It's Never Normal

Sunday was smaller. Karissa caught waves. Waist high. One direction, then the other. There wasn't any wind. It was wonderful. Had a handful myself. More Pepsi than Diet Coke. Clear skies? Not a chance. Pulled into a few that stood six feet, maybe more. Rising up over a sandbar somewhere in the middle. I was out there with some smallboarders. Shocked when the Blue Banana washed up on shore. Sans leash. Brought out a few big bottom turns. Step on the tail, turn with your hips. Put five up front. Like a cat stretching it's claws. Kept my hood on most of the morning. It was kinda cold. Karissa caught a long left. Paddled up to me and said, "It's kinda weird out here." I told her it's never normal.

Russian Circles



What I've been listening to lately...

Cabin Camping

It rained all weekend. A light, grey, sort of rain. Wet when we arrived. No need to camp in that kind of crap. So I rented a cabin. About sixty paces from the sand. A sizable swell rolled in on Saturday. Surfed for a few hours. Lots of lefts. Brought the Blue Banana. Hadn't surfed it since, shit, I don't know. Mounted my new Mikey DeTemple MD3 fin. A marked improvement. More on that later, though. Cabin was cozy. We cooked dinner, watched hockey highlights and fell asleep sooner than I expected.

"He likes it! Hey, Mikey!"

What can I say, I like Mikey. Maybe it's the beard. Or maybe it's because he makes movies that don't suck. Whichever. So when I started looking for a new fin, something for The Blue Banana, Mikey's name was mentioned. The board needed a new fin cause Karissa crushed the one that was on there. And because the Greenough 4C that I recently Finterviewed wasn't what I was looking for. So I spoke with Shawn from Stoke Harvester and he hooked me up with this, a Mike DeTemple MD3 Longboard Fin made by the Rainbow Fin Company. It's a 10" fiberglass fin that looks a lot like the Greenough 4A. Wide base, narrow, flexible tip, a fin "designed to get the most out of your log." Should work well. Oh, and he also threw in a copy of Mikey's first film, Picturesque, which I'll watch and review sometime soon.

Daytona Days



A short bit of film featuring Austin Marvin of Marvin Lmtd. Mfg. Co., courtesy of Tiny-Waves.

The Smokey Joe

I'm in the market for a motorcycle. Something small. Good on gas. So I can ride around town. To and from work. I've had a handful. Everything from dirty dirt bikes to tiny two-smokers. I've been hit by a Land Cruiser, dodged death with Dorian Sleeper on his 'Hill Climb From Hell' and been stuck in the sand somewhere in southern Utah. So I know what I want to ride. And what I'm willing to work on.

Matt 'Cuddles' Cuddihy



Short bit of film featuring Matt Cuddihy surfing somewhere sunny. Shot and edited by Andrew Gough.

Macklemore x Ryan Lewis



What I've been listening to lately...

The Good, The Bad & The Beautiful

Saturday stood up. Offshore wind, seven foot swells, etc. I brought the Bing. A nine-foot Elevator with nothing in the nose. Had a hell of a time catching waves. My friend Chris and his wife Rena camped in our corner. Chris learned to surf in the southeast and is an accomplished Stand Up Paddle dude. He and I had a handful of head high waves. Lefts and rights. Sun finally showed up, albeit late in the day. I surfed for six hours. The last two were worth the wait, though. It wasn't getting any worse.

Sunday was small. No wind when I woke up. The tide was all the way out. I was in the water around 9am. A dozen waves before Karissa collected the Becker. She had one hell of a wave, though. All the way in. Fin in the sand. I finally figured out how to surf that other stick. The Bing. Start paddling sooner, late takeoff, slow and steady rotation, run to the nose. Like a dog dragging it's ass across your carpet, the Elevator won't work unless you walk all the way out. Found my fair share. Good fun.

Probiotic Bread Man

You've probably driven past his pickup. A big cream colored dually with an eight foot tall trailer attached. His name is Ken, but Karissa and I refer to him, affectionately, as 'The Probiotic Bread Man.' He lives near Joyce, just off of Highway 112 with his wife and two sons. Every Saturday he parks his big Chevy just outside of Port Angeles, sets up his trailer and sells probiotic bread and other baked goods.

He uses palm shortening in place of butter, organic evaporated cane juice in place of refined white sugar, he ferments his own grain and sources all of his ingredients locally. Each week he and his wife bake a wide variety of enzyme rich bread, brownies, cookies, pies and something they call a 'stoagie.' He can be hard to find, but when you see his Chevy, or his stand at the Famers Market, be sure to stock up!

Ibérica Skateboards

Ibérica is a Spanish skateboard company based in Barcelona. Developed by two design students, Raúl Arribas and Gonzalo Sánchez de Lollano, each Ibérica board is hand shaped, numbered and named after a spanish woman. Two different boards are being made, the Lola and the Tere, in four different color tones. Ibérica recommends 85mm trucks, soft bearings and tube wheels. Oh, and no "abrasive paper." Clearly they're looking to rekindle our relationship with small skateboards and tight turns. I approve.

The Guayule Kid

"Waves can't be the god of the sport; if they were, we would all live in Hawaii. It has got to be getting out in it that counts -- surfing because you love to surf, and getting pumped full of life and whip and snap. I used to ride junk waves all day long, training for the good moments. You do this, and one day you are sitting out there all alone, waiting for a set, and someone will paddle up and ask how the surf is. 'Man,' you tell them, 'you should have been here an hour ago."

- Phil Edwards

Summer Soon Please

You can smell the summer. Sun, sand and shoes without socks. It's right around the corner. Really. As much as I've enjoyed surfing this winter - overhead and offshore - there's something about summertime. About sun. We had some recently. A few days without clouds. When it wasn't cold. When it wasn't raining. But it all came back. Overcast. Scattered showers. Sonofabitch. I really need to see the sun. I thought I could wait through the winter. But it seems I've succumb. SAD or whatever. I'm overcome with anxiety. I'm ready for something else. Small waves. Sand between my toes. Food cooked over a fire. Cold beers on the beach. All that. I'm curious, though, whether I'll feel excited about the waves. Small, not shoulder high. Slow, not fast. But there'll be sun. Sixty plus. Sounds like I'm daydreaming. About summer.

Sunday Didn't Suck

Saturday sucked. Onshore wind, overhead waves, cold and cloudy. I had a handful, but I had to work way too hard. Sunday, on the other hand, didn't suck. Sun was in the sky. Wind went away. Swells were a little smaller. I paddled out after breakfast. Belly was a bit full. First few were fun. Lots of lefts ;)

Fault Line



What I've been listening to lately...

Motorcycles & Misbehaving

Camped with a few friends from the Frozen North. Motorcycle movie makers from Canada who run a company called Curbsyde Productions. They met us mid-day on Saturday, just before we paddled out. They disappeared into the woods while we surfed. The weather could have been better. Overcast and kind of cold. It was like a big bathtub out there. Better than being at home, though. After a few hours and even fewer waves, we set up camp and cooked dinner. Soft tacos and Session. Probiotic pie for dessert.

Ghetto Pier Log Session



Austin Marvin of Marvin Limited Manufacturing testing out a new log in Daytona Beach, Florida.

48 Hour Window



A few weeks ago, a cold front hit the northeast corner of the United States, leaving our friend Mike DeTemple forty-eight hours to find some fun surf. In this short video filmed by Lisa Myers and Ryan Struck, watch as Mikey makes the most of some cold, clean waves on the East Coast.

GoldCoast Skateboards - The Conflict

GoldCoast Skateboards is a California company specializing in laid-back longboards and other concrete cruisers. Thanks to my friends at Stoke Harvester, I've had the pleasure of playing with one of their newest boards, The Conflict. According to their website, The Conflict is "what happens when you throw things together and the result is greater than the sum of it's parts." A 24-inch long, seven-ply Canadian Maple board that features "a classic Pan shape," 79mm Century trucks and 65mm 'Shred Boots' wheels, The Conflict is both classic and contemporary. Sounds like my kind of monkey business!

Take Home Fish Co.

The Take Home Fish Co. is locate on Woodland Ave in Neah Bay, Washington, a quiet coastal town at the end of Highway 112. It's been there for years. A small, unassuming shop built with scrap lumber on the foundation of an old home. The gentleman that runs the joint, Kimm Brown, is one of the nicest people I know. Kimm spent 30 years as a fisherman, but gave it up to stay at home with his daughter.

According to an article on OregonLive, Kimm buys 30,000 pounds of fish each year, and uses fresh alder found nearby to fuel his smoker. Oh, and Kimm won't cook frozen fish. He once told the Peninsula Daily News that "It's really sad that anyone would have to. It tastes horrible." From humble beginnings, Kimm has built a business known for fresh, locally sourced seafood. It's one of our favorite places, run by one of our favorite people. So the next time you're in Neah Bay, don't just drive by.

Blood Orange



What I've been listening to lately...

Finterview: Greenough 4A

Recently, in part because I have a short attention span, but also because I was asked to, I've had the pleasure of testing a few different fins on my 9'6" Becker UFO - a board with a lot of rocker and "just a tad of nose concave for a smooth rail to rail transition." It's my twin stick. A surfboard I don't care too much about, but seem to surf more often than not. I've tried pivot fins, performance fins, a 2+1 setup and even a small seven-inch single. But now, thanks to some extensive research (and a few recommendations), I think I've found a fin that'll do everything I desire.

Malibuck & The Monday Morning Blues

Monday morning. So much shit to do. Yet I find myself day dreaming about small waves, strong offshore wind, mini-barrels and Malibuck. Saturday was a lot like the last time. Sunny, but a little smaller. Wind was working real well. Offshore in the morning. From the southwest as the sun set. Brought my Banana board. Good thing, as the wind made you work for every wave. Three hours, too many to count, two bananas and a piece of bread, back in the water for a few more. Found my rhythm to right.

CobbleStoned



Short bit of film featuring Dean Petty, a man from Maine, surfing somewhere near Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Korduroy Care Package

A few months ago our friends at Korduroy.TV launched a Kickstarter campaign in order to fund another year of intersting and informative surf shorts. Not familiar with Kickstarter? Well, the way that it works is you, a conscious consumer, aware of Korduroy's inherent value, pledge a certain amount of money to show your support. Think PBS pledge drive without the call center. In exchange, Korduroy sends you a bit schwag - in this case, a 'Digital Aloha' t-shirt, a copy of Cyrus Sutton's latest film, "Freedom to Foam," a handful of stickers and a package of dried pineapple (which I was eating when I took this photo).

The amount you pledge goes toward their total goal. When that goal is met, they take your money and keep on, keeping on. If their goal isn't met, well, it's back to the blackboard. Lucky for us, enough people pledged and now we've got a cool new shirt, some tasty pineapple pieces and something to watch on Wednesday night! Click here to learn more about Korduroy.TV

Wefi Surfboards



Randy Weflen shapes beautiful cedar surfboards using salvaged wood from the west coat of Vancouver Island. This short film by Mark Wyatt documents his creative process and some of the surfboards he's shaped. Click here to learn more about Randy and his company, Wefi Surfboards.

Derek Sparks

Born and raised in the sad state of Oklahoma, Derek Sparks moved to the Pacific Northwest some ten years ago. The proprietor of dSparks Creative, Derek is both a photographer and a graphic designer. He has a healthy appetite for Single Malt Scotch and strange, pig shaped surfboards. I met Derek last summer, and after countless hours around a campfire, he and I have become good friends - sharing strong drink and sizable swells. That said, I asked Derek to describe his feels about surfing, shaping and something he calls the grey stoke.

The Joyce General Store

Joyce, Washington is a small town 16 miles west of Port Angeles and 33 miles east of Clallam Bay. Located on Highway 112 near the Strait of Juan de Fuca, Joyce is one of those places you just drive through, noticing nothing. "Enjoy Joyce at 40 mph" reads a sign on the east end of town. A friendly reminder that there is in fact something there - a small town, founded in 1913 by Joseph M. Joyce. There's a laundromat, museum, self-storage units and a general store.

In business since 1911, the Joyce General Store has, as you might expect, a little bit of everything - gas, groceries, automotive parts, cast iron cookware, candy, cola, Coors Light, you name it. It's also a U.S. Post Office. So the next time you're driving through, stop by and make friendly with ladies selling baked goods out front or listen to the owner play his geetar while he takes your money. It's sort of surreal.

Memo from the Surf Desk: Drinking & Drowning

I'm not one to limit my libations. Drunk bastard? On occasion. But don't drag that shit into the surf. Last summer, maybe Memorial Day, I saw some asshole with a can of Coors in his claw - waiting for a wave. When he finished his Silver Bullshit, he tucked the can into the hood of his wetsuit and paddled pathetically. I shouldn't have been surprised. Summer sends them out. A parade of people. Fair weather wave riders. Kooks. But that's no excuse. Surfing is a sport. An activity that, as far as I am concerned, should be taken seriously. Sometimes.

Now I'm not promoting some kind of sober surfing society. Shit, have a can. But wait. Wait till your out of the water. Until you're having lunch, or sitting around the campfire. And don't drink a dozen. There's no need to be inebriated. Every time I see a sonofabitch out in the water, five cans of crap in their belly, I can't help but hope they go under. It would save them from a future full of clean-and-clear meetings, swollen hands and sour beer shits.

I know, I'm not supposed to say these sorts of things. But do I look like someone that gives a goddamn? And lets be honest, you don't wanna be in their way - that drunk bastard, dropping in, waving their arms around, losing their board. I'm just suggesting you take it a bit more seriously, this surfing stuff. Try to be better. Improve. It's not easy, and you'll suck if you don't surf sober. So stop treating it like a fraternity for drunk dipshits. Have a can of Coke, or whatever, and paddle out to surf, not puke.

Sincerely,

Duke Dangerpants

The Blue Banana

Picked up a 9'6" Harbour 'Banana Model' on Saturday. According to their website, "the original Banana Model was designed in 1963 - it was yellow and just happened to look like a giant banana in the surf. It was unique in that it had significantly more rocker than the typical surfboard built during this era and may have been the first board designed with real rocker."

And while the board does have a bit more rocker than your typical stick from the sixties, it's still fairly flat. At nine feet six inches, my blue banana has an 18" nose and is 22.5" wide. The tail measures 14.5" and it is roughly 3.25" thick. Attached to the tail is a 9.5" single fin made by the Fibre Glas Fin Co.

Cardiff Session



Set to the sound of soulful jazz, check out this video featuring Mick Rodgers, Adam Cap, and Mike Beckwith surfing a menagerie of Bing boards at Cardiff-by-the-Sea. Video courtesy of Stoke Harvester.