With the holidays in full swing and Christmas only a few days away most people are running around trying to tie up and loose ends to make the holiday complete. While those of us here at swell brains have that somewhere in our mind our focus and energy is still directed toward the pursuit of our true happiness. This is achieved by pursuing our passions. While my focus of as of lately, outside of school, has been all things ski related, whether it be in the back country, resort laps with friends or late night urban missions. I feel that this is where I want to be but somewhere in my mind the ocean was calling for me.
Yesterday I decided to answer that call and what better place to do it that Pleasure Point Santa Cruz CA. This is the place where I really came into my own as far as surfing and therefore it holds a special place in my heart. With its blend of local culture, good waves year round and unique group on die hards there is no better place to progress and develop in surfing. Surf Line was only calling for 3-4ft with occasional 5ft, but I found it to be fairly consistent at 5ft at fist peak off pleasure point as maybe slightly higher off sewers lane. This held steady from about 1pm until 4pm. First peak began to get a bit crowded as is usual, so I paddled over to sewers lane just slightly north and there was three of us taking our turns on the great Northern California swell. My weapon of choice for the day was a 6’7 with fairly sharp rails and 2.25 thick just thick enough to support my 200lb frame but still able to make bottom turns with ease. I was wearing a 4mm wetsuit and it seemed to keep me warm but being that I never use booties or gloves, 3 hours was all my extremities could handle.
I took a trip over to 26th ave on my skateboard after showering off to see if there was anything worth riding off that side of the point and to my surprise there were few barrels to be had with only one lone solder making his turns. This place tends to get decent winter barrels and yesterday held true to this, a short ride with maybe one turn but none the less fun.
I came across a little boy named Ian who was 6 years old and his father was out with him teaching him to surf. He told me he had been surfing for almost a year now as was learning turns this year. Those of us here at swell brains embrace such things in a big way. Kids these days have so many distractions that take them away from nature and keep them inside and trapped. We see this as a huge disadvantage to them and see it as the wrong path to send kids down. To see a father sacrifice a day of good waves to pass his passion on to this son did my heart good. That’s what I feel is special about Santa Cruz, people have a different outlook on life and priorities than most places in America.
Surfing is one of those things that you cannot describe to someone and the connection to which is made with the ocean is like no other connection I have ever experienced in life. Even with being away from her for 5 months as soon as I zipped up my wet suite, waxed my board down, and made my first stroke in the cold water I felt that connection reignite as strong as ever. No matter what the conditions or how cold the water the joy and feeling I get from riding waves is matched by very few things in life.