A few weekends ago I was paddling for a wave which was a right. I caught the wave and as I was getting to my feet noticed that another surfer to my left was paddling for it also. I didn't see at first if he made the wave or not since I was already going down the line. A few seconds later I heard him call me off the wave from behind, so I exited the wave. I have heard that priority goes to the person closest to the curl or first to their feet. Normally they are the same thing, but which one is it when it isn't? I'm guessing closest to the curl, but wanted to hear your opinions. I have been on the other side of the situation when I could have caught the wave behind someone, especially SUPers and longboarders who can catch the wave a lot earlier than someone on a shortboard, but I have never took off in those situations.
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Thread: Wave Priority Question
Aug 2, 2013, 07:02 PM #1
Wave Priority Question
Its normally closest to the curl. Party waves are another story where everyone takes off. Malibu is a good example of this. The hard part is when someone looks or says they're going right then decide at the last second to go left. Calling the wave does help but in a crowd? If the other surfer got up after you and is just snaking you after seeing you're alredy up then I'd say its your wave or share it and pull out earlier.
Aug 2, 2013, 07:16 PM #3
i would say in your case, you dropped in on him and you did the right thing by kicking out.
in my mind, both "could" qualify the person to have priority.
but for me, if Im on the inside, closest to the curl and the guy on the outside pops up before I can... than I have shamed myself into losing priority and can only be peeved at myself for missing the wave.
but generally its the guy on the inside with priority.
It's whoever is deeper (closer to the peak) regardless of who drops in first. Usually if the person is dropping in after you and they are deeper than you then they are making a steep late drop, which probably means they have every intention of shredding that section into oblivion.
You did the right thing.
It only gets confusing when it's perfect A framing barrels and you are, for example, deeper on the left but less deep on the right. You gotta talk it out in that situation.
First to your feet is never the rule unless your in a gadget movie.
Aug 2, 2013, 07:36 PM #7
No a gadget movie, inspector gadget. He lived by the rule of first to his feet and look where that got him.
I'll provide a counter-example where First-Up definitely owns the wave. I was surfing 3-4 ft Bells (8 ft faces) in a small crowd of about 20. Bells is a right that breaks waaaay out and rolls in very soft at the peak before it really gets going. I was sitting furthest outside with 3 other dudes, about 10-15 yards past the next group. I picked off one of the bigger ones and rolled in, popped up to my feet and was just passing the inside group when a dude, to the left of me, turns and strokes in on the edge of the whitewater. I was already past my bottom turn and coming back up when he had the nerve to try to call me off. Being the "guest" on the wave, I treated him as respectfully as possible by ignoring him and continuing to surf the wave while he bumped along in my trail.
Moral of the story: Sometimes "closest to the curl" is nonsense. Cheers, mate!
Aug 2, 2013, 11:44 PM #10
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