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Wednesday, September 14, 2011

9.14.2011 Doing the Shorebreak Shuffle!

Given my bearish attitude on beachbreaks of late, I decided to go for a change of pace. There is a spot in North County that I can surf with few or no other people that can go off with a swell like this one.

Unfortunately, today was not one of these days. The good news is the surf looked better than Oceanside has looked in two weeks!

I only needed to check it for twenty seconds before I knew I would be out there. My standards for rideable surf have dropped to the level where crook surf looks ok and ok surf looks amazing. It's somewhat analogous to what sailors must go through after months out at sea on a boat full of dudes who on their best day are still ugly women. And then they hit port.

I spent about five minutes working on my leash rope. For some reason, I could not remember the knot pattern and used the first knot you use to tie your shoes and repeated it about five times to make the leash stay.

I paddled out just south and a good way outside of the two other heads there and caught my first wave within a minute of picking my perch spot. It was boggy at the beginning, then turned racy. I pumped and pumped, as you're prone to do on shorebreak, and I took one last big pump, the pinnacle of which put me in the vertical part of the wave just as the lip was throwing over. If I'd gotten there a split second faster, I would be experiencing a sick speed floater. Instead, I got pitched over the falls.

I spent the next ten minutes floating south a bit with the current as well as paddling for waves and pulling back. I watched a peak to the south that was working and paddle over there, but it was so shifty I never got a good one. I saw a right that I was out of position for spit from the back (rare in California). I started frothing a bit and the very next wave was mine.

I caught the wave a bit early, stalled on my pop-up to let it develop a bit (you rarely do this in Hawaii) and then launched with all my weight forward traveling sideways down the face of the wave. The wave immediately pitched over me and I got a great view of the barrel as it closed out ten feet in front of me.

I went in, walked farther south to where I originally paddled out and started paddling again. The waves were becoming less consistent as the tide was rising. I caught a left where I had to stomp on my front foot to stay on the wave and then pumped like a madman (while setting the 2011 personal record for most pumps on a wave with 5 or 6). I was outpacing the wave and laid into what sounded like a wicked cutback but I had very little to push again and I neglected to transfer my weight back to my front foot to do a roundhouse cutty.

I paddled back to where I caught the last wave and caught another one about five minutes later. I pumped and the wave began pitching in front of me (five yards of section). I backdoored it and pulled in to the closeout and pulled out the back. If this wave had lined up, I would've been in an amazing spot for a barrel...!

My last wave took fifteen minutes to arrive, but it was worth the wait. I started pumping down the line and began a slash on a part of the wave with some vertical slope and popped a fin out of the water. A little more weight on my front foot and I would've slidden the tail out.

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