Santa Cruz the Soul of surfing, Mendo is The Heart.


   The legend of Santa Cruz is that it is known as the Soul of Surfing. This is true, But there is another place in Northern California that is known as the Heart. That place is Mendocino county aka Mendo that recedes in the upper Northern part of California. Since my teenage grom days in surfing i have been hitting up Santa Cruz during the winters surfing all the epic spots in the Monterrey bay that takes in north, west, and south swells and magically combs the wave from the kelp in the bay to become a super glossy fun wave to ride. I believe Santa Cruz  to have most consistent good waves year around more than any other geographic area in California.  Santa Cruz has birthed many professional surfers, Board designers, and surf equipment companies. In 1885 three Hawaiian princes  came to Santa Cruz and introduced surfing. Since then Santa Cruz has turned into a surf city, competing with Southern California for the title which has birthed the term Santa Cruz the soul of Surfing.

   Now having given you an anthropological surf  view of Santa Cruz I want to talk to you about the Heart of Surfing which is a geographic location known as Mendocino aka Mendo  which is also known as the Cape of California. Mendo has a coastline with many surf breaks It is also referred to as part of the Lost Coast that stretches to Humboldt county. Mendo mostly takes North and West swells. Our water is about 10 degrees colder and on average our waves our always bigger than Santa Cruz. The waves here in Mendo are more challenging to surf and the severity of our ocean conditions brings surfers closer together as when they surf; not only are they having fun, but also being 100% conscious of the ocean, their connection to it and survival. That being said creates surfers who are very friendly.  Anyone who has surfed Mendo knows that the surfers here are very welcoming and accepting. Which is why I believe Mendo itself to be the Heart of Surfing. 


A start up guide 4 the beginner surfer, with love (Courtesy of Photo From Luke Braddock).

Mar 21, 2015

Always remember to check your swell, tides, and winds before you head out to your favorite surf spot. As you continue your epic journey of learning how to surf, you will find that you will become a meteorologist as soon as you see your local spot. You will find yourself putting your finger in the air to feel which way the winds are blowing. Noticing if the winds are offshore or which way the wind is blowing on the waves. Reasoning with yourself whether you should paddle out or check the next spot. Throughout your experience of learning to surf swells that are actually inner volts of energy produced by a storm miles and miles away from your home break. The interesting part about inner volts is imagining what they look like. They are actually circles of energy that are measured by a buoy that travel to the shoreline (your local break). What happens is that when the inner volts hit the reef or sandbar it becomes unstable and turns into a wave breaking on the shore. The amazing thing is that when you learn how to surf you actually get to ride this energy (in the form of a wave). And energy is an amazing thing, especially when you get to ride it.

            Rip Currents (aka Channels) are a really important thing about surfing and can present an amazing challenge if you get caught in the wrong spot. A good channel is very beneficial whenever the waves are head high or bigger. They are able to help you get to the lineup speedily without getting worked as much as some other areas at your surf spot. Learning to paddle and using rip currents is key to becoming a good surfer (90% of your time in the surf session is paddling). You will also find that after a couple of months of surfing your upper body and especially your triceps become huge. This is a good thing, it means that your body has built itself through vigorous paddling to be more durable and strong. This is something that just naturally happens from surfing.  Be stoked and know that surfing will help you with health, healing and most of all; a positive attitude! Learning about the ocean and understanding rip currents are very important and will help you progress and most of all, respect the Ocean.

Learning to surf: Northern California

Dec 10th 2015

There really is so much you can learn about surfing. Not only does it keep you in incredible shape, it also makes you more conscious about our Planet Earth that we live on. It will make you more aware of storms, wind, tide, ocean swells, and much more. Surf Safety in the ocean and how to paddle properly are the first things that we teach. It is important to understand that the ocean is big and powerful; while surfing is one of the most fun things to do, it should also be taken very seriously. The locations that we teach at are mostly shallow waters, so falling properly is taught by our surf instructors. Currently we are teaching up north on the Mendocino coast. With the water being colder in this location we amped up the warmth on the wetsuits we use for teaching. During the summer we use 3.2 mil and 4.3 mil wetsuits with 7 mil booties (aka shoes). During the winter we use only 4.3 mil and 5/4 mil with rash guards and hoods. Warmth is a very important part about learning to surf. The equipment we have for our students is guaranteed to keep them warm. They are going to be having so much fun that they will not notice the water temp. The only thing that will be on their mind is riding waves.


   Furthermore, I want to talk about conditioning for your surf lesson. Surfing relates to snowboarding and skiing when you try it for the first time. Do you remember how sore you here after the first day of snowboarding/skiing? Well, surfing for your first time will be similar but not as extreme. Your upper body will be a little sore after the surf lesson. However, you will have a surf instructor with you the whole time who may or may not be pushing you into waves (depends on your surfing level). Something to consider before you decide to go surfing is checking out your body mass index level and finding out what condition your body is in and making goals to be in the best shape possible before surfing (surfing is a major workout). A side note is that if you learn to surf you have a free gym (the ocean). Make sure that you are a good swimmer and that you can hold your breath for 15 seconds.

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