Punta roca, panama. not really a single wave beating. took a big left and it closed out so i straightened up and tried to paddle back out since the beach was all unknown rock/reef and we were boated in. nearly an hour of paddling with little to no advance. i would paddle ten feet and a wave would bring me back 20, even on a 6'0 chip. when i finally got to the boat over an hour later everyone of the people i came with was worried and some even thought they'd be finding me on the beach or something. i had to get pulled into the boat my shoulders were so torn up. 5 years later and it was worth the 10 seconds of VERY large left i had taken in.
month or so ago i was surfin in Long Island with one of my old cronies from school. it was like head high, and tons of water moving around. not an easy paddle out. got destroyed trying to duck dive a bomb and got sucked over the falls. some how my leash made it around my neck and choked me out while i was gettin tossed around. panicked and sucked in a ton of water. honestly thought i was going to drown right there. luckily my buddy was near me and gave me a hand back to the beach were i puked water up for the next 10 minutes. after gathering myself and kissing the sand a few times i went out and caught the best barrel of my life on the first wave. totally made it worth it
Early last year during Tropical Storm Debby (Gulf Coast of FL)....
I'm still getting my surf-legs under me and i decide to chase this swell. They say it was a once in a lifetime experience here on the coast. I paddled into probably an 8 footer and went over the falls landing face first onto the deck of my board, breaking my nose and knocking me out. I woke up get rolled through the surf. I remember looking down at my board and it jsut being covered in blood. I figured i better get out and quit chumming the beach. I stayed out for about an hour and tried again for a little bit.
7-8 foot Punta de Lobos. Dropped in, set the line too low, took the lip to the side of the neck, and got washed into the inside rocks. Cord snagged and the sweep was still yanking me down the point/inside so I was pinned on rock, couldn't find the leash to pull it, and right as the current slacked a bit the next wave of the set came through like a freight train. The third wave pulled the leash plug clear out of the board (wish the cord just broke instead), but at that point, I was just happy to have a head above water.
Winter, 2008 I think, Indicator on Sunset Cliffs, 4th reef. Was out for hours... Surfline was reading wave faces ranging from 14-20 feet. Got really comfortable after snagging about 5 or 6 14-15 footers.... Sitting outside with some older guys, one of them started saying how we would get clean up soon as the reefs were emptying out with the tide shift... Rouge peaks started swinging in with a little south in it, there were about 10 of us out at that spot... Me and one older guy scraped out as far as we could... I almost made it through and at the last second, realized that this mother was going to break right in front of me... I scraped one last time, got right under the falling lip, that was easily 18 feet, pushed down under water about 7 feet or so, I asctually stood up under water on the back of the board to get as deep as I could... The lip bashed down and caught the back tail of my board... Broke two of my toes from the impact and then I was held down about 20 seconds... I was probably a good 25 feet under sea level... Kept calm and followed the light.... Luckily when I came up, the set was over.... Me and one other guy were still out and the other 8 were just washed in to shore... No one came out for hours after that... Wasnt that bad, but the worst hold down ive ever had.... the thing got me good.... Funniest part of all this, is that when I turned around right before the set came, there were people scraping like 20 yards behind me... And this lady was actually out on a long board... at the last second, she just turned her board towards the beach and laid on it and started to paddle, as a 20 foot set wave detonated behind her... I never saw the end result, but she panicked and must have had to swim a mile back to shore at least... her board was probably toast too.... I was like, wtf were you thinking? Just letting a mountain of whitewater railroad you from behind.....
Other scariest was at La Fonda in mexico. I was surfing alone on the north end by the camp... On my way down the stairs, I saw the best barrel ive ever seen in my life. It look about 6-8 feet and peeled for at least 600 yards. It was like a minute long barrel… I sprinted down to the beach… My wife was with me with a camera to get some photos… I paddled out and was chillin for the most part… What looked from the bluffs to be 6-8 feet was really more like 10-12 foot beach break once I got out… it was low tide and the tide started sucking out when a set came, I almost made it out but I was literally getting pulled back to shore, at the last second I realized I wouldn’t make it through, I just rolled off my board and went limp, dead weight…. Got worked really bad for like a 6 wave set… When that was over, I decided to snag one and go in… I caught probably about an 8 foot left hander, it had a perfect shoulder, I speed checked on the bottom turn and pulled into what looked like a makeable barrel, the thing started racing too fast once I got in it and the thing just detonated on me… Broke my leash and snapped off a fin… The waves were so big that my wife couldn’t see me, she just saw a board flopping around and hit the beach like ½ mile north of where I was… took me about 5 minutes to swim and body surf in. I was about a mile from where I started… I just laid on the sand for a minute. My wife ran up to me in tears… screaming and cussing at me… then hugged me… I was like, hey, sh** happens. You and I both know it looked way smaller from the road!
got closed out on pretty nasty at Sebastian a couple weeks ago. worst working of my life however, was in Haleiwa Hawaii back in 08. pulled in, got closed out on and smacked my goddamn ass on the reef. got friggin urchins in my cheeks and on my feet.