A while back we did a fun post called “The Best Days Aren’t Always the Best Days“; it was all about the fun you have on tiny days goofing around with your friends. You know the kind of days where no one is battle paddling, everyone is just out to have a good time. No death drops, no swallowed by a close out, no stress… just good old fashioned funtimes in the sun.
These past three days here in SoCal have been anything but small! They have been chock full of pumping surf. The kind that makes you catch your breath when you make it over that last monster to clear to the outside. The kind where the whitewater is head high. The kind that makes you drag out putting on your wetsuit, hoping it might mellow a little in that extra five minutes. But, it is also the kind that makes you feel like a kid at Christmas when you see it. The kind that makes you mentally plot out how much you are going to rip. The kind that makes you start texting your friends at 6:30am asking where they are going out. I caught up with a couple surfers and got the low down on this swell and kept the question simple: Did you have fun?
Driving into Sano early Monday morning I ran into Troy who had just gotten out of the water.
He had surfed all weekend, even in the high winds on Sunday. He was pumped! He had gotten choice waves all morning with late drops and very few people out. Sunday was his favorite day, settling into a spot in North San Clemente he was semi-sheltered from the wind and surfed solo most of the day. I asked him he had fun, and he kept his answer simple. “I had fun because it was big.”
I SUP surfed with Colin and Brad early on Monday; neither of them had gotten on any of the swell, yet. Colin had missed Saturday due to heading over to Catalina for a race that got called off because of the crazy weather. Brad went down Sunday, but didn’t get in because all of us who just gotten out of the insanely bumpy choppy water, talked him right out of his wetsuit and back into his truck.
We had loads of fun; mainly watching Colin be ridiculous. There is a decided difference between the way he surfs and the way the rest of us surf, no matter the size or shape of the wave. In other words, when he does it, that is the way it’s supposed to look… fluid and smooth. Last time I checked in with Colin on Monday, he had a smile wrapped around his head and he was on his way to shortboard Middles. Needless to say, he had fun.
Before we get into the “did we have fun” part for Brad and I; I have to give my pal Brad props. We both paddled for the same bomb, him being in the sweet spot, prime to drop in, when he gave me the nod and let me take it… I dropped into what is now on my top five favorite waves I have gotten! Thanks Brad! Anyway… we both had a wild time. Me getting pummeled on my way back out after each wave I got, and Brad killing it at the Plant. Somehow on big days, the beatings are kind of fun.. as long as they don’t last too long and you leave the water with all your parts in place, they get your heart going in a good way.
No blog about surf that I write is ever complete until I get a word from Tara Franz. I asked Tara how Creek was yesterday, and she had this to say: “I don’t even know what you are talking about, you know I don’t surf. I just stand with a board in my hand in the parking lot so I look cool… I’ve never even been in the water…” haha! Tara peppered Creek with skill yesterday, like she always does. She finally relented and gave me the scoop.. “It’s fun on big days, the paddle out is so scary that when you finally make it, you’re stoked… until you have to take one… haha!”
I’ll leave the final word on the fun of the big swell to Mitch Kahn and Rob Pelkey… “What big waves, we were out there for 2 hours and didn’t get our hair wet.” Watermen… only the real kind can make a straight faced claim like that… the rest of us are just Waterenthusiasts, but that is a blog for a different day.