Hi all! This is Bird from Bird’s Surf Shed. Look for updates on all things surf in issues of this publication. I plan on touching on a wide variety of surf subjects ranging from extended surf reports and the latest in surf gear and technology to shaper interviews and some surf gossip. I’ll be glad to answer your questions if I can so feel free to sound off.
Thanks for coming along for the ride.
Let’s talk about the general state of surfing in California right now.
In the near 50 years that I have been in the water, I have never seen a more creative and exciting time in surfing. No, the waters aren’t as clean as they used to be and yes, it’s more crowded then ever, but there are more acceptable waves to ride than there ever have been in the past.
At any given time at almost all breaks, you see a wide variety of people riding waves on all sorts of equipment. Some ride a traditional surfboard or boogie board, while others body surf or ride a Paipo type of board. Hand planes and surf mats are out in the lineup, and let’s not forget about the stand-up paddle surfers. To me, it makes no difference on what you ride, it’s still SURFING.
That being said, we must all share the waves and show respect for one another. Nobody likes a wave hog — no matter what you ride — so give a wave away here and there and show some restraint on your wave count, even if you have the largest surf craft in the water.
If you’re a beginner or new to an area, wait out the crowds or head to areas that are more user friendly until you get up to speed with local crowds and areas.
The bottom line is we are all out in the water to have fun, so let’s concentrate on that. Ride what you want, how you want — and let others do the same.
— Bird Huffman, owner of Bird’s Surf Shed, has been surfing and serving the San Diego surf community since 1966.