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Teiki Mathieu Baillan surfing a self-made Alaia surfboard in Lances Left, Mentawaï, Indonesia. Photo by C. Naslain, 2009.
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Gnarly!!! - Winter Northwest swells are huge,powerfull and killer. Grab your gun catch the biggest waves of your life !! Summer South swells are clean and lots of fun !!!
I was there - I'm living far away from any ocean in the world. In my country(Bulgaria) we have small size sea(Black Sea). This summer was my second season of surfing and I have chance to surf OB for three mounths and I learned how to fight with your paddle wich is so hard. I learned how to hide myself from waves. And I learned to be sure in myself when I stand up on my board. One time I was close to die, then three waves hit me once after anouther and after third one I didn't realy feel power in my hands and legs, then I had chance to catch my board and got the next wave wich pull me out to the beach. This day I saw there the biggest waves in my life. After a 15mins brake I was again in the water for one more hour. Now I'm again in my country when the waves comes not more than 2 times per mounth for 2-3days per time. But I will be there every time when they come. Buy SF, I miss OB it's great spot for everybody who want to increase his skills in surfing.
It can humble you at 3 feet - Did a early morning paddle out, first one out, on what looked like a small day. I got out, and the place was moving a lot of water. So much, I wondered if I lost my board if I coul make the swim in. Not a fun feeling.S
By old guy
Going off - WELL, IT HAS BEEN.First time out on a wimpy 3 foot, 17 second swell, go almost nailed by a good size set, on a 7'2" board, and realized, if I can't paddle against the rip, what chance do I have swimming? As for OB not being hollow, it was offshore, VERY thick, on high tide, and throwing. Sloat.
By beach runner
inconsistent... - Well, since September First, I've been at the beach everyday, prior to day break, running, watching the sun come up.I've only scene a couple days I REALLY wished I was able to surf, but, my back is healing, slowly but surely. Lots of fog, and, it's funny but big swells on weekends, with blown out conditions.
By Lord of the...
hobbit's head high - Photo No. 7 has the caption saying that it's 3 x overhead. Is that 3 x overhead to a hobbit?
By Outer Aves resident.
Why the beach kicks ass - It is not really ALL about the surf. Sure, OB can offer up some sweet steep but not hollow head high/slightly overhead waves. Sure, the outer bars at OB can provide world class smaller "big surf" rivaled by few places on the west coast of the US. But more often than not it is a little warbly. A little poorly shapen. Bar set-ups inconsistent from set to set. The beach provides a fix for those of us who live here. We also live in the most livable city in the USA. It also happens to provide a consistent surf fix with its limitations. Don't get me wrong - when the beach turns on it is ON FIRE. But more of the time it is one really good workout, and a few waves, before we return to life in SF. It will never have tubes to compare to Indo or Pipe. If will never have a point break setup to compare to the ones just S of Point Conception. It lacks consistency in clean conditions, but makes up for it in consistency in size. Something on tap, and a good workout, guaranteed. If a really skilled surfer from out of town catches a good day, he'll have himself a really good day. But less experienced out of towners will probably meet OB the hard way. C'est la vie. It is not for the weak of heart or arms.
OB since 1996 - I've nearly died twice at OB over the past 9 years, and am thankful for the near-death experiences. These were days where you paddle out on a 7'2" and realize you misjudged the size by a longshot, because no one else had gone out yet (the view from the dunes/lot is VERY deceptive). These are the days when you paddle out for 20-30 mins into a heaving, angry ocean, and you are a gnat in the bucket. When the swell stair-steps from 10' to 12' to 15' in a matter of minutes, and you are suddenly undergunned and a quarter-mile+ offshore in the deep, gray, shark-infested waters, alone. It enabled a quantum change in my life that 99.999% of the world could never possibly understand. OB is ahumbling, scary, fantastic place to test your mettle. These are the days when pure intent and willpower have to be conjured, because all of your skills -- though important -- become muted to the other preparations in your mind/body. It a visceral, do-or-die feeling, and OB canhit you like a stadium full of wet cement over your eggshell noggin. When you are outmatched at OB, you find out what you are made of, inside and out. The place will truly ring your bell at 6', and it just gets wilder from there on up. The blood just left my extremities as I wrote this, no lie....that's the magic and the memory of OB in me.
By just another OB surfer
SoCal Transplants guy - For a second I thought you were the guy who was out this Winter just killing double overheard center of the beach until I read further: (1) messy lines of crumbling junk? Try surfing at times other than mid-day. (2) Bomb at VFs? Bombs are at the middle and south end, not at VFs. (3) Ft Pt and Deadmans fun vs. OB? A great wave at either ft.pt or dmans doesn't compare w/ a fun one at OB (although OB fun waves are rare)...unless you're just referring to the dman's takeoff behind the can opener. (4) surfing and paddling at OB -->no one ever said there wasn't a lot of paddling. If you didn't get denied at least once then you weren't surfing OB big enough.
Why the beach kicks ass - Well, today was a big 9 feet, 9 seconds. I know, in Hawaii I'd be riding a 6' board, and having fun at Kammies.The beach was breaking on the second sand bars, and, the trenches aren't cut yet, so it's white water all the way to the second sand bars. Paddling out? I hate to say how many guys I watched try and get out, and didn't. Those that did, didn't catch many waves, and they were barely visible from the beach. Coast Guard agreed, since the copter was out today. Summer is OVER. I saw three guys today, make it out, and catch waves. I watched for an hour in the morning, and about a half hour in the afternoon.Welcome to OB...My 7'2" looked SO whimpy....
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