I was wondering whether anyone who surfs at Long Beach in the winter would be willing to drop some info on me. I've been to Gilgo a few times in winter, but I've only been to Long Beach in the summertime, and never with a board (just body surfing).

I understand the water temps are pretty low, and there are no life guards or beach fees, but I don't know much else of what to expect. I had a couple of specific questions:

* Is the whole beach open to surfers during the winter, or is surfing restricted to certain times/places like in the summer?

* How is the parking situation in winter? Are the rules the same as in summer, with open parking on the street parallel to the shore (Broadway, I think)?

* Are there any special hazards to watch out for?

Also, I figure there are probably some "unknown unknowns"--if anybody has any advice/comments/warnings, at all, I'd appreciate hearing about them.