March 31, 2006
wake up call

Wake up to the distant boom of crashing waves.
The villagers predicted the full moon would bring more swell.
Years watching buoy readings and reading blakestah.com engender a healthy skepticism toward the moon-swell causation.. but.. the sound doesn't lie.
The swell is up!
The moon is full.
Magic in the air.
You're a good 40 minute walk to the reef and it's still dark.
Chickens squawk and pigs grunt underneath the raised slat floor of the small thatched-roofed hut you and the Kiwi have been inhabiting these last few weeks.
This pig's name is Meta and your hosts claim he will be dinner in another week's time.
You rouse the Kiwi and tell him to listen.
He hears the tell-tale aquatic thunder and the two of you are out the door.
Grab board, rashy and leash.
Apply wax and sunscreen.
Begin trotting down the path.
Past the village and into the jungle.
Monkeys chatter and call from above.
Strange, colorful crabs dance out of the way.
Pick your way down a steep hillside.
Use exposed roots for hand-holds.
Whistle the whole time to warn would-be snakes of your approach.
The story goes that a surfer was bitten and killed here by a snake the year before, on this very trail.
Get to the bottom of the hillside where a small opening in the trees reveals a view of the wave.
HOLY MOTHER OF!!
A double-overhead set marches down the reef.
Parading majestically in symmetric perfection.
A week and a half of near flatness and now it's firing.
Now you're running full tilt.
Over the creek.
Passed the spider web area.
Along the little dirt trails that encircle the rice paddies.
Say hi to an early morning farmer.
Down to the beach.
Farking sprinting like frothing dogs along the beach.
Sand fleas biting but who gives a shit.
Finally make it to the entry spot.
Nobody around.
Pretty much guaranteed that nobody else will show up since you and the Kiwi are the only ones in the village.
There are no other villages around.
No surf charter boats in these waters.
No local surfers.
Just you and the Kiwi.
Paddle out and your stomach jumps into your throat.
It's fucking going richter.
Barrels!
Big ones!
Crack and smash and get serious right in front of your face as you paddle around to the takeoff spot.
Umm...
The set ends and it goes flat.
The two of you set up a bit wider than you think necessary.
No rush.
Ease your way into it.
Shoot the shit for a second...
Then the blips on the horizon.
The first wave approaches.
Collects at the head of the reef.
Builds... builds.. then...
Buckles and throws out this thick beastly lip.
Rifles down the line.
CRACK!! CCCRACK!!! BLAM!!! CLACK!
Don't take that first wave.
wait... wait..
But the second wave is just immaculate.
You're going.
A few paddles and the thing is more powerful than any wave you've felt in months.. years maybe.
Thick and mighty and reverential.
It steepens and sucks up and you're paddling like mad to get in.
Then you're in.
Up.
Looonnnnnnng assssssss droooppp.
Board-chattering bottom turn.
Then post yourself up for the view of views.
Extra long, meaty, tapering tropical blue wall of antarctic groundswell splayed out in front of you.
niceness.

Ridiculous photos by Mathew Jonston. Thanks for sending Matt!
niceness

niceness

niceness

niceness

niceness

niceness

photos from surfline.com
niceness

niceness

Posted by Ethan at 09:44 AM
March 30, 2006
Befunked Klesmer

Hey niceness folk,
Please try to be gracious and kind in your commenting. Bad vibes, even anonymously on the internet, bum people out. Lots of the old niceness guard get nervous before reading the comments because they anticipate anger and hatred. That's a bummer. Don't let the trolling suck you down. A frightening individual now wants to "kick my ass" after discovering this website and seeing all the negative posts directed at "locals." Please! if you have a problem with someone, go over in the afternoons and have a friendly chat with them. Or feel free to vent your frustrations on aggroville or the surfermag forum. At this point i'm basically taking heat for what random folk out there are saying on this site.

Sorry to be Jonny Buzzkill or something.

A hearty thanks to the majority of y'all who are strait super-chill good vibers and who's funny/random bullshitting help this cube-lackie make it through the day.

shred on.

e

Article about Pancho Sullivan

Will Henry photo

Rio (photos from surfline.com)

Marcus Sanders photo

Linda Mar reef this morning

Posted by Ethan at 09:59 AM
March 29, 2006
Myopic Borgs

New England autumnal hues.
Drop sis off at school then board the ferry.
Chilly, windy, crisp, sharp.
The briny salt aroma of a port-town.
Weather-worn fishing boats.
Squawking gulls.
High-haired tourists.
Red-sox caps.

The old man is waiting as you arrive.
Deeply tanned, grey beard, a life on the ocean.
Two generations have scoured the island for waves.
Generations before have plied the sea for sustenance.
Rocky reefs, sketchy points, close-out beachbreak.
Private roads, mythical sea-creatures, occasional psycho waves.
Exaggerated stories over lobster and beer.

The storm stalls hundreds of the miles to the southeast.
Surfers buzz.
After a quick hoagie, pops drives out to the dirt road with the painted rock.
His trusty 9'6" log strapped to the roof.
Your old thruster in the back.
This road deeply familiar.
You've been driving it since birth.
Even in your momma's belly.
Usually with the anticipation and anxiety of the impending session.
Brown-orange dust drifts up through the window.
The branches squeal and scrape against the side of the car.
The old, stone, farm fences lattice the land in geometric patterns.
The pet cemetary.
The old Branford house.
Pause to reflect on that one petrifying night at the Branford house.
Alone in the house.
Then not alone.
Then hiding in the basement.
Shaking with fear.
Whimpering..

but.. shit.. soon you round the last bend and pull off into the grass lot.
Look over the cliff to see head-high rights and lefts peeling along the rocky reef. Only a few folks out there.

Pops is amping. he hasn't burned since this same week the year before and whips out the cone he's carefully crafted while waiting for your ferry. The two of you hail shiva while taking in the lovely surroundings.

Posted by Ethan at 08:57 AM
March 28, 2006
Tectonic Flutter

Rain drenched New Guinean jungle trek.
Thatched-roofed huts and singing dogs.
Spirit houses and painted faces.
Monkeys shriek in the canopy above.

You and the aussie keep on pushing.
The legend of Wewak luring you onward.
Rifling Indo reef.
Not a soul for miles.
Super kind local villagers.
Technicolor prehistoric envelopment.

Darkness creeps in.
Your guide Goroka talks with some villagers.
Only a few miles to their huts.
Sit around the fire watching the Guineans weave their tales.
Unhappy ancestors wreaking vengeance.
Beautiful temptresses leading brave men to destruction.
Shrunken heads dangle from a bamboo doorway.
The white man cometh.
The white man goeth away.

niceness

niceness

shorty pic
niceness

Guess this California spot (Michael Kew photo)
niceness

Posted by Ethan at 09:07 AM
March 27, 2006
Chagrined chthonic

Cold consequential covert creepers.
Myriad munching maladjusted meat cleavers.

Floating in the drink with Lerminade.
Torrents on the head. Duckdive city.
A few largish sets.
A monster roars through.
Lerm hoots me into it.
My intuition says eeeehhh!
Glance over the ledge into oblivion.
Fat, doubling, tripping, lurching behemoth.
Lerm watches it munch and invert itself into a manic, squelching foam-spitter.
Chocolate thunder.
Vexed perplexity.
Booming, torturous caldron.
Spinning it's dance of death.

largest barrel in Germany

Paul Ferraris photo
niceness

a place on earth
niceness

from http://www.wavescapes.co.za



Posted by Ethan at 08:51 AM
March 23, 2006
Rippy McRipper

Mauritanian bedouin goat-herder.
Dusty land-cruiser bouncing over sand-strewn paths.
Sun-baked almond-bread sweetness.
Undisclosed equatorial desert points.

Wealthy prep-school friend plans a boat trip.
6 months around the Caribbean
anchor in Anguilla
live coral, turquoise-water solitude.

Talking with some folks in a cantina.
Late night tequila-infused niceties.
They suggest you meet them in the morning.
Pick up at 9, drive to the cliff-strewn overhang.
Look down below at the manic, gulping reef.

September hurricane bonanza.
Fly to Belize and take a bus hundreds of miles.
Hire a fisherman to take you to that coastal bend.
Score the once-a-decade rifling rights all day long.

Check out twsurf.com for rad photos by Michael Kew and others. They didn't appreciate me posting their stuff on here. Sorry about that dudes.

Posted by Ethan at 09:07 AM
March 22, 2006
Starched Velum

Bulbous beach-break bombs.
Heart-racing high-stakes drops.
Cold, grey, smooth, empty.
Silently groove through the session.

A friend comes into some money.
He flies the crew to the Maldives.
Three weeks of point-reef perfection.
The locals look on, amazed and distrustful.

Camping amongst prehistoric Douglas Firs.
Moss, ferns and dripping dankness.
Frogs croak in the night.
Mysto right-hander at the mouth of the stream.

Goa full-moon acid dance.
Israeli girl with sparkly eyes.
She a panther, you a cobra.
Predators soon intertwine.

Posted by Ethan at 09:33 AM
March 21, 2006
Galaxian Junta

Secret California reef break.
Just around the next corner.
Skipped work on a tip from a friend.
Driving, hiking, exploring, hoping.

Campfire ghost stories.
Coyotes forlorn howling.
Spirits of the dead arise.
Souls of the living take notice.

Hawaiian outer island catamaran.
Primordial polynesian star-scape.
Unfiltered Nor-Pac undulates.
Palm trees waft in the trade winds.

West African freedom riders.
Villages of mud.
Untamed Croc-lined rivermouths.
Unmapped cobblestone points.

Dan Merkel photos
niceness

niceness

niceness

niceness

Posted by Ethan at 08:49 AM
March 14, 2006
Hiatus from the daily report

Loping pre-dawn set wave.
Energy collecting at the take-off spot.
The thing is humping and wedging.
Scratch over the ledge.
Scratch under the ledge.
Freefall into oblivion.

E's surf report is going to take a little break from the daily updates. There will be a few interviews and a feature story coming soon so check back now and again. Thanks to all the positive folk who made the daily blog fun as hell. Life is sometimes rough in cubeville and y'all made it much easier. In a month or two things might come back to normal. We'll see what happens.

If anyone has leads on webmaster or journalistic work please kick me an email at e@niceness.org. I'm curious as to what's out there.

Peace!

e

Posted by Ethan at 08:52 AM
March 13, 2006
moody waves

Surf: Work your spots. Explore the coast. Know the crowd. Know the locals. Know the kooks. Know yourself. Take off deep. Charge charging chargeables. Express yourself. Let rippers rip. Don't clog the scene. Poke your head around corners. Vague is Vogue. Feels good to get wet.

Music: Rip Ripping Rippables. 5th mode of the harmonic minor is a ruling vibe. Now change the 7th to a major and you've got some bad-ass sounds. Now move the 4th up a half-step and you'll feel the weirdness. Build the triads. Funky intervals, huh? Or else shed the confines of theoretical lattices. Put the instrument down and look inside yourself. Find the melody within. Cultivate and nourish the inner melody. Bring it to the surface strong and true. Sing and vocal jam the inner melody. Then pick up the horn/guitar/mouth-harp/keys and let the melody scream out through the instrumental medium. Henry Kaiser last night at Bottom of the Hill. Anybody see it?

Ladies: "Relationships get ill." It's sometimes tough to keep it going. Compromises. Differing worldviews. Expectations. Style. Sex. Love. Who knows when it's meant to be. When to keep pushing. When to let it slide? It's nice to have that rock in your corner. Nice to have that voice of reason. Nice to have those beautiful green eyes. It is of our own making.

Humans: We're all apes.

Dogs: Gods among men.

Awesome video

Oregon Surf blog

Southern Hemi rightiousness (many photos by Andy Chisholm)

niceness

niceness

niceness

niceness

niceness

niceness

niceness

niceness

niceness

niceness

niceness

Posted by Ethan at 09:27 AM
March 10, 2006
Cold, churned, doable?

Shawn Griggs artwork
niceness

niceness

niceness

niceness

Posted by Ethan at 09:26 AM
March 09, 2006
Onshores.

A slap in the face reminder of what we have in store for the next six or seven months.
Frigid, brutal, laughable onshore winds raged in from the NorthWest this morning. I didn't see any surfing folk but i watched two separate women happily bathing in the 52 degree ocean. No joke. One women was in a bikini at 6:50 this morning, wading in the water. Splashing herself. Filling a plastic bucket with water and walking it to the beach, where she'd pour it over her shoulders and down her back. I kid you not. All very leisurely and relaxed like it was a summer day in the south of France. Meanwhile it's probably in the 40s out, hyper-mega onshores and freezing water. Go lady. Then this skinny, curly-haired women gets out of her car wearing some sort of short-sleeved bike-racer tight outfit and a surfing hood. She jogs down to the water with a "I'm trying to get warm" shuffle and then wades into about 2 feet of water. She stands there, bouncing on the ball of her feet and then dives into a little wall of white-water. As the white-water passes over she's basically laying on her belly in a foot of water and so pushes herself up. She waits for another wave and then does the dive --> pushup thing again. Crazy. After a few of those she bellysurfs some white-water and then shuffle/jocks back up to her car. People are great.

Rave: Juice magazine. Loving the issue i'm reading right now. The mag is basically filled with lengthy interviews by Jeff Ho and Jay Adams and other dog-town-esque people. It's mostly a skate mag but also has a lot of music and surf stuff. This issue has an awesome interview with Strider. He talks about how gnarly the Venice Beach Breakwater was back in the day. He talks about how popular crack and cocaine were in LA in the 80s and how his own brother went down hard to crack. "People got caught up in a lot of shit. I saw it happen to my brother, that's why i didn't get caught up in it. He would look at me like he didn't even know me. That's what happens when you smoke crack. You don't even know the people that you love. Then you steal from them. You do whatever you have to do. It was so heavy." Strider talks about how his dad got busted when he was three years old and his mom raised his brother and himself on food stamps while living in a ratty apartment right on the beach in Santa Monica. He then talks about the surf industry and how he made a name for himself and worked his way up. It makes for good reading if you like to read about surfing and surfers. There is also a really cool lengthy interview with the bass player from Pearl Jam, Jeff Ament. Turns out dude is a life-long skater who built these huge homemade halfpipes in his backyard in rural Montana back in the 70s. Jeff talks about the beginnings of grunge in Seattle and travelling the world in one of the biggest rock bands of our time. pretty sweet. there is also a billy idol interview that i haven't read yet.

anyhoo..

also.. gotta give a shout out to music. It's always there for me. It's alwasy giving back. I give. I push. I commit. But music gives back more than anything else i've ever experienced. When the waves are shit or when the body is injured or when the job sucks or love sucks or life sucks or i suck or sucking sucks or fucking fuck fuck i just pick up the guitar or sit down at the drum set and the world evaporates and this new world of pure, raw, ripe possibility opens up. Music is pure shred. Pure expression and emotion. When you surf for years and years and years you start to get little glimpses of bad-ass artistic outlay. Like maybe one turn in two weeks will be all tight and fluid and radical. But with music it's just right there. there is no medium to wait for or depend on. It's just right there for the plucking. You can create the most zany, unfettered, bald, freestyle expressions if you want to. Just tear it up. For you and you only. Nobody watching. Nobody listening. Just rip it out there. I love music.

My guitar heros:

Eddie Hazel

Sonny Sharrock

John Mclaughlin

Grant Green

Fred Frith

Nels Cline

Trey

Elliot Sharp

Marc Ribot

Kenny Burrell

Jimi

Zappa

Posted by Ethan at 10:21 AM
March 08, 2006
Demon of Lindy

Glen loved Lindy. Linda Mar that is. His parents moved from Galveston, TX to Pacifica in 1994 and Glen has been surfing like a fiend ever since. He lives up in Pedro, behind the old fire house. He can watch his beloved bay all the time, before and after school, all day during the weekend. He's always got an eye on it. What Glen particularly enjoys are the big storms that roll through. When it's stormy and wild and the San Pedro creek is running strong, that's when Linda Mar turns on its game face in Glen's opinion. But this year something has shifted, something is not quite right. Glen spent most of January pulling into chocolate shake-like shacks in the murky boat-docks storm runoff. He learned to love the acrid, chemical taste of poo water in his mouth after a healthy smattering of brown-room closeouts. By mid-February Glen began noticing a few subtle but disturbing changes to his body. A few boils began appearing at the tops of his legs. His fingernails turned a yellowish tint. His eyes even appeared to turn an orangish-yellow. And something had changed on the inside too. He was now coughing up these disgusting phlegm-balls of unidentified muck. More and more he would hack up these gross globules and quickly flush them down the toilet. After a week or two he went to the doctor who was amazed and flummoxed by Glen's symptoms but couldn't figure out the cause. He suggested staying out of the water.

But.. in late February a killer storm raged through the quaint coastal burg of Pacifica. And Glen; yellowed, hair-falling out, face now swollen, phlegm-balls gargling... couldn't resist a few closeout tubes at his favorite little local rivermouth. This time the rain was raging and the creek was flowing like mad. Glen paddled out in the torrent and began working the frothy, churning sandbar peak. Barrel after barrel. Closeout drubbing after closeout drubbing. Glen was on cloud nine. After the session he jogged back up to his house and jumped in the shower. Something felt really wrong in Glen's throat. Really wrong. He hacked and harrumphed and gurgled and spat until he worked this chunk of inner tissue out of his mouth. He spit it into the bottom of the shower and was shocked and amazed to see that the purple/green mass quivered and moved of its own accord. Soon the thing looked to be reforming itself into a small demon critter. It had a tiny head with one large brown eye, a small mouth with big toothy fangs, and a little gelatinous brown/green body with fins and feet and wrinkled goo-flesh. It looked up at Glen, then sprinted over to his ankle and took a huge bite. It clamped onto Glen's ankle until Glen beat it off by smacking his leg into the side of the tub. The phlegm-thing then turned up toward him and said, in a high-pitched, devilish voice, "I am the demon of Linda Mar! All who surf my waters will be cursed until the day they die!" Haa haaa HAaaaah!!!!" And with that the little green demon jumped out of the shower, out of the bathroom, out of the house and all the way down to the boat-docks, where it leapt into the water and hasn't been seen since.

---------------------------

Anyone have recommendations for a romantic hotel or bed and breakfast in the city, Marin or Santa Cruz for Saturday night. Not too expensive but with style. Thanks!

---------------------------

Pancho beat Mick Fanning in round 3 on the Gold Coast. I hope he wins it all this year!
niceness

niceness

niceness

niceness

Posted by Ethan at 09:58 AM
March 07, 2006
jersey B&W

Jonathon Hoover photos
niceness

niceness

niceness

niceness

Posted by Ethan at 09:48 AM
March 06, 2006
Hugo the travel master

Hugo Morales knows the road. He's been traveling the better part of two years. Constantly on the hunt for colorful places, friendly folks, beautiful women.. and if everything lines up maybe a dredging wave or three. Right now he's leaving Uruguay on his way to the Falkland Islands. A stunning Argentinean lass promised him a comfortable two weeks on her family's farm on Speedwell Island. After a day of travel the two of them finally unload their stuff at her rustic, ancient-feeling farmhouse overlooking the mighty south Atlantic Ocean. Towering boulder-fields dot the land while curving, expansive beaches stretch out in both directions. Hugo takes it all in while sipping a cup of freshly brewed local coffee. Ahhhh...

Hugo's hostess, Alessandra, suggests they grab their wetsuits and boards and go for a quick exploratory mission to the few surf spots on her property. They load up two ATV's and head out to the south, over scraggy ranch-land and gently sloping hills. After 20 minutes of offroad driving they pull up to a little beach with a rocky headland to the East. The ocean looks flat but is blown smooth but a chilly, tenacious offshore wind. Two minutes later a little set of 6 waves comes wrapping around the headland and peels seductively. Small lefts. Hollow but playful. They're out there. Alessandra rides her longboard with elegance and grace. She stylishly walks up to the tip and places her tanned latina toes over the nose. Her body dynamics are sure and resolute. She's been surfing this spot her whole life. Her older brothers and their friends teaching her the ways of the waves. Hugo surfs his fish with flow and power. Years on the road, months at a time just chilling at world-class reef breaks, has honed his surfing to a highly refined pitch. He tucks up into a little pig-dog barrel off the drop, then comes out and carves a thick cutback into the meat of the wave. Alessandra hoots him and yells, "Andele Hugo!"

After a few hours of surf, chatting and flirting in the water. Just the two of them, a few pelicans, and a few penguins on the beach. Hugo and Alessandra make their way back to the farmhouse. They jump in the modern wooden jacuzzi with a few glasses of wine and recount the days waves. The fire is blazing in the big stone fireplace and the two sun-weary youngsters settle into a romantic evening of massages, libation, laughter and sensuality.

a few photos from surfimages.com

Tracks Mag party. Go Aussies!

Posted by Ethan at 09:41 AM
March 03, 2006
Dark, wet, slippery.

Late-night post-band practice drive to a friend's house.
Dark. Cold. Rainy.
Miles Davis, Electric Masada, Bill Laswell.
Thinking maybe the little spot near him will be working in the morning.
At stake was a ton of driving and a bit of sleep deprivation.
Finally arrive and he sets me up on the couch.
The rain blasts down on the skylights above.
RATTATATT TAT!
Tempestuous storm winds howl and whisper.
Spoooky vibes in this rinky little town.
Fall asleep thinking about the morrow's possibilities.

He wakes me at 5:20.
It's still raining.
We pack up the car and drive 25 minutes to the spot.
No music on the radio.
No radio.
Just anticipatory silence and occasional hand-blowing.
Heaters blasting.
Pull off the road and park.
Get out and walk to the top of sloping rise.
From atop the cliff we look down the coast and see what looks like white-water lines.
Still too dark to see for sure but all signs point toward YES.
The wind whips maniacally and the rain pelts down.. but.. it's time to surf.
We quickly slip into the seal suits and jog down a long, rocky path to the beach.
Blueish light begins to illuminate the eastern sky.
We scamper along slippery boulders and around barnacle-encrusted sea stacks.
Get to the jump-in spot and start to paddle out.
The wind whips stinging salt water into the eyes.
Thank god for the hood and earplugs!! Love those things!!
In the distance we can barely see peeling lines meandering along.
Grumpy and wind-tossed, but peeling.
My boy gets out there first and immediately turns around and drops into a long one.
Slow but powerful, he pumps and sets up some stylish cutbacks.
No immediate waves for me so i sit out there and contemplate the environs.
Majestic, rolling, dark-green California hills.
Grandiose, vertical, ocean-shorn rocky cliffs.
Squawking, unperturbed gulls and ducks.
Nobody around. No lights. No people.
Finally i see a blip on the horizon and a wave begins to rise and buckle.
I get under the ledge and luck into a nice takeoff ramp.
Fast, quick takeoff..
Steer off the bottom.
Work down the line.
React to the wave, try to utilize it's natural energy pockets.
Get a hoot from my friend.
Kick out.
Paddle back.
Enjoy 8 or so waves like that and then rush back to the car, back to his house, back to my car, then rush rush rush back to the city. back to the office.. back to the computer. back to the now. Tired but pleased.

Jeff Chamberlain emailed some photos of a recent boat trip he took to a rarely-surfed stretch of California coast
niceness

niceness

niceness

niceness

niceness

niceness

niceness

This guy is effing awesome!

Posted by Ethan at 09:46 AM
March 02, 2006
Levels

There is always someone better than you.
Always someone crazier that you.
Always someone that will take off deeper than you.
Carve harder than you.
Air-drop gnarlier than you.

There will always be gorgeous women that you can't touch.
Beautiful women to swoon over.
They'll be gaga over some guy.
They'll be snuggling at night with some dude.
Not you.

There is always someone who makes more money.
Someone better looking.
Someone smarter.
Someone better prepared.
Someone more creative.
Someone more happy.
Someone more local.
Someone more ASL.

I guess you just can't let it get you down.
Maybe all judgements shouldn't be inherently comparitive.
Maybe it doesn't matter that Elvin rips harder than Alfred.
Maybe it doesn't matter that Sandy is cuter than Jane.
But maybe it does matter.

It's all in the mind!

Liquid shots from the Caribean
niceness

niceness

niceness

niceness

niceness

niceness

Posted by Ethan at 10:03 AM
March 01, 2006
exploration

Someone tipped me off about a low-key spot 3 or 4 hours from here.
I received an email about a idiosyncratic reef that had awakened after 6 months of dormancy.

I called in sick the next day and drove with my sis and her boyfriend down the highway and then along the coast to the spot. With only a few vague landmarks to go by, we weren't sure if we'd found it, but we parked the car and got out when we saw the "crop of trees in a valley after the third bend once you pass the big barn." Turkey Vultures hovered in a tree above. Cows mooed in the distance. We could see the ocean a few miles away at the end of a wrinkle in the hills, but it was going to be a long walk through what looked like boggy cow-pastures and some farmland. We loaded up our stuff; wetsuit, booties, snacks, water, herbal refreshment, sunscreen, etc. into our packs. We hopped a fence and began hiking through the fragrant, beautiful California countryside. We had to trailblaze our way down there and my sis questioned the sanity of the mission a few times, thinking some belligerent farmer was going to pull a shotgun on us. Eventually we made it to a muddy stream which we followed for about 20 minutes. To the West i could see that the ocean was super-mega-ultra glass and the wind blew slightly offshore. Sweet. After another 30 minutes of circumnavigating swampy marsh, fording divots in the stream and bypassing huge swaths of cow manure, we made it to the top of a cliff overlooking the spot. It was sight that would make any surfer sniffle. Chest to head-high primo-glass reefbreak breaking consistently and mellowly into a little channel. Rights and Lefts. Some burgers. Some barrelesque sections. Waves really tripping on the reef and running along. Nobody out. Nobody around anywhere, in any direction. The only problem was that it wasn't obvious how to get down there. We backtracked to where the stream descended the cliff and started walking down the little trail cutting through the cliff-side. Unfortunately we could not get past this one part which had become a giant waterfall (that smelled like cow shit). The descent looked really dangerous. It was the last obstacle between me and those succulent, empty reef-break waves. the beach was 20 feet below and i couldn't get there!! argh! Soo.. we hiked back up to the top of the cliff and just kind-of stood there, watching perfect waves, not knowing how to get down to them. Fuck! Three or Four sets came through. I was hiking up and down the top of the cliff, looking for another way down. My sis and her boyfriend started to set up camp, just chilling. She mentioned that maybe we should just go back to that beachbreak an hour away (weak and shitty) and i was like, "arghg! i gotta get down to this wave."

Then, like a dream vision, two surfers, a guy and a girl, came walking down the trail. They kind-of gave me a grimace as i approached and asked how to get down there. I told them that i'd give them all the dope waves and that i was sorry to spoil their solitude. Turns out there existed this not-as-steep-but-still-really-steep gravelly cliffside that you could slide down in your wetsuit a quarter mile away, then on the post-surf return you could scramble up the waterfall trail in your wetter. Siiiick! soo.. i followed them down the sketchy-ass cliff, sliding out a few times and tearing a mini hole in my suit. We finally made it down to the rocky beach and proceeded to surf this little reef for a few hours.. until the sun began to set. Tons of zippy, head-high, chunky, character-rich, squirty waves came through. The dude had style and smoothed his way through many S-turns and a few brief cover ups. The girl liked to go left and so sat real deep and took off on the shorter, punchier lefts. I found a bunch of racy, multi-pump rights to sate my surf jones. Did a few cutbacks as my sis watched from the cliff. Had one nice over-the-falls into the rocks wipeout. Left a happy surfer.

On the way back it was getting dark and we lost our way a few times. At one point we heard what sounded like high-pitched banshee yells from the road. We then saw two teenage girls standing up there, looking at us. Screaming. We stopped and looked at each other and were a bit freaked out. The girls then continued walking and singing/screaming their tripped-out siren song.

From the wavescape art expo

groms

Posted by Ethan at 10:32 AM