All the premiere spots in California are spoken for, unless you're Spicoli and find Lowers deserted and everybody perfect gentlemen, in September no less.
Sage brah, no word of a lie. It was during the Hurley Pro so I'm assuming that all the regulars steer clear from there during that event, or at least most of the regulars. A dozen charging at each of the Trestles spots, not 100. I'm sure it is 100 other times but I must have been fortunate. Not expecting any of the same small crowds there this weekend when I go back. But the swell looks like crap from Tuesday on so we will probably go north. And yeah, the etiquette was great. Really. Could've been that there weren't 100 peeps fighting for peaks but it's not like every peak was to be had solo. You put a northeast aggro with life (not just crowds) attitude in a lineup of mostly kooks who never see what a real wave is, and the EC can easily be full of lineup dysfunction. Not saying there aren't beefs out west, but there's a huge difference of flow and relative harmonic function across a group of people with proper experience versus not.
idk, as far as most spots north of santa barabara, jersey has better shape...that is, when you finally do get swell. We don't have any jetties, so wind and ground swell lines closing out the whole beach are an issue.
Up here, things are relatively isolated, too, so a lot of spots require a long drive and then maybe even a long walk. The water is always cold (4/3 mm) and summer is usually foggy and overcast...feels kinda like winter, actually. Those two, alone, weed out a lot of beginners and tourists.
Mornings are usually relatively calm, but it's also almost always super blown out by noon...expect it to always be at least somewhat onshore and you wont be disappointed. What we lack in shape, we make up for in consistency. Even in summer, most spots rarely ever drop below thigh high...but the tides are so extreme, you'll want a longboard or mega-groveler in the quiver to be able to surf every day.
Tipping the scales, we don't have any special summer parking restrictions/tags, we don't have black balls and you can surf under any pier, any time.
I've had the opportunity to surf all over the east and all over Central-Southern California. I have yet to get totally skunked on my road trips in California, however California makes you pay for waves. Whether it's gas, rent, tax, food whatever, you are raped more consistently then there are waves. The variety of California is pretty awesome, beach breaks, reef breaks and point breaks in many towns. I miss the east though, the best sessions I have ever had were in Rhode Island and face it, there is nothing like the dredging barrels of jersey, cape cod and the outer banks during hurricane season.
MIS-13, so you're telling me that surfing has become such a zoo that El Cap is fair game to anyone. Jesus, they wouldn't even let Sam George surf there back in the day. And he's b!tchen. Wow.............sad, sad, sad........Where are all the tween and teenaged internet bullies going when they grow up? No one regulates in real life anymore.
Spicoli: Actually California's line-up's are the most vicious in the world. Australia? Oh come on, they're cute when they sack up after 40 Victoria Bitters......cute like kuala bears. Brazilians are 3 inches tall(Good lord I'm bigger than Brazzos) and keep their real power in the favelas, where the crack's at. Hawaiians, well, Sunny Garcia is tough guy on North Shore, but some years ago he got the snot beat out of him for mouthing off to the wrong car of LA toughs. That still didn't humble him. He's lucky he didn't get shot.
Anyways, Southern California is home of Amercia's best bullies. Like in the Northeast the new kid in school gets ignored...like totally. Then will get a few snide, cycnical comments thrown his way. This doesn't apply to inner city areas that are full of nut cases. They F with everyone and anyone. I'm strictly speaking suburban here.
In California it's open season on the new kid. I grew up in many different places and California wins hands down for an affinity to F with people. Though, they're mostly bark with no bite. Jeez, I had a 30-year-old man threaten to kill me when I was 10 and riding whitewater in Port Hueneme. Plus, it's also a matter of stats. More people surf in California than anywhere so you're going to have your share of angry mutts.
Oh Spicoli, one trip to San Clemente during a pro event doesn't make one an expert on West Coast surf spots and attitudes. And there's tons of clowns out there too. Southern California is the home of the spring suit, bootie wearing longboarder.
I'm not trying to hassle you, Spicoli, just keeping it real up in tha field. And you should be surfing for at least three years before you even hit Church........five years before Uppers or Lowers...........
Yo, next trip try Seaside, Oregon. And hey, why do you get to go on all of these trips? Are you selling base?
I can surf perfect 4-5 foot barrelling, offshore, beach breaks in NJ with 2-3 good friends and no one else.
That just doesn't happen in California anymore, ever.
More consistent waves, yes. Better surfers, yes. But not always better as far as experiences go.
You also have a massive influx of complete kooks in California because surfing is so damn popular and more part of the surf/skate culture there, especially in Southern Cal. Guys that are just in it for the chicks, or the scene, or to look cool. Guys that you would never find walking through knee deep snow in 5 mils with boots and gloves getting ready to paddle out in 8 foot dredging barrels. Those are the "surfers" I like to associate with. But that's just me.
I love surfing in SoCal, but the overall lifestyle and living standard compared to the east coast sucks IMHO unless you're making close to six-figures ... And if you're job is that good, you're probably throwing your life away in rush-hour traffic rather than surfing! ... Just kidding ... but seriously, to own my own stand-alone house with a yard 10 minutes from the beach, etc., etc. is really, really hard to-do in any populated area of CA without some serious cash ... I'm sure in more rural coastal areas further north that's a lot easier...