Hoodies Are Hot! Cool?

22 11 2009

Okay, so Trestles is not exactly at the same latitude as Norway, but cold water is a relative thing.

So, what is with all the hoodies in the water?  The water was 63 degrees this morning, but it may as well have been Santa Cruz or points north.   Full disclosure–I was one of the culprits.  I had the 2 mil hood, the gloves, the booties, and the 4/3 fullsuit on.  I felt like Michelin tire man and I surfed just like him.

My friend, and mechanic, Buzz is from South Africa.  He’s been here for years but I think the beaches of Durban are in his blood.  In fact, he’s on his way back down there over the holidays.  He said he hasn’t surfed much since moving to California, because the water is too cold.  Whenever I hear that it sends a shot of warm water envy through my veins.  What would it be like to grow up thinking Trestles water is too cold to surf?  So, “cold water” is really just an issue of relativity.

Back to the hoodies.

Is it just me, or are there more than our fair share of hoods in the water?  Is that due to an aging surf clientele, better wetsuit availability, or are we just on to a new fashion statement before everyone else?

With all that said, I know the answer—it’s the offshore wind.  Trestles is at the bottom of a valley that extends all the way into the Ortega Mountains (Cleveland National Forest).  Most days of the year, the offshore winds funnel down the valley and collide with the ocean at Trestles.  In the winter time, that wind is really cold.  So, at daybreak (the only legitimate time to surf in my mind), 63-degree water can feel like 53-degree water.

So, next time you join the Crowd this winter, make sure you bring your 4/3 and your hood.  You’ll fit right in.

Dump Malibu Septic Tanks

18 11 2009

Our friends to the North, in Malibu, are looking to clean up their act.  By 2019, they will actually have a sewer system, after years of battles to get rid of the septic tanks that seep onto one of our favorite surf spots, Surfrider Beach.

Check out this video:

This is video commentary completed for COMM 435, taught by Professor Steve Scauzillo.

Did You Know Sgt. Charlie Cartwright?

15 11 2009

0009Marine-Corps-FlagAs a school assignment to do a Veteran’s Day blog, I was Googling “Marine surfers” and happened across the Camp Pendleton Surf Club.  As I read the latest post entered on the www.cpsurfclub.com today (November 14), my heart ached.

The reality sunk in.   The violence of a war 180 degrees from San Clemente came into our living room through the mention of Sgt. Charlie Cartwright, a surf brother. 

See, the posting said that Sgt. Cartwright died on November 7 while supporting Marines in combat in Afghanistan.   This was his fourth, and last, tour of duty in the Middle East.

I never met Sgt. Cartwright, but I wish I had.  According to Ted Handler, as posted by Steve on cpsurfclub.com, Sgt. Cartwright was “one of the truly good guys out there and unlike us — he could no shit surf.”  Being stationed at Camp Pendleton, Sgt. Cartwright surfed the local beaches.  That brought it home that Sgt. Cartwright may well have been a member of our own Trestles Surf Crowd.  Fittingly, there was a paddleout at Church on Veteran’s Day for Sgt. Cartwright.  And, he sounds like a great guy–wish I had met him.

Here’s a link to Sgt. Cartwright’s bio — http://freedomremembered.com/index.php/sgt-charles-i-cartwright/.

What amazes me is that Sgt. Cartwright signed up for the Marines on September 10, 2001, the day before the Twin Towers attack.    It sounds like he always wanted to be a United States Marine.  His sense of duty on our behalf started from when he was just a boy.  No matter how one feels about our involvement in other countries’ battles, you can’t help but admire our brothers and sisters who raise their hands to stand in the gap between our safety and the enemy.

Reading about Sgt. Cartwright reminded me once again how we take our privileged lives for granted while heroes like him face the reality of not knowing if they will be returning home.

Sgt. Cartwright, we salute you and thank you!  Semper Fi   . . .   and Hang Ten!

Bolsa Chica — The Northern San Onofre

11 11 2009

Here’s a great destination for Crowd surfers on a Great Recession budget — Bolsa Chica State Beach.

bolsa chica

Just where is Bolsa Chica?

Bolsa has a reputation similar to Old Man’s, though I would argue the waves are a bit quirkier.   Bolsa is a very soulful place and at the same time the quintessential So Cal “let’s go to the beach” place to go. 

It’s the northern destination for the woody/longboard set.  You can pack up the family, the dog, the bar-b, and all your surf tunes and head for a day at the beach.  [Actually, not sure about the dog, but Dog Beach is nearby if you just can’t leave Spike behind.]

My professor, Steve Scauzillo passed on this link from his rockin’ surfer boss Larry Wilson.


They are photos of Harbour Surf Day at Bolsa on Saturday, November 7.    Looks like a lot of fun.  They seem to have gotten the last swell better than Trestles.  Nobody’s killin’ it, but it looks pretty close to longboard Nirvana.

You might want to browse other photos on the www.awefoto.com website while you’re there. 

So, all you Crowd members, time to pack up the boards and wetsuits and head north.

There’s A Coverup At San Onofre

9 11 2009

san onofre signAccording to the Orange County Register, in October, the California Supreme Court refused to hear the case brought against the California Department of Parks and Recreation by the Naturist Action Committee and Friends of San Onofre Beach.   That case was filed to try to force State Parks to allow nude sunbathing at Trail 6 at San Onofre Bluffs State Beach.

So, who really cares one way or the other?

How many of us have ever been stopped from surfing at Trail 6 by people not wearing clothes who should?   Evidently, there are some families that just can’t enjoy the beach anywhere but Trail 6.  Further, a bunch of adults flapping around in the breeze keep them from that enjoyment.

When the swells hit, Trail 6 is not the first place I think of to surf or even hang out on the beach.  One of my good friends swears he has wired the rock outcropping just south of Trail 6 on the Base.  Not in an explosive sort of way in anyway.  The only explosion is what he does to the waves.  Nonetheless, the nudies don’t stop him from getting to his secret break.

Honestly, most of us are not dying to strip down to bare skin.  There is a lot you can do at the beach with clothes on.  So, why waste time, money and effort fighting for something that just isn’t that important?  Maybe I just don’t get it.

nudity signFinally, a nudity ban is unlikely to ban nudity entirely.  There will still be those occasional surfers who tie their boardshorts around their heads at dusk to get them back to their primordial roots.  But, who’s watching and who cares?

I’m not for a nudity ban.  I’m just not against it either.

Let’s use our resources getting us back to nature in other ways.  And, for everyone else’s sake, I’ll take the clothing option.