10 February 2015

Surf Check

The swell is overhead everywhere now but Surfline reported this morning's conditions as poor and called it "solid but sloppy." I really wanted to surf though, so I biked along the beach to see the sea in person.
Crystal Pier
Law Street
Looking south to Crystal Pier from PB Point
PB Point 
Sewers and Birdrock
It looked disorganized all along my route, with a football-field length of whitewater to traverse to the outside. I saw a few guys getting rides and almost as many eating it dramatically, their boards flung high in the air above the churning ocean.

The exception - although not by much - was Pacific Beach Point. It had enough potential that after riding on to check Calumet Park in La Jolla, I stopped to consider it again. Still, I was unconvinced, and decided to watch for a few minutes more; if I saw a wave I could ride, then I'd go home and get my surfboard. That wave came almost as soon as I'd had the thought, offering up a nice shoulder to a shortboarder.

On the return trip, suited up and with Rocket alongside in my bike rack, I waited to cross Mission Boulevard to the beach. A guy on the sidewalk sized me up. "You're gonna charge it, huh?" Yep!

Back at the PB Point overlook, a dude commented on the sloppy swell. When I asked him if he was going out, he said, "Nah, I'm just going to stand here and talk shit about it." Ha. Then, since I told him it was my first time surfing the Point, he offered me tips on where to paddle out and back in. I could pretty much see the channel anyway, but it was good to learn the reference rocks.

The channel didn't extend all the way to the lineup, and two-thirds of the way out I turned to catch a right that was just breaking. The fun ride to the inside unfortunately landed me in that football field of whitewater. Current plus ineffectual duck-dives of my floaty 6'2"added up to little forward progress and tiring arms - I still haven't gotten my strength back after being sick for weeks - so I made my way back to the channel and paddled hard until I made it all the way outside. Well, to the shortboard section anyway; there were longboarders and a SUPer even farther out. From there I caught an overhead left, rampy and fast, that put a grin on my face. Yay for big waves!

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