The big west peaked this morning about noon hitting 18 feet at 19 seconds from the WNW. Conditions were marginal at best, bordering on storm surf. None but the fierce and fit or foolhardy paddled out today. My strategy of waiting for the tide to drop a bit was based more on survival than wave quality and proved to be wrong because the only folks that got anything halfway decent today were riding at high tide. I wasn't one of them.
I arrived on scene at approximately 0930 hours to find the tide at at 4.5 feet and dropping. Things were generally messy with lots of water moving through the line-ups. I brought both standup and laydown boards with me just in case. It became readily apparent that standup was out of the question. Too big and bumpy with poor to fair conditions at best. Laydown might have worked but the lowering tide was starting to close everything out, which was pretty close to being closed out anyway.
I was able to snap some pics, but shortly thereafter everyone got out of the water. It was just getting too jumbled up and untenable.
What I was afraid of in the first place, Ma Nature shaking her tail feathers at us, came to pass. We were just too close to the storm that created these big waves. This happend over and over again Winter of 2005/06 when the storm track consistently dropped down and either brushed us or went right through us. This created an epic Winter for Central and SoCal. Many Norcalians made the trip south that winter.
As the swell drops in size there may be a chance to get something tomorrow depending upon the interplay between size and conditions. The high surf advisory has been replaced with a high surf warning. The NWS is forecasting significant rain on Thursday/Friday so it looks like conditions will not improve enough to cause a noticeable positive change for the better.
Mash gave his account of today's paddleout. The man's got a sac which a 90 pound bag of cement couldn't compete with. Read it in the comments section of "West Swell Makes Landfall."
Other saced up chargers on SUPs in the line-up with Mash this morning were Andy, Dave and John from Surftech. Herby told me Andy got a high tide bomb from Sarges to the Forest, over a quarter mile ride. I saw Andy heading to his truck after he got out. He was on his way to pick up Dave who was over a half mile down-coast after riding a couple bigs ones from where they were surfing together at Sarges. MikeyB said John was unstoppable, shredding the meaty high tide walls and making it look easy on his SUP. (Pics from MikeyB coming soon.)