Stripes & Strawberries

I just bought a BN Lightweight. Matt Calvani describes it as "an overall lighter, more versatile traditional log with all the noseriding functionality minus the weight." It measures nine feet eight inches long and features a single bass stringer, lighter glassing than their Original Noserider and has a single fin box. Sounds good. But why did I buy this board? Honestly, it all started when I borrowed Matt's BN Lightweight when we were in Mexico a few months ago. It was everything I wanted in the water - fast along the face, trimmed well from the tip and turned like a traditional log. It was wonderful. I surfed everything from four foot peelers to eight foot A-frames. I couldn't help but want one! And I felt like it would be the perfect companion for my Feral Pig.

One evening, after two or three tacos and more than one Modelo, I sat down and drew a surfboard in my Moleskin. I'd brought a jail-striped shirt with me to Mexico, as well as a pair of strawberry red surf trunks. The combination made it easy to see myself in photos and film - pretentious asshole I am. Anyhow, it's what inspired the aesthetic, so when we returned to the States I sent my sketch to Matt's wife, Margaret. She called me a couple days later, asking all kinds of questions. After we'd settled on the number of stripes, the type of tint and how long I wanted my board to be, she emailed me an invoice. Done deal. Fast forward a few months and Margaret emailed me again, this time telling me that my board had been built. A photo followed. I could hardly contain my excitement. It's everything I expected it to be. We're going to So-Cal real soon, and I'll be bringing the board back with me. Until then, follow the link if you'd like to see my new stick.

Tame Impala



What I've been listening to lately...

Holes In The Map



Jen Smith, Mele Saili and Jenna Balester leave the sunny shores of So-Cal and search for surf on their way to the Queen of the Peak contest in Tofino, British Columbia. Brought to you by Hayley Gordon.

Breckenridge Brewery Backpack

Breckenridge Brewery and Topo Designs have teamed up to create a limited edition backpack, made right here in America. The pack, which is based on Topo Designs' popular Daypack, has been widened to fit a full size six-pack and includes a roll-down cooler compartment, coated pack cloth interior and a custom bottle opener made by Machine Era Co.. The whole kit and caboodle will cost you a cool $140. A bargain for such a bad ass backpack. Follow the link for a few more photos.

Andy Bokanev

You meet all sorts of individuals on the internet. Artists, authors, entrepreneurs, overly opinionated passive-aggressive people and a lot of idiots. There are, however, a few exceptional souls. My dear friend Linhbergh, or Slurpee connoisseur, Camden Thrasher, for example. And then you meet somebody like Andy Bokanev. An NYC transplant that swallowed the PNW pill whole, Andy has the attention span of a twelve year old; interested in everything from mountain climbing and canoeing, to craft beer, weird cabins, surfing and stuff made in Seattle.

As a result, Andy has an eclectic collection of film and photos featured on his blog. To be honest, though, I don't know what he does - you know, for a living. But forget that filler. What I do know is that Bokanev spends his Saturdays and Sundays exploring the outskirts of our state, taking fantastic photos and finding some of my favorite music. So with that being said, I sat down and asked, er, emailed him a handful of questions, trying to better understand his inspirations and ideals. Follow the link and take a look at his answers.

Iceland



Short film shot by Reid Jackson, Chris Burkard and Mikey Detemple during their expedition to Iceland.

Sling Shit

Admittedly, I don't have a wholelotta patience. I want what I want, and I want it now. Sorta like the song. It's probably a problem. Surfing, however, has taught me to wait. For waves. For the wind to die down. For the sun to show up. For all sorts of stuff. But for whatever reason, I couldn't seem to sit still this Sunday. We'd spent the better part of the day prior shooting empty beer cans with a couple of sling-shots Bricky had in the back of his truck. I then proceeded to drink ALL of the sangria Karissa had made on Friday, leaving me, well, more inebriated than most. It was windy, though, so I wasn't missing much. Tried to hug the campfire a couple of times. Shameful.

I woke up around nine the next morning - a miracle - made a cup of coffee and tried to shake the inevitable hangover. The wind had shifted from the southwest to the northwest, making a mess out of what waves there were. I tried to be patient, to wait for the wind to die down, but the backside of my head hurt so damn bad I couldn't sit still. Everyone else was willing to wait. We should have. Instead, we packed our shit and hit the road, stopping at Granny's Cafe for a hamburger on the way home. I've had worse weekends. Follow the link for a few more photos.

La Luz



What I've been listening to lately. Brought to you by Bokanev.

Van Diemans Waters



I've really come to appreciate Matt Chojnacki's 'involvement' style of surfing. A throwback to logging's last days, when short sticks and umbilical cords were still somewhat unseen. It's fast, this involvement stuff. Ten steps to the tip. Poised positions on the end. Drop knee cut backs that make Henry Ford's famous photo look, well, lackluster. It's not like we haven't already seen this stuff. But sometimes the second time is better than before. An upgrade! Retro-Mod or whatever. Anyhow. Check out this video, done by Nicholas Damen, featuring Matt Chojnacki and Andrew Warhurst surfing somewhere sunny.

Surf Wagon: Captain Coffey's Econoline

My old man has three vans. THREE. Two of them are four-wheel drive cargo vans, and the other one is a full blown camper conversion. He has a 1977 E-250(?) Pathfinder with a hard sided pop-top roof, a fold down bed in the back and a small kitchenette. He also has a four-wheel drive 1979 E-350 cargo van, what I believe to be a Quadravan conversion. The third van is what you're looking at here - an extended length 1996 E-250 with a Quigley 4x4 conversion.

It is powered by a 351 cubic inch V8 and has barn doors on both the back and the side. It's empty, like a cargo van, but has a headliner. Now, you're probably wondering why the fuck he owns all three. Well, like anything exciting, all it took was the one. The aforementioned Econoline with the hard sided pop-top. It was cheap and exactly what he wanted; a van he could camp in, carry surfcraft and fix himself if he had to. But it wasn't bad ass enough. It wasn't a 4x4.

Work For A Living



Short video from So-Flo surfer, Drew Miller, filmed somewhere in Florida around five o'clock.

"You Missed It."

There's been better. There always is. But I don't care about sixteen foot swells and six second rides. I just like the little stuff. Smoothing sailing on the short and slow. Trying to twinkle my toes. Over exaggerating my turns and trimming toward the top: High & Tight. I prefer to pilot my Bing Pig past people. Cheating five. Jazzing some fucking glass. I'm not interested in anything else. Not right now. Which is why Sunday was so much fun. Just the right recipe. We had stayed up late the night before - charbroiled chicken, pineapple and peppers, plenty of pinot and quiet conversations at Angel's. It went well.

The next morning, Angel made Cuban coffee, apple cider waffles and peppered bacon. It was wonderful. And we didn't give two shits what time it was, or whether there were waves. By the time we pulled in, parked and paid, the wind had stopped working and the waves were waist high. My first few were fragile. It had been weeks since I'd surfed something smooth. After an hour, I managed to take a few trips to the tip. All sorts of unstable. Karissa even wandered her way out there and hung her first five. She was so stoked you could smell it from shore. Good thing Bricky was there to take a few photos ;)

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner



Filmed on the Coromandel Peninsula, enjoy the aquatic adventures of Ian. Made by his brother Matt.

Oven Spoonful

There are plenty of places to eat in Port Angeles... plenty of shitty places. There are, however, a few good finds. I mean, it's a small town, so it's to be expected. But when Bricky and Andy suggested we have biscuits and gravy for breakfast, little did I know that those three little things would change my life. It was winter. We'd grown accustom to grabbing a cup of coffee, eating some cereal and hitting the road as soon as possible - not taking the time to eat a big breakfast or even sit down for a second. So when the boys suggested this biscuits and gravy business, something I wasn't too fond of in the first place, I agreed to go only because we were friends.

Oven Spoonful sits on the south side of East First St. It's small and unassuming. Narrow as you enter, with a long pastry case and an espresso machine at the end. Almost everything is made from scratch. Scones and cookies and quiche and cupcakes. The coffee comes from Cafe Vita and the sausage found in their five dollar biscuit-and-gravy breakfast comes from Sunny Farms in Sequim. Everything is excellent. And our friend Angel is responsible for a lot of it. Which makes me feel all warm and fuzzy... and full. They're open seven days a week, from 7am till 7pm. And along with all their eats, they also sell beer and wine. So if you're in the area and want something better for breakfast, stop by Oven Spoonful, I'll be damned if you're disappointed.

Head Where

These were sort of a surprise. I had planned to make some Peanut Butter Coast trucker caps, but just hadn't made it happen. On Saturday night, however, after more than a few pints of Pinot noir, I was talking to my buddy Bricky about my long overdue idea. Turns out his sister owns a die-cut vinyl and custom apparel shop called Mystery Decals. Late that night, long after I had fallen asleep in Fargo, Bricky and his sister, Joli, printed a few of these here Peanut Butter Coast caps! Hot damn. So, starting next Saturday(?), you can pick one up from me in person, or purchase one through our schwag shop.

Zye Norris



Zye Norris surfing an experimental stick somewhere near Noosa Heads. Brought to you by Deus Bali.

Saponification

You can't count them all. Some days you just don't want to remember. Saturday was that way. Half as good as the day that was yet to dawn. But how were we to know. Beer was on my breath when I woke up, leftovers from a long night at Angel's - Ruthless Rye and candid conversations that lasted late into the evening. We managed to get going early, however. Early being relative of course. There was wind and waves and low tide and apprehension and all that other shit. When we finally settled on a spot - smaller than some of the other stuff we'd seen - only a few people had paddled out. It was alright. Some reasonable rides. Shallow water breaking over round rocks. Unfortunately, the swell shifted just as we decided to call it quits. Cleaned up enough I almost slipped back into my suit. Instead, I sat on shore and snapped a few photos before heading back for a BBQ.

Alex Goes Here



The ever eccentric Alex Knost surfing a 1965 Russell Noserider at 22nd Street in Newport Beach.

From the Phone - Vol.1

I didn't take many pictures this past weekend. I suppose it could have been because there weren't any waves. Or because I was too lazy to pull a big camera out of my backpack - the phone in my front pocket an all too convenient excuse. Whatever the reason, I did manage to add some things to Instagram. It's a great way to get a sense for what's going on. And to make the mediocre look amazing. But for those of you not on the Instagrams, I thought I'd post a few pictures from our wave-less weekend out west.

A Winter Swell



Alessandro Ponzanelli and Dindo Zappelli chasing winter waves. Brought to you by Bing Surfboards.

Spring Fling

I think spring is a good time to get some new shit. Now I'm not talking about all that pastel colored, warm and fuzzy, let's pretend it's already summer stuff. I'm interested in things that'll help me stay stoked. Like a brand new surfboard, or a denim jacket that I can wear for a decade. Or howsabout a wool blanket - something that'll keep me warm on those cold April evenings. Or a proper pipe. You know, for shmokin. Anyhow. I went through my #wishlist and came up with a few things I thought everyone would be interested in. Follow the link for my list.

North to Noosa



The fifth of five short videos highlighting a road trip to this year's 'Duct Tape Invitational' at Noosa Heads.

Gucci Gloves

Here in the Pacific Northwest, a good set of gloves is essential to your survival. With water temperatures barely above fifty degrees farenheit, keeping your fingers from freezing is an important part of surfing successfully. I've tried all types, everything from 5mm five-fingers to 7mm lobster claws with a spot to wipe your snot. But it wasn't until I picked up these Patagonia R5 gloves that I found something which was both warm and and easy to wear.

Compass_ing



Cyrus Sutton is preparing for an epic adventure. Having converted his Ford cargo van into a damn fine domicile, Cyrus plans to surf and explore the west coast for a forthcoming film, which he intends to release sometime in September. You can learn more about Cyrus and his Compass_ing project on his blog, Regressing Forward.

Misconstrued

It sure felt like spring on Saturday. Sixty five and sunny. Offshore wind. After we found some space for Fargo, I pulled out the Pig and paddled out. It was small - head, shoulders, knees and toes. But it wasn't bad. Took a few trips to the tip. Trimmed toward the top. Some smooth sailing. I was in the water from ten till two, and again from three until sometime around six. To say I was tired is an understatement. Angel and her offspring arrived. She brought a bunch of wood in the back of her brown van. I sharpened a few sticks so that her daughter could kill pigeons with the bow she'd made out of a branch. We drank beer and built a big fire. In bed around eleven.

The next morning we drank coffee, ate oatmeal and waited for the wind to stop working. Karissa was kind enough to sew something for me - a shirt I wanted to wear. It was a bit bigger, but all kinds of inconsistent. Unfortunately, when the wind turned off so did the waves. We paddled out anyhow. Found a few fun ones, but decided to call it quits after just two or three hours. To be honest, I was pretty frustrated with my performance. Couldn't seem to surf worth a shit. Oh well. I can't wait for next weekend. Looks like spring done finally sprung.

Devon Howard x Tyler Hatzikian



Devon Howard testing a Tyler Surfboards 9'6 Double Stepdeck with a 10" Greenough 4A fin.

Topo Designs Duck Camo Daypack

Over the years, I've bought a lot of backpacks. Everything from full-frame mountaineering packs to overly complicated carryalls. Some of them have had sternum straps and hydration hoses and stretchy side compartments where you're supposed to put a water bottle - among other accouterments. Honestly, though, I like the simple shit. Something that's comfortable to carry, easy to access and made in America. I suppose that's why I'm so taken with the Topo Designs Daypack; a 22-liter backpack made in Colorado from 1000d Cordura. Lined with a coated pack cloth, Topo's Daypack features natural leather lash tabs, YKK zippers and shoulder straps reinforced with seatbelt webbing.

I've been using this bag for more than six months now. Along with my Topo Designs Duffel, I took it with me to Mexico, Israel and Amsterdam. I've packed it full of camera equipment, a 5mm Matuse wetsuit, my MacBook and all kinds of other stuff. The YKK zippers and paracord pulls keep things secure, and the shoulder straps are strong enough I've carried shit I probably shouldn't have. Damn thing has never let me down. It's at home underneath an airplane seat, or bouncing around in the bed of a pickup truck. It's the perfect pack. And for just $144, it's better than anything you'll buy at REI.