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Wednesday, December 10th, 2014

Before the OTHER winter storm


Surf: 11.2 ft at 17.4 s from the WNW at 293°

Yay for rain! These winter storms have been slowly chipping away at our drought. It’s great for the water table, not great for water quality. It was pretty lucky to have both my shoulder stamina and a window from the line to line up.

Pretty fun waves out there, too. Really, it was nice just to get up, get going, and catch a few waves. I had fun swooshing around, did a little shuffling up, and mostly avoided getting knocked around until the very last wave. I’d forgotten what it was like to sit in my favorite corner of the beach watching the huge mountains of water roll by out at sea. Wow.

You could see the clouds shifting out over the ocean too. The storm coming should be a pretty good one!

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Friday, November 28th, 2014

Before the Winter Storm


Surf: 6.9 ft at 14.8 s from the WNW at 290°. Incoming.

Day three of “whatever, shoulders, I’m gonna paddle”

Feeling more sore today. Opted for one side of the beach, hoping for a shorter paddle, but the slosh and the crowd was too much. Managed to get my leash wrapped around my hand trying to keep the board close after a closeout in the crowd. Oww. Upside was it worked, downside is I’ll have an awesomely black middle finger for a week. Rawr.

The other side was much more my speed and paddling to there from the first side didn’t put me any more into the red. Waves were lumpy but every now and then one really lined up. After a few of those, my shoulders were worn out. Got some lunch in Stinson and headed back over the mountains to a beautiful show of clouds over the ocean.

Oh! And a guy in the lot recognized Chris’s Stan Fujii. It used to be his. Pretty neat to find a used board’s former owner. :)

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Thursday, November 27th, 2014

Thanksgiving Closeouts



Surf: 2.6 ft at 12.1 s from the W at 277°

Paddled back out for some pre-feast exercise. Still closed out, but with a wave or two in the mix. The good news is yesterday’s paddle out didn’t make my neck any worse, sadly it still hurts. Aches and pains aside, the sun was beautiful, the water wasn’t super cold, and I watched Chris get a great long wave, dodging all the sections, traffic, and weird warbles. Good pre-stuffing stuff.

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Wednesday, November 26th, 2014




Surf: 5.3 ft at 12.9 s from the WNW at 285°. Low and incoming.

I had a bit of a setback in physical therapy progress over the weekend. Saturday I spent about 45 minutes or so drawing, went about my day, went to sleep at a normal time and, when I woke up Sunday, I couldn’t sit up to get out of bed. Arg. It’s frustrating. I was making good progress, but now I feel like I’m back near the starting line. Driving to PT on Tuesday, I passed a couple cars loaded up with boards and thought, well, I guess this is just going to hurt, wether I baby it or not.

Of course, when I was thinking “Screw it, I’ll just paddle out” I was still hoping the waves would be gentle and not teeth rattling closeouts, but ahh well. The little waves stayed open and were actually a little fun, but everything else was a rough ride straight down. I saw someone buckle their soft top! Yeesh.

But hey, sun was out, got wet, and got a donut.

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Sunday, November 9th, 2014

Too high tide


Surf: 5.3 ft at 10.0 s from the W at 280°. High tide.

After the weeks’s success on a shorter board, I was both excited to get back out, but also hoping to take it a little easy. My shoulders were a bit sore and I didn’t want to push them too far. Sadly the surf did not cooperate. The tide was very high and the shorebreak was a sloshing mess. About halfway out I was feeling that sharp pain in my neck again so I turned around and bellied in.

It was disappointing, sure, but I did get some swim time in.

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Friday, November 7th, 2014

More hull


Surf: 4.6 ft at 10.8 s from the W at 273°

Experiment, part 2. After surfing my face off yesterday, I decided to push my luck and try the hull again. The waves were a little messier and much more grey, but the first wave I got was worth paddling out for. Wow was that a good one. Good size, the hull did all it’s hull magic and rubber-banded it’s way through turn after turn. I even nailed a kickout, whee.

Fun morning. I was a bit sore after, that might have been a little too much hull-time, but hopefully it’s a sign of improvement. I really want to get back out and get surfing again!

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Thursday, November 6th, 2014

Hull experiment


Surf: 3.9 ft at 13.8 s from the WNW at 283°

My physical therapy has been going pretty well. I decided to run a little experiment and see if I could take out one of my shorter boards without totally throwing my neck out. Past attempts at anything shorter than 9′ had me laid up in bed after so, in addition to the likelyhood that I wouldn’t catch any waves, this was a risky proposition.

Thankfully they waves were very forgiving. Hardly a duck dive needed. :)

And surprisingly enough, I got waves! It was like I hadn’t even put that board down. The tide was in just the right swing that there were plenty of fun fun rights. It was a little sketchy on the inside, but lots of fun swooshing turns before hitting that point. I eventually got back into the hang of kicking out on my little board (I kept stepping off.)

Nice morning!

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Wednesday, October 22nd, 2014

Sunny morning


Surf: 6.6 ft at 12.9 s from the WNW at 285°

So lovely to wake up in Santa Cruz and walk down to the water. My wetsuit was freezing cold and pretty wet from last night’s surf, but warmed up quick on the walk down.

Waves were much smaller today, with a few good sized ones here and there. The sun was out and, for the most part, people were super friendly and having a great time. I shared a wave with an older guy I see out there often. After he called me into the wave, I looked back to make sure there was enough room for both of us and saw he was crouched down inside the most pint-sized of barrels. Yeah! :D What a fun wave to share.

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Tuesday, October 21st, 2014

A key


Surf: 9.8 ft at 14.8 s from the WNW at 294°. Incoming tide.

After a very busy and very stressful run at work, I snuck off to an airbnb in Santa Cruz for a much needed getaway. In a rare stroke of luck, some sizable swell came in as well. My host happened to have a key to Privates and let me borrow it for the evening surf session. That is a lovely staircase and park.

The waves were pretty perfect for surfing that break, too. The waves had just started to glass off and the rides were really long and smooth. I’d gotten out a bit late and it got dark far too soon. I couldn’t resist watching the sunset over the water. My last wave was in almost complete darkness, which was fun and fast (I could see the even darker patches of kelp streaming along below.) I did have a bit of a moment when I realized I hadn’t been keeping track of where I was in relation to the stairs and now the tide was too high to walk along the beach till I found them. Thankfully it didn’t take too long to work it out. I kept looking for a shadow with a hard edge, anything different from the rough cliffs and trees.

Wrapped up with a nice dinner and a show. Perfect getaway!

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Saturday, October 11th, 2014

Terrible at Teaching



Surf: 4.9 ft at 14.8 s from the WSW at 258°. Incoming tide.

While I’m always supportive of anyone trying to learn to surf, I’m not the best surf teacher. My advice ranges from “paddle! keep paddling!” to “you ok? want to rest?” and not terribly much in between.

I took a few friends up to Bo. They’d both had lessons before and we’re interested in trying someplace with gentler waves. While happy not to be bashed by wave after wave, they weren’t super thrilled with the current into the lagoon. Now, this current has been a problem in past lessons, but never THIS much of a problem. There’s hardly any sand left on the lagoon side so the current was really whipping. One friend made it to shore relatively quickly but the other wasn’t making as much progress. In between yelling “paddle! keep paddling! paddle and then you can rest!” I also swam out to help get her back in.

After leaving them on the beach to test a slightly different spot (where I got a really fun wave on the rental cheese puff soft top) I decided maybe the patch would be better.

One friend was beat from the walk and the fight, but my other friend was able to get out and get some waves. With the exception of the shore break, things were pretty gentle. I’m not as comfortable swimming on this side, so I used the other board and yelled “paddle! more paddling!” behind her.

Next time I need a slightly better plan. Maybe we’ll go down to Cowells.

Post surf we went on a bit of a north bay adventure. Lunch at Lagunitas brewing and then a quick stop in the countryside. All around nice day.

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