Archive for March, 2008

Mar 11 2008

Summer comes to SoCal!

Published by under Destinations,General Surf

75 degree and sunny days. Lights winds all day, and mixed Southwest and Northwest swell. Breakbreaks all over SoCal are firing! Feels like summer! The surf has been peaky and good all week at Manhattan Beach (it really does take a combo swell for the place to get good and peaky), and looks like it going to stay that way for at least a couple of days. Winter turns right into summer.

Manhattan Beach Sunset

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Mar 10 2008

Top 5 Recent Surf Videos

Published by under Big wave,Lifestyle,Travel,Videos

Here are my top videos of the past couple years. Any others you guys think deserve mention?

Movie: My Eyes Won’t Dry 2

It’s safe to say that the surfer, Brian Conley, lives the life. He gets paid by his sponsor Oakley to travel the world and surf the best, most perfect waves. That’s his actual contract right there. A couple years ago he released “My Eyes Won’t Dry.” The footage is primarily video footage taken from inside the barrel. Any great movie, deserves a sequel. Brian surfs Indo, Mexico, Australian and generally the best barrels in the world and films them from his board. The effect is mesmerizing. The dub soundtrack, however, may take the sober-ear some getting used to.

Click here to buy My Eyes Won’t Dry 2 from Amazon.

Brian Conley BarrelFest – Click to Play

Click to Play | View Details

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Mar 10 2008

Top 5 Waves You’ll Never Surf (and for good reason)

Everyone’s got their must-surf wave list. It might include: Uluwatu, Malibu, Pavones, G-Land, Trestles, etc. Long, perfect waves, that barrel. There are a few of us out there, that are determined to push the limits a bit and try to grab a barrel at a spot like Pipeline, Deserts, or Lance’s. But I think we’re in the minority of surfers. Then there are the psycho chargers that don’t ever seem to be afraid and come up laughing after getting caught inside on a big set. Everyone knows a few. Here’s a list of some of the mutant waves in the world that some nutbags saw from a bluff or cliff or boat and thought… “hmmm. I bet I can score a few good ones there.” I’ve excluded big wave spots like Mavericks, Jaws, Dungeons, etc.


One word to describe this wave: mutant. This wave just inverts on itself. I doubt there’s really any sort of take off zone at all. The only video I could find was of a few bodyboarders charging it.

[youtube ahiZ9xFCjkI]

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Mar 07 2008

Top 5 Places to Watch Insanely Big Surf

Surfers don’t often think of themselves as spectators, especially when the surf’s good, you’re going to go surf. It’s why I would make a crappy surf photographer. I’d rather be out there surfing. Still we all appreciate watching a good wave, here’s a collection of the biggest and most impressive. Surprisingly, they’re all very accessible and worth the trip. When I was living in San Francisco, I saw Maverick’s break a few times and watched the 2006 Mavericks contest from the bluff.

Where: Jaws, Maui, Hawaii

Why: Jaws is the polished, blue water, sunny big wave with the claim to the heaviest and biggest in the world. Because of the size and speed of the waves it is almost exclusively a tow-surfing spot. But the tow surfing allows surfers to exploit the wave to its fullest, pulling giant carves of 50 ft faces and pulling into 20 ft. barrels. Beauty can be deceptive, Jaws and Mavericks rival each other in degree of heaviness with many surfers claiming Jaws takes the title. The wave is similar to Mavericks in that it breaks close to a mile offshore. There’s a high over-looking bluff to watch from.

When: Winter. The same giant swell that pound the California coast, generally hit Hawaii first in their march across the Pacific.

[youtube 8yX_uVQ9OKA]

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Mar 05 2008

Kiting Mavericks?!

Published by under Big wave

No matter how extreme you think you are, there’s always some psycho who will step it up just a bit further. Here’s some video of the first guys to kite Mavericks this past October. For those of you who don’t know what Mavericks is, it’s a 50 ft. wave that breaks 1 mile out in 45 degree cold, dark, sharky Northern California waters. Oh yeah, chargers from all over the world line up for the opportunity to surf it.
[youtube f0n9ACA0gro]

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Mar 05 2008

River surfing. Would you go?

Published by under Destinations,Travel

River surfing opens up a whole new range of possibilities. Standing waves can go forever, and there are some that are stand-up barrels. OK, maybe there’s one that’s a stand-up barrel and when you fall you get throw down a class IV rapid. There are tons of smaller manageable river waves around the world that the landlocked surfers charge.

Here’s a video of Elijah Mack surfing a spot called Skookumchuck Narrows in British Columbia. The first wave looks fun, the second wave, named: “Tubesteak” looks suicidal. Elijah tows in Tubesteak and gets rescued by the boat after he falls before getting washed into a massive whirlpool.

I don’t think they’re going to have worry about crowds up there anytime soon. Any takers?

[youtube sB2e_-ZXb_k]

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Mar 05 2008

Shark Shield fails spectacularly. Leaves our shark worry-free sessions in doubt.

Published by under Gear,Sharks,Surfboards


We’ve all had shark fears in the water. For $645, the Shark Shield promised us a future of worry-free surf sessions and explorations of waves and coasts no one would consider surfing now. The term “Sharky” would be a term of the past. Well, don’t hold your breath.

Turns outs one of the Shark Shields was eaten whole by a female great white in testing off South Africa. Shark Shield Test

Who hasn’t had shark jitters in the water while surfing? I was surfing Manhattan Beach last September during an epic combo swell right after Labor Day where the water was warm and amazingly clear when a shark swm right underneath me. I saw the shape, looked down and it saw right below me, turned slowly around in front of me and swam back underneath me. It was at last 5 feet (it honestly looked a lot bigger than that, but no one would be believe if I told them that I bumped fins with an 8 or 10 ft white shark at Manhattan Beach). Needless to say, I paddled straight in. I shouted to the guy 20 yards away from me, who that I was a kook. As I looked back over my shoulder, I saw its dorsal fin above the water heading away from me. I never expected to see my first shark surfing in SoCal especially after surfing San Francisco and NorCal for 10 years!

I know I’ve got a list of spots I’d want to paddle out to, where would you surf if you could have a shark repelling device guaranteed to work?

[via UberReview]

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Mar 04 2008

Surf Mexico. Surfing Ixtapa/Zihuatenajo for cheap. $300 RT flight from LA.

Published by under Destinations,Travel

Ixtapa Surf

I just booked a flight for April from Los Angeles (LAX) to Zihuatenajo (ZIH) for $316 round trip! It’s a 10 day trip, I’ll be exploring the breaks in the Ixtapa/Zihuatenajo area including: Playa Linda, La Saladita, the Ranch, Mahajua, Troncones, Playa Manzanillo, Escolleras, Juluchuca, La Barrita and Las Gatas, all within an hours drive of Zihuatanejo and Ixtapa. Flights from San Francisco were similar price, and flights from New York were around $500.

Guerrero is well known for it’s beautiful beaches and good surf. Ixtapa is not exactly Cancun for the party scene, but there are supposed to be some fun bars and clubs. Here’s a more in depth description of the waves in Guerrero, Mexico. Surfing Guerrero

From what I’ve heard the area has excellent waves, with a variety of beach breaks and points, one exceptionally long.

Rental cars are around $10-20 a day as listed on Orbitz. Most of the waves are accessible without a 4×4, so we just rented a full sized car (not sure what that equates to in Mexico). There’s a variety of hotels and nightlife in Ixtapa. Manzanillo has two surf catered resorts: The Troncones Surf Club, and the Inn at Manzanillo Bay. Both are recommended and offer surfboard rentals.


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