January 9, 2012 Photo: J. Chandler

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Cold Steep South Swell

So you think it's been cold this "Summer"? And you would be correct. It's the fifth coldest summer in 40 years. Don't take my word for it, read it here. Water temps have been down in the basement too, more consistently below 55 degrees than above, and not much sun these last few weeks to warm it up.

The current "next" south swell came quickly on the heels of the last one. I thought the last one was steep, this one was even steeper. Only those spots that really feel a 180 degree south swell were working well, but the constant onshore flow made for crumbly and cold conditions. While I'm not willing to give up surfing in bare feet, my hood is an on again/off again affair.

I was on scene with the usual suspects at 0545 but held back. Three folks out and what with the small and inconsistent nature of the waves, I let them have it. More than three would have been at least one too many. I decided to take a tour of the bay and double check reality with the forecast charts. The charts did well.

Everything north of Sarges was bigger. Significantly so once past the Arena and onto the coastal road north. I stopped at Couch's (about ten miles out of town). A handful of people on the left riding inconsistent overhead waves in sets of four to six. One guy on a SUP killing it on an inside reef that no one else seemed to notice. He was taking down wave after wave, all by himself, hidden in plain sight. The right at the other end of the cove was about head high and full of water, looking like it needed a lower tide.

All in all, by the time I dilly-dallied and hemmed and hawed, I was back down at the beaches looking at a one foot shore break. From one end of the county to the other it went from one foot dumpers to overhead peelers and I didn't even get wet. Sometimes that's just the way it is.

1 comment:

  1. Hey Gary, Thanks for a taste of home (we're up on Vancouver island where it was sunny and warm today!). Enjoy the swell. -Ron