Tuesday, February 07, 2006
Men who ride mountains
The annual (sort of) Mavericks surf contest is happening today about 30 miles south of San Francisco. The waves are huge - some more than three stories tall - and though 24 surfers started competing this morning, only six are left, with the winning heat underway right now.
I have yet to venture to the contest, partially because it's announced a day or two beforehand - after the surf conditions are determined - and partly because the contest takes place about half a mile offshore, and there's only one observation point, and it's a pretty steep hike down.
However, even without seeing it in person - or in person through binoculars - I know the waves are amazing. Imagine a wave - one that's not about to wipe out a small city - that's three stories high. I'm constantly amazed by the surfing on Ocean Beach, and those waves are puddle ripples in comparison.
Actually, the waves along the Pacific are at their peak right now. I don't really know why, but I know the surfers have flocked to Ocean Beach to tackle the waves amid summer-like weather (well, not San Francisco summer, but sunny and warm nonetheless).
So, since most of us can't be there today, which is a pity since the weather is beautiful, the sun is sparkling off of the ocean, and there's only a slight sea breeze, I thought I'd include a photo, ripped off of the San Francisco Chronicle website.