A South Bay Surf Season For The Record Books

At the risk of dating myself, I’ve been an interested observer in every good run of surf we’ve had in Manhattan Beach, Hermosa Beach and Redondo Beach since the 1970s. I can confidently say that the last few weeks have been the best 3-week stretch of local surf in my lifetime. Incredibly big, perfect and consistent waves were on offer every day.

On Saturday, I actually passed on excellent triple overhead surf because I was simply too tired from pushing so hard for such an extended run.

While the great run of surf has been interrupted for now by stormy onshore winds, the outlook for the rest of winter and spring is fantastic. Keen observers will have noticed how much smaller the beach is and how scalloped up the shoreline has become. This leads to an uneven ocean floor with sandbars, deep spots and strong rip tides. All of these conditions are dangerous for swimmers and the lifeguards will have their hands full, but surfers dream about this same set of conditions. The unevenness of the ocean bottom creates waves tailor made for surfing. We are rubbing our hands together in anticipation as this type of event only happens every 15 years or so.

All of the photos included were taken in the South Bay (mostly Hermosa) over the last 3 weeks. I took most of them, but additional photos by Chris Frohoff, Bryan Griffiths, Richard Podgurski, Brian Kingston, Scott Funk, Casey Pepe, David Jacobson, and Jeff Miller.

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