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Teiki Mathieu Baillan surfing a self-made Alaia surfboard in Lances Left, Mentawaï, Indonesia. Photo by C. Naslain, 2009.

Surf spot atlas made by surfers for surfers
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 Mendocino

USA, California

The Mendocino coast is a beautiful, albeit rugged place to surf. Over the decades, quite a local surf scene has developed here. Mendo is broken into a couple of sections: North of MacKerricker is the country; MacKerricker to Mendocino village as "town"; Manchester to Iversen Point is the south coast. A good portion of the coast is inaccessible unless you happen to own a boat.

Autumn and winter usually produce the best overall conditions for surfing along this coast, though in winter, the swells get large and often times its too stormy and disorganized to surf anywhere. Spring sucks, too much howling northwest gales and short-period swells. Summer can be good when the south swells reach this far north. Mendocino is also a sharky coast. Attacks are rare, but do happen. Sightings aren't uncommon.

Mendocino is also a working-class community, a touristy community and part of the marijuana culture's Emerald Triangle. Locals are, for the most part friendly, but only if you show respect. Don't surf up here like you would at your home break. Localism is rare these days, but still occur from time to time.

English (Translate this text in English): The Mendocino coast is a beautiful, albeit rugged place to surf. Over the decades, quite a local surf scene has developed here. Mendo is broken into a couple of sections: North of MacKerricker is the country; MacKerricker to Mendocino village as "town"; Manchester to Iversen Point is the south coast. A good portion of the coast is inaccessible unless you happen to own a boat.

Autumn and winter usually produce the best overall conditions for surfing along this coast, though in winter, the swells get large and often times its too stormy and disorganized to surf anywhere. Spring sucks, too much howling northwest gales and short-period swells. Summer can be good when the south swells reach this far north. Mendocino is also a sharky coast. Attacks are rare, but do happen. Sightings aren't uncommon.

Mendocino is also a working-class community, a touristy community and part of the marijuana culture's Emerald Triangle. Locals are, for the most part friendly, but only if you show respect. Don't surf up here like you would at your home break. Localism is rare these days, but still occur from time to time.

English (Translate this text in English): The Mendocino coast is a beautiful, albeit rugged place to surf. Over the decades, quite a local surf scene has developed here. Mendo is broken into a couple of sections: North of MacKerricker is the country; MacKerricker to Mendocino village as "town"; Manchester to Iversen Point is the south coast. A good portion of the coast is inaccessible unless you happen to own a boat.

Autumn and winter usually produce the best overall conditions for surfing along this coast, though in winter, the swells get large and often times its too stormy and disorganized to surf anywhere. Spring sucks, too much howling northwest gales and short-period swells. Summer can be good when the south swells reach this far north. Mendocino is also a sharky coast. Attacks are rare, but do happen. Sightings aren't uncommon.

Mendocino is also a working-class community, a touristy community and part of the marijuana culture's Emerald Triangle. Locals are, for the most part friendly, but only if you show respect. Don't surf up here like you would at your home break. Localism is rare these days, but still occur from time to time.

English (Translate this text in English): The Mendocino coast is a beautiful, albeit rugged place to surf. Over the decades, quite a local surf scene has developed here. Mendo is broken into a couple of sections: North of MacKerricker is the country; MacKerricker to Mendocino village as "town"; Manchester to Iversen Point is the south coast. A good portion of the coast is inaccessible unless you happen to own a boat.

Autumn and winter usually produce the best overall conditions for surfing along this coast, though in winter, the swells get large and often times its too stormy and disorganized to surf anywhere. Spring sucks, too much howling northwest gales and short-period swells. Summer can be good when the south swells reach this far north. Mendocino is also a sharky coast. Attacks are rare, but do happen. Sightings aren't uncommon.

Mendocino is also a working-class community, a touristy community and part of the marijuana culture's Emerald Triangle. Locals are, for the most part friendly, but only if you show respect. Don't surf up here like you would at your home break. Localism is rare these days, but still occur from time to time.

Seasonal swell & wind variations:

Winds are variable. Southerly winds come with storms. Northerly winds typical otherwise. Northwest and west swells are dominant. South swells do make it this far and light up certain reefs/sandbars.

English (Translate this text in English): Winds are variable. Southerly winds come with storms. Northerly winds typical otherwise. Northwest and west swells are dominant. South swells do make it this far and light up certain reefs/sandbars.

English (Translate this text in English): Winds are variable. Southerly winds come with storms. Northerly winds typical otherwise. Northwest and west swells are dominant. South swells do make it this far and light up certain reefs/sandbars.

English (Translate this text in English): Winds are variable. Southerly winds come with storms. Northerly winds typical otherwise. Northwest and west swells are dominant. South swells do make it this far and light up certain reefs/sandbars.

More details

 
Seasons
Jan/Feb Mar/Apr May/Jun Jul/Aug Sep/Oct Nov/Dec
Best Surfing Season
Typical Swell Size
Surf Equipment Fato integral Fato integral Fato integral Fato integral Fato integral Fato integral
Water temp.            
Air temp.            
Climate

Seasonal swell & wind variations

Winds are variable. Southerly winds come with storms. Northerly winds typical otherwise. Northwest and west swells are dominant. South swells do make it this far and light up certain reefs/sandbars.

English (Translate this text in English): Winds are variable. Southerly winds come with storms. Northerly winds typical otherwise. Northwest and west swells are dominant. South swells do make it this far and light up certain reefs/sandbars.

English (Translate this text in English): Winds are variable. Southerly winds come with storms. Northerly winds typical otherwise. Northwest and west swells are dominant. South swells do make it this far and light up certain reefs/sandbars.

English (Translate this text in English): Winds are variable. Southerly winds come with storms. Northerly winds typical otherwise. Northwest and west swells are dominant. South swells do make it this far and light up certain reefs/sandbars.

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Surf Spots

Surf Spots (10)
Quality Direction Type Frequ Experience
Big River 4 / -
Right and left Rivermouth Beginners wave
Blues - / -
Right and left Beach-break Experienced surfers
Caspar - / -
Left Sand-bar All surfers
Hare Creek - / -
Right and left Sand-bar All surfers
Manchester Beach 1 / -
Right and left Beach-break Experienced surfers
Moat creek 1 / -
Right Reef-rocky All surfers
Point Arena Cove 11 / -
Right Reef-rocky Experienced surfers
Schooners Gulch 1 / -
Right and left Sand-bar All surfers
The Oasis 3 / -
Right and left Beach-break All surfers
Usal Beach - / -
Right Reef-rocky Don't know
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 Photos

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Big river
United States of America

Point arena cove
United States of America

Point arena cove
United States of America

Point arena cove
United States of America

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 Comments

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By Victor Vonsturman , 07-12-2010

Pt Arena cove and breaks adjacent... - Yeah, pack your AK in the trunk. It takes the one sheriff patrolling this area to arrive at least 40 mins to arrive and most likely more. Bring a big friend with a carry permit for his glock. He watches the car while you surf. Don't bring a dog, the locals dog will kill him. Many good waves, and some cool heads, but you can easily get messed up. Urgent care is in Gualala. Helicopter evacuation to Ukiak is $20k

By A local , 01-02-2008

Re: Caspar - Yeah Caspar is Mendo's version of Waikiki, and also one of the only surfable spots when the swell gets big, like today.

By Anonymous , 27-12-2007

Caspar Creek - Surfed at Caspar Creek on Christmas day 2007. It wasn't the best day for the waves, but off and on throughoout the day the surfer head count ranged from 1 to 12. Surfers were all adults from 20-something to 60-something. Both sexes, several races, and varied skill levels were represented. My wife and I were the only non-locals. Everyone in the water was friendly and all had a good time. I look forward to surfing there again. It's pretty, easy, and the locals surfers made it more fun. (How often do you hear something like that?)

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