Session 5009: Fish Heaven!
I forgot to mention until this time that I am carrying on my 6'6 Fish on this trip. Because my wagon has some reliability issues, we decided to take my wife's car, and to make the matter worse, we were not able to find the rack for this car that fit. We got the clip for the car but when I opened the rail there was no installation posts! So I had to execute the last-minute contingency plan of bringing just the 6'6.
I am actually happy with this decision for three reasons. First is that it now forces me to ride this board. It is often the case that I carry all lengths of boards, but I never take a full advantage of that, for example, switching the board in a mid session. The second reason is that by limiting the choice to one, I got to surf this board and thereby I am really becoming intimately more familiar with riding this board. Finally, I have been able to ride this board on this trip.
Yesterday, I mainly surfed the N side of San Onofre and today I did the Trestles. I was embarrassingly the only short boarder yesterday in San Onofre, but today I was in the Fish heaven!
This morning, as usual I drove over to San Onofre state park with a full intention of walking in front of the military trailer park to the Trestles. The wave faces a quite a bit bigger than yesterday as predicted and actually now making fairly big size shore breaks. I actually don't know where to park if you want to go there straight, but I have heard about a long walk though a paved path? it is just easy to walk from San Onofre state park for about 5 to 10 minutes.
When I arrived there, I decided to watch for a while. The wave faces were even bigger here, and looking around, there were long boarders and if they are short boarders, they were on fishes. And this is also something that I do not see often in the area where I surf?, well, actually I did see this in Maui. But many people own board without a leash plug and fins glassed in. What a confidence! And people here are so good surfers, they are just ripping across the wave faces like in surf movies! Needless to say, my intimidation meter has gone up to 10. I finally got courage to stand up, strap on the leash and then dipped in. I was also scoping out where the people paddle out. It is either from the SE side where the picnic shelters are, or at the river mouth.
I followed a woman surfer who started to paddle out from the SE end first, and paddled a very long way to the line up. Instantly, it was very much like the Pleasure point scene, in fact that is what it felt very much like it, but a bit less intense. I stayed there for a while watched other great surfers take off. Then I paddled across and up past the river mouth where I found a bit smaller breaks and also bunch more surfers that are probably less experienced than the main pack. As I started to catch more waves, I got more confident with the area and started to catch several waves, and that was really fun.
This area was a full of cobble stones from the creek, and it was difficult to walk in and out, but I remember from one of my early surf sessions with a surf instructor in Baja that some of the best surf spots are really difficult to get in and out of. That's probably true. Rincon, Pleasure Point, the Lane, even Cowells, you got to negotiate submerged rocks carefully.
Well, I now know in the past few days of surfing with some of the local experts that what I really need to master is a confident take-off skill, the true mastery of the first 2-3 seconds of motions in getting into the waves, so I can really take advantage of bigger outside waves. I will be thinking and writing about it.