was driving over the hill I did the look back of death and noticed that Sharks had a wave and there were a handful of guys out.  I love Sharks.  Its my third favorite wave here next to El Cap and Sand Bar, but with half the crowd and hassle.  I turned around and on a second drive by confirmed it was good.  I parked and made the terrible rock dance walk to the point.  Damn winter swells removing all the sand away.  When I got there I saw nothing but perfect chest to head high grinders going down the point.  I was so stoked.  I got out there and just frothed.  I was like a kid in a candy store.  Sharks when its on breaks like a small version of Nias.  I ended up surfing till dark.  Stuck a money bs air reverse, and just had an amazing all around surf.  What an amazing day of surfing.  If I had gotten hit by a bus on the way home I would have died a happy man.

15-31-13 PM Session: 4-6+ft, Rincon
Time in Water: 2hrs
Waves Surfed: 21
I woke up late thanks to a night in fancy town with Bizzaro at the Wild Cat.  Upon checking the buoys it looked as though the points were to have a wave.  I was figuring with the low tide I would just grovel something at Rincon or Pitas and then get a high tide session at the lane.  I pulled into the lot and it was full.  There were no spaces to be had in the front lot. The back lot was empty so I just decided to paddle. How bad could it be if the lot was full.  When I got down to the point I almost died.  It was solid.  I am talking winter time good.  Tons of perfect lines wrapping in everywhere. There were barrels all over the point although the best ones focused up in the River Mouth section. I did six drifts and in each one caught a wave from Indy to mid Cove, then Cove to call box.  I can’t remember the last time I call boxed a wave.  I was in sync too. Probably surfed a near flawless game.  I had to get out of the water by two because I had an interview with the well fare office about my food stamps.   Rincon on the last day of may and real Rincon that shit is absurd.  May have been the best session I have had since Pitas back in March (see March ’13 of the Surflog, 3-7-13 session). I also ran into Jenks charger Dalton Johnson who’s mind was being blown by his first Rincon session ever.

Sand Bar may have laid dormant for me this season. Here is hoping for next winter...

Sand Bar may have laid dormant for me this season. Here is hoping for next winter…

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What can I say about the month of April for surfing other then it was yet another month full of let down and frustration.  After a terrible winter I still had a shred of hope that it might be a good wind swell season.  Sometimes I get my best waves in the hard gail force north westerlies.  Wind swell with its shorter period allows certain mysto or novelty spots to come alive for a brief moment.  There are literally dozens of spots up here that only break once or twice a year if at all.  When they do break it is always a treat to surf them.  Of course this year with the exception of one very weak ass surf at Summerland Beach there were none of the above mentioned sessions.

I did my best to stay wet sandwiching in surf time between my work and hectic party schedule.  Here is the month of April by the numbers.  Enjoy my very sick OCD.  As always visit the Surf Log daily for the full scoop on my surfing, party and life in general.

Surf Sessions: 17
Days Surfed: 16

Total Time Spent in Water: 27.5hrs
Waves Surfed: 474
Average Waves Caught Per Hour: 17

Spots Surfed:
Rincon: 4
Santa Clara River Mouth: 4
New Jetty: 3
Emma Wood: 3
Summerland: 1
Cstreet: 1
Pitas: 1

Top 3 Surf Sessions:

3) 4-18-13 AM Session: 2-4+ft, Santa Clara River Mouth
Time in Water: 1.5hrs
Waves Surfed: 24
River Mouth fucking delivered!  What a barrel fest.  I got the call from my boy Ryan at around 7:30 that the wind was off shore down south.  With some small south and fading NW in the water the combo action was just screaming beach breaks. Throw in a lower tide and things were finally looking up.  I got to River Mouth and it looked a little smaller then I was hoping. The sand bars were as I had expected a bit torn up from all the wind the past week.  Still there were some solid chest to head high pits to be had.  There were plenty of guys out, but plenty of peaks spread up and down the beach.  I suited up and was stoked for some fun waves.  I started at the north end of the reeds where I found a sick little left sand bar that was hallow as hell.   I picked off three really fun ones there before running further down the beach where conditions seemed a bit larger and more heavy.  My boy Ryan was sitting on a suck up little A-frame all to himself and I joined.  We traded some good ones although the current was a bit tricky with strange rips and it was a bit lully. None the less I went to work super pumped that morning.

2) 4-12-13 AM Session: 2-4+ft, Rincon
Time in Water: 1hr 45 mins
Waves Surfed: 23
I don’t know what came over me that got me out of bed before 9am but somehow I was up and ready to surf.  I had checked the buoys the night before and noticed a real jump in the swell.  As I was cruising down south I saw that Santa Claus had some waves indicating a possible wave at Rincon.  I pulled off and sure enough the Cove was going off with a very light crowd.  I ran back up to the lot, texted Trevor that he was blowing it and paddled.  What a session.  I can’t remember the last time I had that much fun.  There were at least a handful that went to the high way.  My legs were killing me by the end of the session.

3) 4-30-13 AM Session: 4-6+ft, Santa Clara River Mouth
Time in Water: 3hrs
Waves Surfed: 53
What a fucking session.  Man I am so glad it is finally south swell season and I have a feeling the summer may just make up for the dismal winter we got stuck with.  I slept in a little bit being still a tired from the weekend festivities.  Trevor and I met up in Carp and rolled south with the intentions of checking the River Mouth and if that was sub par possibly running to Malibu.  On first inspection although plenty of size things looked a bit walled with the occasional scattered corner.  We gave The Shores a look over at Fifth St, that was looking more organized but a bit on the weak side.  The debate was then River Mouth or the ‘Bu. I hate driving away from potential thus we suited and charged the Mouth.  As it turned out it was a very good decision with tons of really good left and right corners.  I had some cherry ones and I stuck  the biggest full rotation ally oop of my life.  What a session.

Since the surf sucked and I spent more time at the club then in the ocean here is a picture of my crew and I traveling down the road to Fancy Town.
Cat Party

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December has with absolutely no contest become my favorite month of the year.  As a surfer one would consider such a comment rather absurd.  The days are the shortest of the year, air and water some of the coldest.  Here in Santa Barbara it is one of the more consistent months with usually good conditions, even in this the shittiest of winters ever.  For me it means over half the month not having to work allowing me to remember what it was like back in the old days when there was always time to find the best possible spot with the best possible conditions any day any time.

The smash and grab short sessions I am usually afforded courtesy of the rat race, although nourishing barely fulfill the daily/weekly does of stoke it takes me to get through this drudgery that is life.  It is very refreshing to have that luxury for over 15 days ever December to be able to just kick back and surf.  There were some key days this months.  Rincon dished up over a week of epic conditions mid month that left my legs hurting so bad by the end of it I was walking cowboy style.  The beach breaks decided to remind me just how deep I could ride the tube thanks to hard offshore winds and some really good sand bars. Even town managed to serve up a day or two.  Here are how the numbers panned out.

Surf Sessions: 27
Days Surfed: 25

Total Time Spent in the Water: 48.5 hrs
Waves Surfed: 740
Average Waves per Hour: 15

Spots Surfed:
Rincon: 7
New Jetty: 6
Emma Wood: 6
Mesa Lane: 3
Hollywood by the Sea: 2
Hammonds: 2
Silver Strand: 1

Top 3 Sessions (as per the Surflog)

3)12/22/12 PM Session: 3-5+ft, Rincon
Time in Water: 2hrs
Waves Surfed: 16
Wow I went to fucking fancy town last night.  Too much booze, too much party and a bit too much gnar for one night if you ask me.  Pat and I woke up at around 1pm all fucked up and hung over with little if any recollection of what happened. We got some breaky at Garrett’s since neither of us were in any condition to surf at that moment. Also it was cold, rainy and there appeared to be a SE wind plaguing things anyhow.  After a fine repast we got our act together and cruised to Rincon where it was mother fucking firing.  Things had glassed off.  The lines were perfect and there were barrels everywhere.  I had about six waves through the cove that could have been the waves of other’s lives, as for me it was just another perfect day at Rincon.  I got one in the cove where I was in the barrel for nearly the entire ride.  Had to easily be a ten second plus tube.  Sooooooooooooooooooo Goooooooooooooooooooooooood.   Now its time for Round three at the Wild Cat.

2)12/16/12 PM Session: 2-3+ft, New Jetty
Time in Water: 2hrs
Waves Surfed: 54
What a surf…See blog “We Certainly Could Have a Worse Lot in Life

1)12/29/12 PM Session: 5-7+ft, Hollywood by the Sea
Time in Water: 2hrs 15mins
Waves Surfed: 25
I woke up on my couch yet again with a pile of crumpled up tortilla chips all over me around 8am.  Another failed night at the Cat.  Failure?  I think not. All my friends were there, my favorite bar tenders were working.  I had a hell of a time.  I looked out my window and the wind was onshore and the tide super high.  Awesome I could sleep in.  By noon a slew of calls started coming in about how the wind was off shore in Oxnard.  Hollywood had some good sand the previous day so I figured I would just go there.  Trevor and I rolled down there and it was fucking firing although a bit inconsistent.  Just head high plus barrels every where with virtually no crowd.  My boy Ryan was surfing at Orange House and we joined him.  From there it was on.  I got a triple barrel on one wave and had some crazy deep ones.  Then this freak set of like 15 10 foot waves came in and cleaned us all up.  I was pushed all the way back to the beach then the reverse rip was so bad I almost thought I was not going to make it back to the line up.  Besides that it was a pretty unreal session.  I told my boys “now if I can only get laid at the bar tonight this may be one of the best days of my life”.

December was one big speed blur of surfing, kind of like this frame grab from Silver Strand.

December was one big speed blur of surfing, kind of like this frame grab from Silver Strand.

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Silver Strand

I awoke to the blaring ring of my cell phone.  It was pouring raining outside and cold as all fuck, add a hangover from the night before’s festivities and I was in no rush to get out of bed.  I looked at my clock and it was noon.  Man did I have a headache.  I picked up the phone and it was my boy and new surfing buddy Trevor.  “I definitely want to surf today” he said.  Yesterday we were suppose to surf but he bailed because he was too hung over and may actually have been slipped a ruffie.   Ah yes the things a  woman will do to a man.

Turns out this chick he was seeing broke it off with him Friday so he went out on a bender.  Had I not been so hammered myself Friday engrossed in my own party I most likely would have ran into him on the scene.  “Its pretty small I think, but I am down to grovel.  Give me a few hours and we will role.” I replied. I got on my computer to see what was in store for us.  All models and cams pointed to complete flatness.  I thought about running north and risking becoming dinner at Surf Beach or Guadeloupe then reconsidered.  That last shark attack up there was just a little to close to home for me.

My life is finally picking up for me, the last thing I want to do is go out by a shark.   Also I really want to make it to the 21st.  I mean if the world is going to end I really want to be there for it.  I hope its not lame.  I don’t care how it goes down as long as it is really cool.  Maybe no zombies.  I don’t want to have to deal with that mess.  Truthfully I am kind of hoping for a biblical judgement day apocolysp like in “Little Nicky”.   I don’t think Ozzie will be able to  save us this time though.

I figured we could just cruise to Ventura Harbor.  In the winter there is always something to surf there.  I got out of bed all dizzy and dehydrated.  Went in my bathroom and was greeted with the remnants of coke all over the counter top.  Last night at my after party some black chick locked herself in the bathroom and proceeded to blow like a gram in there. It took us a half hour to get her out.  Other then that I would say the party was pretty decent.  Everyone brought booze, Griff and Bizarro brought a Pizza. It was a good time.  Upon leaving at the end of the night this dude who had come with some other guests shook my hand and said “I really want to thank you for having us over we had really fun time”.  I though how nice and well mannered.

In all the years and all the parties I have thrown I don’t think anyone said thank you upon leaving.  Its good to know there are still some decent people out there.  I mean sure that guy is probably a serial killer or pedophile rapist, but hey at least he is well mannered.  “Please sir forgive me, I must kill you now, sorry”.  Everyone even pitched in gathering all the glasses and trash so that when I woke up my apartment looked pretty good.

I downed my usual 9000 milligrams of ibuprofen for the headache, ate a meager breakfast, did my regular internet routine of surfline, facebook, surfingruinedmylife (yes I am that vain, like you other wordpress bloggers don’t check your blog every time you log onto the net) and my email.  I looked at the cam for C Street one more time and it looked pathetic.  Over it I decided to curl up on the couch with Alfie and a good book. Then I got a text from Trevor that he wanted to hit it.  I had nothing better to do and he really wanted to surf.  I am not one to rob someone of a therapeutic surf session.

We cruised down south toward Ventura and it was literally flat every where on the way down.  Even all the indicator spots that allow one to make an inference on what the surf will be like were completely flat.  Most times when I see that I just turn around to save the gas.  We were on a mission, a retard mission to surf knee high junk in the cold and rain (ok, by Jersey standards it was not that cold at all considering the air was still in the mid fifties and the water in the high fifties, but at this point I am a spoiled Californian.).  Even C Street was flat and there is a ride-able wave there nearly 365 days a year. It maybe a bad wave but surf-able.

Trevor kept saying he needed to surf so on we went.  At the harbor the wind was at least straight offshore.  It may be small but at least it would be clean.  Upon checking it there were about a dozen other intrepid souls out there and the surf  was solid chest to head high with clean peaky little tubes every where.  It was another New Jetty miracle.  Astounded, we were on it and out there like a bat out of hell.  From there it was barrel after barrel.  The crowd was mellow and most were sitting on the middle peak leaving the jetty peak for us.

I was on too.  Stuck a huge clean full rotation back side air reverse, a full rotation frontside ally-oop and the barrels, fuck, the barrels.  Trevor actually opened up with the first tube of the session then we were just trading pits.  I even managed a double barrel on one.  Everyone out was hooting.  I had one left where I was standing there in the pit looking out watching this guy on the same wave about 100 yards from me going right standing in the tube.  We looked at each other and started hooting.  He pulled out and I boosted the end section.  On the way back out we slapped each other five.  There was so much stoke out there.

The clouds and lighting as the sun was going down was amazing.  The mountains were all green with an eerie front light from the setting sun refracting off the grey clouds and some had there tops hugged by these strange wispy clouds.  It looked like something out of a fantasy movie.  If it was not for the town of Ventura in the foreground I would have thought I was back in New Zealand.  Then the moon popped out of the clouds and was just this perfect little sliver sliver of light.

I looked at Trevor who was on his way back out from a sick little right hand tube and said “We certainly could have a worse lot in life”.  He looked a me and smiled then told me about how in church this morning Al Merrick’s son Britt Merrick announced that his 9 year old daughter was dying with very little time left from cancer.  He said the whole church was just crying.  Its a real shame.  I too had recently gotten similar news about someone close to me in my own life.  Then I thought of all those poor people in Connecticut both those killed in the shootings and their surviving families.

Life is so short and precious.  Here we were two young healthy men drinking ourselves to death for no good reason.  For that moment in the ocean surrounded by all the beauty and power of the world around us we could not ask for anything more.  “Everyone dies. Not everyone truly lives”.  All we can ask of ourselves is to use the time we are given here on Earth in the best manner possible.   I know for me personally I have made many changes to my life over the past few years to do just that.  I still have a long way to go.  Rome was not built in a day after all.

I don’t the answers to life’s big questions. All I know is that we must live and for me life has always been surfing.  As of late that is where I have been focusing my time and energy.  I have also been focusing more on my music again cause that has been a source for me for as long as I can remember as well.  My number could be up at any moment and all I know is that I want to have as many moments like the one I had this evening as I possibly can.

Frame grab from some really terrible Silver Strand this past Tuesday.  Read more in the Surflog.

Frame grab from some really terrible Silver Strand this past Tuesday. Read more in the Surflog.

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