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Anonymous surfer in south-west of France. Photo by C. Naslain, 2016.
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come on out - if you judge OB, or anywhere in Northern California, by the summer, then you're an idiot. If you expect to find Southern California conditions here, then you're an idiot. If you surf OB when it's quadruple overhead, then you're an idiot. You're all idiots!!! This place has become a destination for watermen with strong skills. Today I saw Coast Guard boats practicing in the impact zone, a few kayakers getting closed out on the inside sandbar, a sea lion and a few porpoises fishing through the outside, and a few logs and plastic buckets float by (thank God that the water is too brown to see what's under me). As I strained my vision in search of other surfers, I counted only three. The reports said 2-3 times overhead this weekend and all three days in the water I never had another person even paddle across the peak that I was riding. Unlike the other comments, I pray that you come to OB. It's really scary sitting out there by yourself. BUT, only come December through February. Thank you.
Hey Surf Buds - Whats up surf buds!!...reading about this spot and it sounds rad....Me and my buds from Arizona want to learn how to surf. There are about five of us and we go off out of water and I know we can tear it up with da crew if we get the chance at a decent spot....my one friend just started kayaking and he is a madman...this website rules. Peace.
the danger is real - aside from Mavs, Ocean Beach is the most dangerous/powerful break in California when there is swell. The combination of outside sand bar, exposure, and currents, not to mention bone-breaking, sand-dredging barrels, make this place serious. i've been out there many days and seen thick barrels you could drive a van through (i didn't take em). don't believe the machismo b.s. these are the same people that measure waves from the back. just check the stats, more people die here surfing than any other break on the west coast.
don't buy the hype - Ob CAN be extremely dangerous, but people with limited experience want to hype themselves by making it sound worse than it is. It IS NOT a world-class or even good CA class wave. There is NO consistency at all. Aside from the fact it is a sandbar break the weather factor won't be what your used to if your from socal or any other stable enviroment. Winds from every direction rage the place often It can be whitecapped for weeks on end. Headhigh swells can be a washy closed out mess even if it's offshore. It CAN turn nothing short of EPIC by ANY STANDARD. But those days are few and far between. If your passing through the area you may get lucky and score but I reccomend you head elsewhere where there is more windshelter.
Hiz - I have ridden Ocean Beach on good day and it can be a lot of fun. It has to be clean though, and it is a rare occasion that this happens. Maybe Fall will bring some good conditoins our way, because this summer pretty much sucked. Often you will have the wind in your face as you stare at a blown-out, grayed-out beach. On the occasions when it does get good it is best to find a peak in the middle of the beach rather than risk hassling with the crowds at either end.
training - A friend just surfed Margaret River in Australia a while back during their winter. He called me to let me know that he now knew what a great "world class" wave was like. As we talked, I asked if it was hard to ride. He said that it was easy compared to Ocean Beach. That's the point. Ocean Beach may not provide the picture-perfect moments you see in magazines. Instead, it requires you to be "on" all the time and prepares you for any conditions. Once you surf Ocean Beach for a year in all conditions, paddling out and charging at Todos Santos, Hawaii or any so-called "heavy" spot seems like a walk in the park. For a select and scattered two weeks each winter, OB will be the best wave in California, The rest of the time it might look like a jumbled mess or a series of un-make-able sections or it may just roll from outside to middle to inside without ever really breaking down the line. However, within all the confusion and swirling water lies some great waves. Once you understand the contours of the bottom and the tides, even crappy wind-blown days become a fascinating challenge with great rewards. If you want pictures, go to Santa Cruz. If you want raw power and unlimited challenge, try Ocean Beach on a solid winter swell. The pictures will never do your memories justice.
If you surf the beach, you'll want to mix it up... - Surfing this place the entire season (roughly months with an 'R',) you've got to find shelter. You'll miss doing floaters and reos, and too often opt out of riding that next sweet looking section for fear of the-mother-of-all-poundings trying to get back out.With some time, I try to go to a nice, well-defined reef (something like Pleasure Point,) and blow some steam doing all the things that the Beach will punish you for.Surfing here the off-season is fickle, but can have rewards for the faithful.In other words, if you marry this place... you'll need therapy of all sorts!
Quit... - Yea- wu's up with these kids? OB's barrels of fun, mate, especially when it gets big!
Quit Over-reacting - Ocean Beach is no big deal. You are all a bunch of whimps- newcomers who get all jitterish as soon as it really starts getting good- and big.
De Dr Gonzo
Fear And Loathing... - "You took too much man, you took too much..."
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