|Find the best surf spots||
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Datum: WGS84 [ Help ]
Latitude: 34° 21.065' N
User rating (25)
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On Highway 101 in between the bates road exit and the Highway1 gold coast exit, there is a small road to turn into. Going southbound it is an easy right, northbound requires crossing the freeway of oncoming traffic at a turn off.
DistanceTake a car
WalkInstant access (< 5min)
Easy to find?Easy to find
Public access?Public access
Special accessDon't know
Alternative name Mussel Shoals, Cliff House,
Normal lengthNormal (50 to 150m)
Good day lengthLong (150 to 300 m)
Good swell directionNorthWest, West
Good wind directionEast, NorthEast
Swell sizeStarts working at 1.0m-1.5m / 3ft-5ft and holds up to 3m+ / 10ft+
Best tide positionLow and mid tide
Best tide movementFalling tide
Week crowdFew surfers
Week-end crowdFew surfers
There are two main peaks on normal days. The first is sitting right under the peer and taking off in front of a good size rock. Or you can go a little farther down and take off in front of the hotel on a second peak.
Usually the first takeoff has more size, but is more competitive, so just pick what suits your ability.
Watch out for Rocks!
Jump in right near the pier if you think you can time the sets. Getting out of the water is harder. There's a little tidepool right in front of the hotel, with a 6-foot hole to get through. Otherwise go way down south where the rocks are smaller.
This spot is usually a fun alternative to its neighbor Rincon. Although the waves are not nearly as world class, you will have a lighter atmosphere and much less of a crowd.
This is generally a fun little wave to surf. On smaller days and the right tide, it may even offer up a little more size than the other points in the area.
By anonymous , 31-10-2005
La Conchita - Went on a 2 1/2 month trip all around lower mexico in 73. Came back and stopped in SB to visit my best friend gary. Next moring we went to check it above Ledbetters...got caught in a CHP inspection trap. They nabbed my 67 bug for 12 safety violations. I tried to explain that i had just got back from 10 weeks in southern mexico. No dice. So pissed off. Headed south and Rincom was hammering but maxed with 80-100 folks out(big crowd in those days). Drove on down to La Conchita(little Rincon)...minus tide and flat glass with zero wind. 6-10 faces and tubing, yes tubing, from the pier all the way through the point. We surfered 8 hours with me and Gary and occasionally a couple other dudes. Epic. Just drop in off the pier and get slotted, stall, and watch the lip roll over. Never seen it close to that since.
By Lefty , 07-07-2005
Oil Piers Redux - Thanks for sharing your stories, Capt. Grumpie and OP dude. I got the luck of the draw the one day I was there in the late 60's. It started out 2-3 windy mush. After an hour in the water and taking a break it started getting better. I'm goofy and dropped into one wave that walled perfectly in front of me. Being unfamiliar, I feared it sectioning, so I squatted, grabbed the outside rail and hoped.Tubed! Completely covered for a brief moment/eternity. Popped out on the shoulder and pulled out. My first tube ride!Ahhhhh... those were the days!
By Where's the Artificial Reef? , 06-05-2005
O.P. RIP - I too miss Oil Piers. Posted this to the alt.surfing newsgroup back in '97:The Original “OP” Before Ocean Pacific shorts, there was “Oil Piers” Classic wave? Not when compared to the Queen of the Coast Just 3 miles north, or even the Queen’s little sister up the road. I first surfed OP in 1975. I first surfed in 1975. Gyro and I were 15. Frank was 16, had a license and a ‘64 VW Bug with a 6 volt battery and an 8-track tape deck. In the pre dawn we would blast down Hwy 126 towards Ventura, jamin’ to Ted Nugent and Scorpions, amping to take on whatever we could find between the Fairgrounds and the piers. We would surf all the spots in between but, loved the piers!! The piers are magic. Far enough out of town to allow you a bit of beach leverage. No parking meters, no lifeguard, no facilities, just oil sucking piers and sand sucking barrels when it comes together. I’ve surfed there, slept there, seen inside out tubes from the inside there. I’ve partied with friends, hung out and made new friends there. Body surfed, longboarded and everything in between there. I’ve never jumped off the pier but, know a guy that broke his neck there. Been in the water with Kim Merig and Tom Curren when both were pro. I’ve swam naked at midnight there. I’ve seen a grunion run there. I’ve seen the beach packed with bikini’s and played beach blanket bingo ;-) there. Today I had lunch there...four guys out, not as good as yesterday but still looked fun. It’s history...The gate is going up, the piers are coming down. Could be an artificial reef and a county park by next winter I hear. It won’t be OP anymore. Bummin’
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