Post subject: pacific coast ramblings - lots o pics
Posted: Wed Sep 10, 2008 12:04 am
Joined: Mon Feb 06, 2006 11:31 pm Posts: 590 Location: ca. - sierra
passing time in summer (here in CA) while waiting for the snow can be an exercise in patience, or it can be what you make of it. i decided to make something of it and have been going up to the central coast just about every weekend now for a little while. it all started with my last TR from big sur. i got the fever. since then the coast from monterey to southern big sur has been my home away from home. not a bad place to be if you have to pass the time until snow falls again in your home range.
more than a couple weeks back now, storn managed to get down to big sur and join me for a day. it was an amazing day of surf as usual. foggy and empty almost all day.
he got there around 6:30 - right on time and we descended into the fog. this is what it looked like down below.
i think someone was stoked. i was gonna make some wise ass comment about the hippies down there but i'll let tex chime in with that...i should have hung out to get a couple shots of storn surfing but when you get to a place like this and its empty you gotta waste no time getting out there
after about 3 hrs storn had his fill and got out, and to my surprise grabbed my cam and shot a few. if i had known i would have given him a quick run down on the manual settings. anyway the exposure is a bit off on this one but i like this shot cuz it shows how clear and green the water is down there. im still so thankful to even have any shots from this day. thanks storn!
a popular surf forecasting website was calling for surf from the south in the 1-3 ft range with some plus sets
i guess this was what the plus sets looked like at this spot
i like this shot cuz there is nobody else out there just me and this popup peak. plenty of these rolled by unridden.
so after a short rest it was time for session 2, which ended the day, a full day at the coast in the water, just another typical day at fullers. storn was due to go back to filling out paperwork sunday so he left for home. sunday was just as good and again empty! i couldnt believe it.
sunday morn shots>>>
this was a good set off the point, lined up and peeling, empty perfection! i had to pinch myself to make sure i wasnt dreaming.
after a good 4 plus hrs in the water alone someone else finally showed up. i thought it was crowded so i got out for a break and snapped some shots.
this weekend it was fog/low clouds all weekend. i probably spent about 16+ hrs in the water over those two days. i had to convince myself to get out of the water on sunday eve to conserve enough energy to make the hike up the cliffs and the long drive home, i think i had to pull over twice to cat nap, dont ask me how but i made it back to LA tired and stoked!
i had to stop for some shots along PCH on the drive home
this is willow creek, a popular surf spot in the south. it wasnt picking up much swell here that weekend but this spot can get very good.
after missing a weekend it was time to get back to big sur, it was the holiday weekend and some more small south swell with some plus sets was in the forecast. i was really looking forward to 3 days in that area. i was supposed to get out of work early but ended up staying late, sometimes duty calls. well on sat morn i was at least expecting a couple people to be out due to the holiday and all but, it was empty and perfect!
once again descending the trail from the pea soup fog above....
....and its empty and going off!
after seeing this set i was running down the beach and tearing into the water as quick as possible!
there are some good rights out there also, but i dont bother with them.
ok so i had some company on the beach
finally the sun made an appearance. shortly thereafter three guys went out. again i thought it was crowded so after the typical 4hr solo session i got out for a water and snack break and took some shots.
there were some nice peaks breaking a bit farther out as the day went on
one of the guys picked off a nice set. soon after it was time to go out again. the other guys got out soon after i paddled back out so once again i had it solo for the rest of the day.
i wanted to surf to sunset but i was getting pretty tired so i got out and enjoyed sunset on the beach. all afternoon there were the wild looking clouds forming. as the evening wore on one of them passed overhead and it was actually spitting rain! it was a surreal experience. after a quick shower in the waterfall it was time to slog back up the trail, with another solid 8 hr surf day under the belt.
like i have said before this place has many moods. that day there was a northwest wind that picked up good and sent a windswell down the coast. it really messed up the waves at fullers so sunday and monday were "down days." i spent sunday exploring the coast and hiking around. all the wilderness east of PCH is closed right now due to the fire danger and damage so i made a day out of hiking down to all the spots you can go to the beach in big sur. also andrew molera has some good trails and i spent the afternoon there.
looking down into some random valley, i had flashbacks to some sierra bushwacks from last year
looking south to point sur lighthouse, with little sur rivermouth beachbreak in the foreground. that beach always has big surf but i have only seen it good maybe a handful of times, and access is pretty much impossible unelss you dont mind trespassing or have permission from the el sur ranch.
little sur rivermouth
andrew molera state park coastline looking north to point sur. there is a good right that breaks off the point at molera and its always offshore there.
those "hills" back there were looking pretty charred.
oaks with moss. i have this compulsion when i see those classic california oaks to go climb them and hang out.
more fire damage
sunday was a nice day to play around on the coast but i knew i was missing surf somewhere so monday i decided to have a look at the southern spots
this is sand dollar beach, going off! the windswell was hitting pretty good here. being a beach break, this spot is one of those hit or miss spots when it comes to the shape of the waves, but it always has waves, and if its big then its really big here.
the monday afternoon session was a good one, those lefts were going all the way and only a couple guys out. sand dollar is a great place and i always enjoy ending a weekend in big sur with a surf there.
ok so now i will wrap it up with a couple more shots from this past weekend, it was really good again! >>> this time it was empty for moring and evening sessions but all during the mid-day session there were people out, maybe 6 or 8 at the most. i stayed out but only because the surf was much bigger this weekend and it was well worth it.
its september now and it feels like we have turned the corner, winter is coming!
Thanks for an epic day, Dave! I've got to get back down there... maybe I'll try to carve out a day this weekend, even.
Good surf is such an etherial thing - the tide changes, swells drop, conditions blow out or crowd out in a moments notice. So I've always been of the mindset that you never bail when you're scoring excellent conditions. It'll get crappy soon enough. But what if it stays good all day?? Can you really just surf and surf for 8 straight hours? Well now I know!
Post subject: Re: pacific coast ramblings - lots o pics
Posted: Wed Sep 10, 2008 8:04 pm
Joined: Sat Oct 08, 2005 3:44 pm Posts: 503 Location: Flagstaff, AZ
Can you really just surf and surf for 8 straight hours?
Yes you can! I did once waaaayyyy back in the day. All I remember now is how hungry I was walking back to the car. Back then this is the kind of trip I would dream about all day long. Now it's all about chasin' the white wave. These killer photos kinda make me want to get back to surfing.
_________________ "Do not follow where the path may lead. Go where there is no path... and leave a trail." --Today's fortune cookie.