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Sunday, March 26, 2017

3.26.17 Playa Maderas Closeouts

We're staying in San Juan del Sur.  I had done a lot of research on the potential of this area and just a couple of days ago I had the following realization:

To surf decent-to-good waves for free, you go to Playa Maderas.

Marsella doesn't break all that often.

Remanso is too fat a wave, probably doable on massive days though.

Playa Hermosa and Playa Yankee charge $3-$4 per adult.  This is a pittance if you know the surf will be good and you're in for a good session, but it is an insurmountable amount for a surf check when the amount of swell is questionable.

The offshores are here, maybe even stronger than in the Tola (Colorado, Panga Drops) area.  But there seems to be more unsurfable coastline down here.  Costa Rica's Santa Rosa National Park is a peninsula that robs this area of almost all steep south swells.  This is likely a one and done trip as a result...

I'd been told that Playa Maderas is a zoo.  As mentioned above, it is free to go here and the waves can get very good, a rare combination for the SJDS metro area.  I was out with one other shortboarder and a few loggers who were just learning.  The crowd wasn't bad by any stretch, especially considering it's a Sunday when some locals might be on it.

The waves were up from the day before, but only marginally so.  It might have been shoulder high on the best sets.  The VAST majority were closing out.  This was likely a function of paddling out 90 minutes after the valley of the low tide, but I didn't have a choice because the family was in tow and we had to maneuver around breakfast/getting ready and naptime.

My first wave didn't immediately close out.  It gave me a split second in which to ponder, "Wow, if I summon Mick Fanning speed at takeoff I might make it around the first of many closing sections".

On my second wave, I did this mini-pump up top without thinking about it.  The offshore caught me trying to re-descend and impeded my process.  It turned my chances of reaching green water from .5 to 0%.

After this one I caught a right, which immediately closed out and I jumped up and over.

I was pretty over it by this point and went back in not long thereafter.

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