I grew up surfing the mid 80s neon suits and new thrusters in the central nj coast. The line ups would get crowded but it seemed most people knew or recognized each other( not neccesarily liked each other). By the early 90s crowds thinned out. I would surf solo in the winter waiting for someone else to paddle out. Around the turn of century surfing popularity started growing again and hasnt stop since. A lot easier to surf yr round now w new suits. Well i just hit 40 still going out couple times a week if swell and still stoked and ridin a 6ft CI. So I ll still be here when surfing is uncool
"There's always someone gnarlier north of you" Granted wetsuit technology has come a long way, there are PLENTY of EMPTY places to surf miles from NYC and especially Boston, most of us (including myself most of the time) are just too lazy. Nevermind looking north to Canada!
What I've noticed over the last 25 years or so is you have spikes in popularity, usually driven by a movie or TV show (from Gidget all the way to Point Break up to Blue Crush) and/or some sort of evolution in gear design or technology (pop-outs, thruster, wetsuits that don't leak, Surfline.com, Surftech/Tufflite etc.) but then inevitably the faddists get to a certain skill level and lose interest in favor of the next thing that Outside Magazine tells them is cool -- or much more likely, they fail to get past the learners stage and give it up.
but then inevitably the faddists get to a certain skill level and lose interest in favor of the next thing that Outside Magazine tells them is cool -- or much more likely, they fail to get past the learners stage and give it up.
agreed- we just gotta endure and stay above it! the weather!
Yup. The flash in the pan has been chugging along for 50+ years. Ebbs and flows at times but believe me there were some real crowds back then but more places to hideaway and so many areas around the world were uncrowded. There is NO modern surf culture -- it is all advertising and corporate. Overall population growth during the past 50 years is another major contributor to crowding.
When non-surfers cruised the beaches with boards racked on top of their cars, wearing huaraches and hang ten shirts "surfing culture" had become mainstream. That was back in the mid-60s, if not sooner.