California Surf Trip

Discussion in 'Surf Travel' started by mgshevs, Oct 14, 2013.

  1. mgshevs

    mgshevs Active Member

    Mar 10, 2013
    Hey guys, me and my cousin are going on a surf trip to San Diego in early November. I was wondering if you guys have any recommendations on surf spots and what to do when we're there. (We're renting a car btw). This is our first time to southern Cal so any recommendations would be great
  2. yankee

    yankee Well-Known Member

    Sep 26, 2008
    zaGaffer is your resource, be nice to him & he might share.

    Whatever else happens out there on the left coast, if you see a white van following you, or if you spot a second vehicle piloted by a dude with latex dummies & a dog in the front seat & he's trailering a gigantic wooden plank that vaguely resembles a surf board .... go like stink for the nearest fire station.

    Have a great trip boyz!

  3. OrthoBrit

    OrthoBrit New Member

    Sep 10, 2013
    What part of SD will you be in? South county or North County (oceanside area). Lots of good spots in SD, a couple I would avoid, but other than that you should have some good things to choose from in Nov. Let me know where you will be and I might be able to suggest a few spots.
  4. dudeclimbing

    dudeclimbing Well-Known Member

    Apr 16, 2013
    Nice! I got a bunch of boys who just left for s. Orange Co. N loving it now for a couple of days. If looking for bigger talk to z-gaff. Me only been there once n was good. Have fun, it's been good lately from whAt I heard from them. IDE be there with them but leaving for PR in a few days. Good luck n kill it!
  5. kidrock

    kidrock Well-Known Member

    Aug 1, 2010
    If you're going in early November, you'll be catching it at the best time of the year. Whether you're in North County or Imperial Beach (IB), it will probably be firing. Water will be 58-60, so you can get by with a 3/2 with booties but a 4/3 probably better.

    Good, consistent beach breaks will be O'side, Blacks, and IB. I prefer La Jolla reefs and Sunset Cliffs, but the LJ reefs (Hospitals, Horseshoe, Big Rock) tend to be shallow and quirky. Cliffs are great at overhead, but cliff access can be sketchy and some spots don't take kindly to unfamiliar faces with leashes attached to their boards. Encinitas reefs are mellow, well shaped, glassy and have easy access. City beaches (OB and MB) can be good at the jetties but the crowds are pretty aggressive. If you have a log, you can't beat Tourmaline in PB.

    If you have a passport, take the trip into Mexico and start hunting from Baja Malibu to K38. There are tons of class beach breaks and reefs between, with almost no crowds.
  6. EmassSpicoli

    EmassSpicoli Well-Known Member

    Apr 16, 2013
    I'll be back there the same time and looking forward to it very much after my first trip there last month. Lots of good info already going around here and there should be plenty more as many SI guys have charged those shores quite a bit. Gaffer's your guy for the depth of info as they've said.

    I hit Lowers three days during the Hurley Pro and would say that's a must do. All the brahs in the know on here always say it's a hundred solid there fighting for peaks and I believe it. The regulars must've stayed away the week of the tourney as it wasn't anywhere near that and rides were to be had throughout sessions. Other than that, I hit up various smaller beach breaks and rock reefs in SoOC that I thought would be less traveled but some weren't. Overall, I was blown away by the functionality of widespread lineup etiquette by most all out there. Makes sense since it's a hotbed of talent and experience.

    Pretty stoked that guys are saying it's the best time of the year to be out there. It was good last month and so needed after the EC flatness. Way faster waves on the Pac and you get better every minute there. Hope you have a hell of a time and you will. Thanks for starting a good thread that is useful to me too.
  7. EmassSpicoli

    EmassSpicoli Well-Known Member

    Apr 16, 2013
    Good stuff, thank you. We are thinking of heading up to NorCal around Santa Cruz for part of the trip. Anything decent for breaks between North County/Malibu and SC we should check out on the way up?
  8. washashore

    washashore Member

    Sep 15, 2013
    Any thoughts on the Carlsbad/Oceanside area? I'll be in that area around this same time (apparently everyone will be there). While not really a surf trip, I'm hoping to get out for a session or two. From what I can tell that section of coastline is just one long beachbreak.
  9. Kooky McLeashless

    Kooky McLeashless Member

    Apr 3, 2013
    Shah, brah... County Line (LA/Ventura Co) is a fun beach break setup with reef at the north end. C Street in Ventura is great, a bit further north. Rincon is a great option north of these. There's some cool stuff around the Big Sur area as well (Sand Dollar Beach, Willow Creek) and around Monterey (Carmel Beach and Asilomar). If you're driving up to Santa Cruz, maybe take a couple/few days and take Highway 1 hitting several of these spots (or skip all that and just book it to Santa Cruz if it's good). The Central Coast is awesome, have fun!
  10. dudeclimbing

    dudeclimbing Well-Known Member

    Apr 16, 2013
    Hey. Z. Thanks for making me famous for my stash! I never knew ya liked it so much!
  11. dudeclimbing

    dudeclimbing Well-Known Member

    Apr 16, 2013
    Yo I can't believe it is still in print online. For the rest of ya kooks, it's my only claim to fame. No rides unless ur hot n a gal..
  12. leethestud

    leethestud Well-Known Member

    Aug 12, 2010
    Solid advice right there ^^^ Just note that border crossing is a biatch and a half these days, allow HOURS on the return trip.
  13. SurfingOC912

    SurfingOC912 Well-Known Member

    Dec 13, 2007
    "If you're going in early November, you'll be catching it at the best time of the year. Whether you're in North County or Imperial Beach (IB), it will probably be firing. Water will be 58-60, so you can get by with a 3/2 with booties but a 4/3 probably better."

    I live in North County. The water is 68 degrees currently. Bring a 2mm short arm fullsuit and maybe a 3/2. You'll look like a clown wearing boots and a 4/3....
  14. Sandblasters

    Sandblasters Well-Known Member

    May 4, 2013
    i wouldnt go to California there are people in the line ups with intimidating nick names like... mike shreddog williams. sprayblaster macaurther, saltybarrels, and dont forget cholo-rific, i would hate to get laid out by those hardcore dudes.
  15. DawnPatrol321

    DawnPatrol321 Well-Known Member

    Mar 6, 2012
    Buahaha!!! Nice one
  16. kidrock

    kidrock Well-Known Member

    Aug 1, 2010
    Emass, you can't go wrong in Ventura on the way up. The beach breaks are straight up class. Oxnard and the Strand frequently go off. After heavy rains, the SC rivermouth is a hepatitis freight train. If you have any connections with the proper 411, contact them now and see about access to The Ranch. If The Ranch is out of the question, definitely hit up Jalama State Park. I'd be surprised if it isn't breaking. Reminds me of Blacks somewhat. Too many points to list in Santa Barbara, which is now coming to life (doesn't break during summer). And lastly, blow through SLO. You're better off heading straight to SC, even though you'll have to contend with more crowds.

    You'll notice I didn't mention C-Street, Sandspit, and Trestles because I prefer not surfing in madness. Yes, they can be perfect. So can Swami's. I just don't recommend them. But if you don't mind surfing with 200 other guys, then go for it. If Trestles is going off, then Cotton's or Church is too...without the neoprene speed bumps.

    Also, the North County poster stated that it's 68 degrees right now. Cool! But isn't that kinda rare for mid-October? My bludz down in the Cliffs say the agua is 65-66 right now. I know it's cooler than that as you go further south, if that's your cup o' tea. Let us know if the water stays above 60 in another month. I lived there for 30 years and don't remember ever paddling out in November without booties. Peace and waves....
  17. SurfingOC912

    SurfingOC912 Well-Known Member

    Dec 13, 2007
    High 60's as a water temp aren't rare at all for this time of year. Yes, the water will be above 60 deg in the next month. It bottoms out around 58 in Jan/Feb for north county. Not sure about south county, but I can't remember ever wearing boots here. I've always thought they were optional, but never even considered until JAN/FEB.
  18. wavehog1

    wavehog1 Well-Known Member

    Sep 20, 2013
    Ya, I don't think you're going to need booties and hoodies or a drysuit. Unless you are going up North. Santa Cruz and Monterey is going to be a little colder but its still only November.

    Have to agree with Emassspicoli... though it goes get ridiculously crowded everyone pretty much knows what they're doing and knows when their turn is. Depending on where you go though you may only get a handful of waves. At least its more organized in the line-up then here in Florida. Sometimes I just can't get over the lack of line-up knowledge or rules in which to play by. When I'm out there surfing it reminds me of a bunch of Pakistani taxi drivers. Everybody just goes all willy-nilly at once in every direction blowing their horns and hoping for the best! I think here in Florida though we have much more of a diverse kook to surfer ratio. Also the waves are crappier so the few spots that are breaking get massively crowded.

    Hey man another sweet idea to maximize your trip would be to rent one of the VW vans out there. A lot of breaks you can just camp out in one of those vans. A friend of mine did that and said it was the best way to go! One big advantage was that they were the first ones in the line-up every day wherever they went. There's a lot of different ones out there but here's a link to one of them...


    Sep 17, 2013
    so you are saying he will fit right in with the Cali surf scene?

    I personally would head north, So Cal smells funny
  20. dlrouen

    dlrouen Well-Known Member

    Jun 6, 2012