Recent Happenings

 

Newport's JG's Monster Mile, Aug. 2012

Run from Balboa Pier to 10th St. and swim back. Can you do it?

 

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The typical beach scene at "The Point" during every Hurricane swell...

Or it's the 2012 California Junior Lifeguard Championships. Last week in Newport...

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July 4th, 2012

The Good

The Bad

And the Strange & Ugly.... 4th of July in Newport

 

Now safely go celebrate... In Newport

(photo copyright Tom Cozad)

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Violated

For the last few years Analog Clothing has done good in Newport. Led by Newport's Geoff Moysa the company has taken it upon themselves to fully sponsor some of the best surfers in Newport. They have also supported at length the NHHS surf team. And every Summer, they have orchestrated a weekly beach cleanup and handed out free donuts and coffee on Thursday's, in the Upper Jetties area. Yesterday the city of Newport presented Analog with their certificate of appreciation for all the good that Analog does. Read award recipient Geoff Moysa's account below.

By Geoff Moysa

"We showed up at 7:15am... Setup the Analog tent like we always do and then started picking up trash. There was 6 of us to start with. We cleaned from 52nd-56th. I personally filled up half of a 5 gallon bucket. We then just stood under the tent since it was really misty out, and we ate donuts, drank coffee and greeted people as they went by. Around 8:15 someone from the city showed up, and asked who had put our gathering together. They took me aside and told me that they had complaints about the Analog tent being on the beach. And they told me that we couldn't give away free coffee and donuts, because it was a health violation. They said though that they were just going to give me a warning,"

"I was ok with that, and I started to break down everything. Minutes later, they changed their minds and decided to write me a citation for representing a clothing brand without a Newport business license. And they argued that there was no signs of us cleaning the beach"

A company that sponsors a number of local surfers. Hands out free goodies to the public. Promotes camaraderie amongst surfers on the beach. And goes out of their way to help keep our beaches clean... And this is how the City of Newport shows their appreciation, with a ticket... Absolutely Ridiculous!!! Thanks Moysa, and Analog, for all that you do in Newport.

Analog's Certificate of Appreciation Ceremony. Yesterday in Newport.

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After barely getting into the event. Newport's very own Daniel Shea cleaned house and won the VQS World Championships airshow last weekend at 54th. Being up on that podium was long overdue. Congratulations!

Daniel, nearly a decade ago, putting it on edge in Newport.

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For images of the Balconies Halloween Surf, click the links below...

SolSpot.com

O.C. Register

NewportSurfShots.com

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Tsunami Advisory 2011

The City of Newport called all residents at 4am with a recorded message regarding a Tsunami Advisory.

An advisory is a suggestion to stay away from the shore because of the likelihood of strong currents.

It is not a call for evacuation.

Newport Beach Elementary canceled school for Friday

Newport lifeguards cleared the local beaches.

Tsunami Watch 2011 At The Beach Ball, Friday Morning.

Click the photo for info on how to help those that had to deal with a real Tsunami in Japan

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You might have heard about it, or maybe not. Last Thursday a minivan with 4 Taiwanese tourist pulled onto the Balboa Ferry at Balboa Island. They pulled up to the front railing of the rig and stopped. A Mercedes was behind them, and the driver of it hit the accelerator and not the brake, and plowed into yhe minivan, sending it through the railing and into the Bay. The minivan floated for a short while, and luckily all the passengers scrambled out of it before it sank to the bottom of the bay. The Mercedes front wheels end up hanging over the front of the ferry, teetering, and nearly also falling into the Bay.

Thirty plus years ago. The ferry had no stop and go light signaling when to drive onto it, as it does now. Late one night, during an extremely low tide when the ramp falls vertically down towards the water, and you can't see the ferry from the street... A drunk driver assumed the ferry was sitting there waiting for cars, and he raced up the ferry driveway, and down the ramp, into the water. I can't remember if the guy died or not, but either way, it was not good. Soon after they put up the gate that is still there now.

Cars don't float... in Newport

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The man who would not be President

When John Kerry was the Democratic nominee against Republican George W, Bush he was in the Orange County area for a political event. One Saturday, there was a solid West swell running, and a strong Santa Ana Wind started up at sunrise. Senator Kerry had been a long time Windsurfer (and later an avid Kitesurfer) and asked his staff to take him down to the ocean to view the surf and the accompanying strong winds.

The Senator arrived in Newport mid morning, and like the rest of the Blackies crew, just sort of hung around, with his security staff nearby, on the wall. Eventually word spread of his presence, and he was more than happy to answer a few questions and pose for photos. He lost the Presidential nomination soon after.

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Senator Kerry with a few random admirers. @ Blackies...

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OCC Surf Team Reunion

The National Champion OCC Surf Team between the years 1978 - 1982 held a reunion at legendary surf coach icon Laird Hayes home last Saturday. Many from the team showed, and a good time was had by all. Old school Newport surfers will recognize Newport surf legends Thom McElroy, Alan Lopez, Reese Udal and John Gothard, among others in this photo. The younger Newport crew, will have no idea who anyone is.

After 30 something years, Laird is retiring, and is currently conducting his last surf class for Orange Coast College. The end of an era for sure.

30+ years worth of local surfers are truly grateful to Coach Laird Hayes for his dedication to us and the sport of surfing.

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Different Year. Same Story.

July 4th, 2011

The city put in a valiant effort of trying to give West Newport back to it's residents. And a parade and carnival for local families was a huge success...

With scorching inland temps, and the heat from the police on Balboa Blvd. Many retreated to the beach. Where some believe it was one of the most crowded beach days on record....

People still showed and screamed out their beliefs, but still no one seemed to care...

The city still had a lot of out of town officers on staff for the day. And yea, a lot of people still went to jail...

And with all the police presence and the city's media scare, some still merrily stumbled up and down the streets this 4th of July with their drinks in hand.

 

A small slice of Newport, July 4th, 2011

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Peninsula Pride's DodgeBall 7 went down last Saturday. And Lower Jetties based team Shock Em walked away the victors.


A member of team Shock Em, winding up to take out another one of the Mutt Lynch B%tchs.... Last Saturday.

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Monday, May 16th

VQS 2011

Winner of the Pro-Am division.

Newport's Andrew Doheny... Enjoying the fruits of his labor.

AND

The Volcom Motley Crew... Celebrating another successful event.

(Photos copyright Tom Cozad)

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Newport Harbor students on a mission to make our oceans and beaches a cleaner place... Yesterday in Newport.

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Hotshot. April 1st, April Fools Day 2011

Adopt A Can

The city has gotten complaints about their new beach trash cans. Most recently a local paper featured an article about them, whereby Nicolai Glazer and I voiced our dislike for the trash bins.

To further increase revenue the city has now come up with a good idea however. They are implementing an Adopt A Trash Can program. For a yearly fee of $45.00 you can adopt, and then place your very own logo or design on one of the city's 58 beach trash cans.

Analog has officially adopted the first can, at 54th St. The Blackies Classics Surf Club is adopting 22nd Street's., and word is a crew of guys from Newport Island is planning on adopting 36th steet's trash bin.

If you, your crew, or company would like to Adopt A Can, you may obtain an application by sending a request to the email below. Hurry however, as the cans will go fast... Good luck.

adoptacan@yahoo.com

Coming to a beach near you.

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The Ghetto Juice Airshow sponsored by Sanuk

No giant promotions, no fancy announcers, no elaborate tent city, no big budget circus...

Yesterday's event consisted of just a crew of international guys, who love busting airs and wanted a shot at $1,000.00, and

bragging right. And due in part to the age of "Social Media" the word about the event spread, and was very well attended.

In this day of big brand events, you don't get more grassroots than yesterday's contest. Hats off to Ghetto Juice and Sanuk,

And a huge thanks to the Newport Beach Lifeguard Department, who could have shut the thing down at any time.

Airshow Winner Mason Ho... Busting for dollars

Monday, Dec. 27th, 2010

 

Where does Frosty, Rudolph, and Santa go on Christmas Day?

Bar hopping in Newport...

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Thursday, Dec. 23rd, 2010

Storm Watch 2010!!!

Paddle Surf Warehouse's Mike Rogers and Brad Liberator survey the area...

 

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Wed., December 22nd, 2010

Newport is sinking!

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Tuesday, Jan. 18th, 2010

Harbor closeout

Big, cold, bumpy, unsurfable, and under the watchful eye of the Harbor Patrol... Yesterday

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Monday, Dec. 7th, 2009

Blackies Classics surf club had their yearly membership surf contest, "The Buffington", last Sat. @ Blackies. Click the image below for photos of the event by Blackies surf photog Dave Manning.

The "Monkey" award this year (alias the bonehead award) went to Tony LeMenzo, who wore his contest jersey as a diaper.

Tuesday, June 9th, 2009

NHHS held their prom at Dana Point Aquarium last Sat. Many of them gathered at various places and headed down the coast in buses for the big night out. Below is one group students that attended. Right click the photo if you'd like to save it.

NHHS Prom 09

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Monday, May 18th, 2008

Warning... This has nothing to do with surfing... but it could save you money

At .99 cents a song, itunes is pretty much the website of choice to buy music. A Ukrainian nurse however recently told me about a popular Eastern European music purchasing site called MP3SEARCH.com that's located in Russia. Popular Western songs can purchased for around 9 cents each. And entire albums for only one or two dollars. The site has been around 5 years, and according to her is legit

To check the site out, click the photo below, and please Goggle MP3SEACRH.COM to learn more about it before you decide to use it. If you go the pay route, and purchase a lot of music, using the site might save you money.



Skip Snead, excited he can save some money!

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Wed., May 13th, 2009

Under cloudy skies and a slowly rising windswell, Newport shaper "Dano" completed his Surf - A-Thon for his good friend Jay Thomas. Averaging one wave every 1.5 minutes, Dano surfed 80 waves in 2 hours, and then drug himself to the beach.

Click the photo below for the story, and a slideshow. Plus check out Laylan Connelly's article about the event in today's O.C. Register.

And please call 949-515-8455, or email Jay's brother James at jtgdshc@yahoo.com, if you'd like to give a donation.

Dano, surfing for a friend... yesterday @ Blackies

Monday, June 8th, 2009

For info. on Peninsula Pride's 5th Annual DodgeBall Tournament click photo below....

Serious Competition, Saturday @ Peninsula Pride's DodgeBall Tournament

Monday, June 15th, 2009

Bikers and surfers, groms and legends, shortboarders and longboards... Everyone came out Friday night for Dano Surfboards 25th Anniversary party, and was treated to free drinks, music, art and a look at some of Dano's well crafted surfboards.

To see a slideshow of the event. Click the photo below, Click the Album Dano's 25th, and click Watch & Edit dotphoto show, and full screen. Additionally right click any photo if you'd like to save it.

Also click O.C. Register to see their slideshow of the event...

Young and old legends alike, Friday night @ Dano's 20th Anniversary Party

3 days that will be remembered..

It took 6 days of planning! Shoot a big Southern Hemi swell from Malibu to Trestles in the morning. And the Hobgood brothers charging big Wedge in the afternoon. All from the air.

But then the morning of the mission dawned with light fog and gray skies. So we never made it to Malibu. And the Hobgoods couldn't find parking at the Wedge and they never made it into the water.

None the less it was possible to capture a number of interesting images during the flights. And while I was a little bummed that I didn't capture a lot of surfing, Bill Sharp said something that put it in perspective. "Who cares about surfing when nature is getting freaky?

Click the image below to view the recent swell from the air. And see a few images of the freaky things nature can do during a big swell...

Flying fast off the bottom... @ Lowers....

A glimpse of the jetty through the whole...

Click the image above for a slideshow of the recent Souther Hemi...

Lines poured in... and

(Photo Copyright T. Cozad)

The Wedge was ground zero... and

Click photo above for a link to a video

(Photo Dale Kobetich's "SkyPolePanoramaCam )

everyone from Tom Curren to Jamie O'Brien showed up to surf it... and

Click photo above for a link to swell photos

(photos Copyright Cozad)

Brett Simpson and Kai Barger cleaned up at the U.S. Open Men's events, and

Click photo above for a link to photos

(photo by Dave Manning)

Courtney Conlogue and Malia Manuel cleaned up at the U.S. Open Womens' events, and

(photos Copyright T. Cozad)

Click photo above for a link to photos

the "Phantom Man" showed up in HB, did a big air at the pier, and then gave his board away...

(Photo Copyright Cozad)

Monday, Nov. 2, 2009

Blackies Annual Halloween Surf Event, held last Saturday, made the leap this year from a small local gathering, to a large, well orchestrated, extremely well attended event. Click one of the links below to see images from the event. And if you'd like to add your link of photos, please send the URL.

O.C. Register

NSS.com

Dave Manning

The Ugly, The Beautiful and..

The Strange... Last Sat. at Blackies

9-11

Driving down Balboa Blvd., or from just about any second story building between the Balboa and Newport Pier... You undoubtedly have seen it. A huge 50ft by 80ft flag hanging from a crane in the parking lot of the American Legions on East 15th and Bay st.

Dave Whittaker has traveled with the flag across the country to raise awareness of Veteran's issues. Today, 9/11, he says he's proud to display the mammoth size flag in Newport.

Click the photo below for a short video about Mr. Whittaker's mission...

Dave Whittaker brings his stars and stripes to Newport

(photo Copyright Cozad)

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Newport's Sand Replenishment Project 2009

Discussions in town about what impact the Newport Sand Replenishment Project will have on the surf has begun, as it should... Obviously nobody in town wants to lose even one surf spot. The bottom line is, although the city appears to be doing everything it can to preserve the quality of surf in Newport, no can say exactly what the altered beach and bottom contour will do to the surf once the project is completed.

That being said... The beach is eroding in the Jetty fields and something has to be done about it, the Army Corps of Engineers is giving the city money to replenish the sand there now, and will not be coming around with a hand out again anytime soon. And this project is without a doubt drastically better than the ridiculous proposal the city tried to implement in 2004, that of filling in the jetties with sand and sediment.

If you have any concerns with the city's current proposal, please voice them to the Asst. City Engineer, Mike Sinacori, at 949-644-3342. NewportSurfShots will continue to follow the project and do all that it can to disseminate information as it becomes available.

Newport's Sand Replenishment Project

Bill Sharp, Lorin McGregor and myself met with those in charge of the city's proposed Sand Replenishment Project Monday morning. The project, planned to begin Monday Feb. 23rd, consists of removing 120,000 cubic yards of sand contained between River Jetties and 58th st. (called the "Borrow" area), and depositing it between the 28th and 48th st. Jetties (called the "Fill" area).

The Replenishment project entails cutting a wedge of sand from the beach. This cut into the sand will start just inland from where each lifeguard tower currently stands. And the cut will extend out into the nearshore surf line, with the goal of maintaining the current existing slope of the beach. Additionally, the sand spit currently inside the River, or "Dog Beach", will be removed.

This sand from the "Borrow" area will then be trucked to the "Fill" area, or that area which extends from the 28th st. to the 48th st. jetties. As the sand is deposited throughout this "Fill" area, and the beach is elongated, the current slope of the beach will again be maintained. No sand however, will be deposited directly onto the jetty.

The project is projected to take approximately 4 - 6 weeks, and run throughout the day. During that time ocean access will not be restricted. There will however be a roped off area running along the beach. It is within this roped area that there will be two lanes of truck travel. One lane for northbound trucks, one for southbound. Every so many blocks there will be a break in this roped area, it is here that passageway to the ocean will be permissible.

The project has been accepted by beach watchdogs Dave Granoff, a respected River Jetties oceanfront resident, and Jim Brooks, a respected 53rd st oceanfront resident, as well as TK from the Froghouse. Our group's general take on the project is that if it is carried out as planned, it will provide the much needed sand throughout the Jetty Fields, while minimizing any negative impact to (and possibly even improving) the surf in the Newport area. One positive aspect of the plan is that those in charge of the project are surfers from the area. And it is obvious that the preservation of Newport's surf was taken into consideration when the project was designed.

Information about Newport's Sand Replenishment Project will undoubtedly come out in local newspapers soon, as will a flier from the city. If there are any changes in the current plan they will be reported here. Please check back for images of the project once it begins, and as it progresses.

For more info. on the project click the Public Works Department link below

Newport Beach Sand Replenishment Project

This image was taken at high tide... If you draw an imaginary line between the lifeguard tower on the North side of River (red dot), and run it to the beginning of the 56th st. jetty (red dot). That sand to the left of the line, including sand that runs into the surf, is approximately what the city is moving during their project.

(photo copyright cozad)

The "Borrow" areas between River and 58th St. with the approx. beach grades and how they will be maintained..

The "Fill" areas between 28th st. and 48th st., with the approximate beach grades and how they will be maintained....

Sand, you gotta have it... in Newport

Feb. 27th, 2009

Week 1

The Army Corps of Engineers, the workhorse of Newport's sand project, are behind a week getting started. The city wisely used the time this week to bring a tractor and truck in and clean the beach of all of the large debris near River. The city's hope is that the project will be up and running next week.

Check back here for a progress update towards the end of every week.

Sand & Surf... in Newport

 

 

Friday, March 6th, 2009

The Army Corps of Engineers are 2 weeks behind schedule with Newport's Sand Project because...
(Choose One)

1. The Army Corps got lost
2. The Army Corps stopped for a beer, in Vegas.
3. The Army Corps is a large bureaucratic organization that moves very slowly.

In actuality...
The Corps recently hired a contractor that is beginning to install safety fencing around the project. That should take a couple days.

The city then expects the contractor to move in their heavy equipment this weekend, with the actual sand moving work to begin the middle of next week.

Stay Tuned....

Local Newport surfer Ryan P. and his daughter Tauren, excited about sand!

 

End of Week 2...

Newport's sand project is obviously in full swing. The first day the sand was dumped between the jetties, in the middle of the beach. Newport Beach Maintenance Supervisor, and local surfer, Tom Anderson, immediately noted to the contractor that the shape of the beach between each jetty was to be that of a crescent formation. And from then on the sand was dumped to the immediate north and south of each jetty, to facilitate the tractor in shaping the beach in that crescent shape formation.

With the little bump in NW windswell on Wed. I paddled down and surfed foggy 28th st. alone, and while the break hasn't been transformed into a "Super Bank", it appears the extra sand hasn't messed with the break for the worst either.

Asst. City Engineer Mike Sinacori, also a local surfer, says he, Tom Anderson, along with the lifeguards have been spending a lot of their time overseeing the sand project, and that the contractor has been good to work with. Mike says they met with the Army Corps of Engineers yesterday to refine the plans of the project, which will make it even better.

So for now... all appears ok. Keep checking back for updates... and try not to get run over.

Run! in Newport

Walking amongst the awaken Beasts... Tuesday in Newport

Finished!

The yellow beasts are finished. Newport's Sand project is completed. While the tractors still have a small of amount work to do slopping the beach in the 40th street areas... The orange fences area coming down today, and the yellow beasts are awaiting their trailers home.

While the relocation of sand in Newport unfortunately didn't produce a wave similar to Kirra, it also happily didn't produce a wave similar to Balboa Pier. The city's project, in conjunction with the Army Corps, was a success, and a huge thanks is in order for Asst. City Engineer Mike Sinacori, and City Maintenance Supervisor Tom Anderson for looking out for the interests of the local surfing community throughout the project. Also a big thanks to those local surfers that kept a watchful eye out for any untoward impact to the existing local surf breaks.

The city will be back at it again, moving sand around, in another 5 to 8 years. Word is that they're thinking of extending the sand replenishment areas towards Blackies, and up to 52nd St. at that time. The local surf community looks forward to working with the city again, and being involved in any additional projects.

The Beasts... are heading home

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Wed. April 15th, 2008

"ECHO BEACH"... The Movie

The makers of the movie "ECHO BEACH" are pleased to announce that it will be appearing in the Newport Beach Film Festival on Tuesday, April 28th at 7:30pm. They have a limited number of VIP tickets available, which include a Pre-party, an ECHO BEACH T-shirt, and a limited edition poster, all for $25. Please email info@echobeachfilm.com for details.

Furthermore, on Friday, May 1st and Saturday, May 2nd there will be a local weekend premiere of the film at the Elks Lodge in Lido Village. Tickets are $10 (with a $5 grom show on Saturday). There will be several showtimes to choose from that weekend. This will be a chance to see the film before it goes on its summer tour. There will be a bar at the Elks, and a mega raffle, supported by all the top surf brands.

Additionally, as if the above wasn't enough, that Saturday there will also be a Street Party at 413 31st Street, with live music, an
art show, sponsors booths and festive activities for the entire family.

For more info, a movie trailor. and up to the minute news on the film release, visit the website by clicking the photo below...

Jeff Parker, still ripping "ECHO BEACH", minus the pompadour haircut, the neon colored wetsuit and the WaveTools surfboard...

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Dec. 9th. 2008

They buzzed the local line-ups, wishing everyone a Merry Christmas.

And then visited the local schools...

Mr. & Mrs. Claus, flying without the reindeer.

Yesterday in Newport

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Injured

Lyle Davis has been a local Newport surfer for decades. And with his 4 sons also surfing, there always seems to be at least one of the Davis clan in the water somewhere in Newport.

On Tuesday morning Lyle set out to grab a piece of the recent swell. He was off 44th St groin, when a set approached directly in front of the jetty. Lyle paddled hard to get into it, and as he jumped to his feet his experience told him that the wave was going to back off and slam into the jetty. It was to late however, Lyle was committed.

Word from surfers out that morning was that his body slammed full force into the flat rock that lies just beneath the surface on medium tide. Lyle remembers seeing the rock, and trying his best to brace himself for the inevitable impact, and impact he did. While the second wave of the set took him under, and washed him through the jetty.

When Lyle surfaced it was evident to everyone in the line-up that he was seriously injured. Without hesitation the string of guys out surfing quickly banded together and went into action to stabilize his neck and get him safely to shore. Word is that because of the strong surge near the jetty it was a difficult endeavor.

Lifeguards, paramedics and ambulance were summoned and the crew of surfers, unfamiliar to Lyle, and many unfamiliar to each other, did what they could to reassure him and keep him talking as he drifted in and out of consciousness. With the back of his wetsuit ripped open, severely injured ribs evident, and an obvious mangled knee, coupled with the fact that Lyle was having difficulty moving his toes. The crew was more than a little rattled as the ambulance sped off to Hoag, and they resumed surfing.

Miraculously Lyle, while in pain, is doing well and recovering at home. Three completely severed ribs and a badly injured knee is the final outcome of the incident. And while his anticipated recovery is a lengthy 12 weeks, Lyle realizes that he is incredibly lucky that his injuries are not worse.

Talking with him yesterday, he'd like to give his extremely heart felt thanks to every surfer that morning that helped him by getting him safely to shore, and providing him support until further help arrived. If anything comes of this he says, "Is that while we constantly jockey each other for position in the water, when something like this occurs, it's comforting to know that your fellow surfer is there for you. Ultimately he says "It's all of our duty to watch over each other when in the line-up."



This might not be such a good idea...
Randy Fox in Newport

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Monday July 7th, 2008

Due to the large presence of law enforcement again this 4th of July, Newport remains in one piece. The general consensus is there were more people than usual roaming the streets, but they were mellower than usual. Undoubtedly if you were in town you had a great time... unless you were arrested.

Ok, the 4th of July is behind us. Now let the hurricane season begin...

July 4th, 2008... in Newport

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July 23rd Wed.

There'd been a alot of surf in Mainland Mex over the past few weeks, but alot of weather to go along with it... While traveling around Mainland during that time we'd heard Southern Mex was booming. The area where these photos were taken got the fringe of each swell. Solid surf, but not the 20ft we had heard of far South.

Our Mainland Mex search vehicle...

The rewards of our Mainland Mex search...

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EarthQuake

First off I apologize for when the "Daily Hotshot" sounds like a blog. It's not meant to be a blog, it in no way should be a blog and I try for it not to be a blog! That being said the following story is kinda interesting, so I thought I'd share it.

Yesterday my wife and I took the kids to surf the reform at River. I looked at my watch around 11:30am and figured it was time to head in. While walking up the beach we saw a couple dolphins leap really really high into the air... Yea I know, big deal, Everybody has seen dolphins jump out of the water... but they went about 10ft into the air, and then they did it again, and then a third time... I was pretty mesmerized by it and mentioned to my wife that "I've seen dolphins leap out of the water for years, but I've never ever seen them go straight up and that unbelievably high"!

Minutes later when we got to the car, a guy pulled up that looked kind of shell shocked. He asked if our cell phone worked... and if we had felt the earthquake a few minutes earlier, which we hadn't.

Now I know nothing about animal behavior and earthquakes... but you have to wonder. Did the dolphins leap into the air like a super charged rocket because they sensed the earthquake was about to happen, or because it was happening, or was it just a coincidence? You got to wonder...

Getting air... in Newport

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NewportSurfShots received so many classic emails on April Fools day from people complaining about it supposedly being sold...

NewportSurfShots was sold???

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April Fools Day 2008

After months of negotiation NewportSurfShots.com has finalized its agreement to join the O.C. Register News Corporation. According to a News Corp's press release "We have been looking to expand our print and online coverage of beach activities in the Newport and surrounding beach city areas, and we feel NewportSurfShots.com is the perfect online fit to help us accomplish that goal.

After today NewportSurfShots will be accessible only through the O.C. Registar website and will be focusing on local beach activities other than surfing.

A really fun thing to do no matter what beach you're at is "Sand Sifting". It's a really relaxing past time for many, and often times you can find some really great stuff!

For a list of vendors that sell "sifting" equipment, and to read a brief history about this fun activity, check the O.C. Registar website, and today's Leisure Section of the O.C. Registar Newspaper.

"Serious Sand Sifting"... in Newport

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Crime in Baja

Milano Walker is a kid originally from the States, who's family has moved to Baja. They live in Las Gaviotas, a small private community south of Rosartio, that is rich in fun surf. Milano says there aren't a lot of jobs for high school kids in the area, so he's started a business taking photos of visiting surfers. If you're ever in the area, and want a few images of yourself surfing, please get ahold of him... surfrat91@cox.net

One question that's on a lot of people's mind lately is... Is Baja safe? Many have heard about the 90% reduction in tourism, the kidnappings, the car jackings, and the brazen drug cartel shootings in broad daylight. Milano sheds some light on the situation.

"The crime has been a big concern down here, because a lot of people are canceling trips to Baja. Two of our neighbors are property managers, and it's been one of their worst years for rentals ever, but honestly the media has played up the drama as much as possible. People here are beginning to forget about the violence that occurred earlier in the year, and the truth is there are plenty of places far more dangerous in California. As long as you don’t make yourself a target while in Baja, no one will bother you.

What was happening is that there was a change in government power in late December, and when that happens the cartel starts acting out as the old police chief and governors are on their way out, and the new government is coming in. This then continues until about February when the new administration is able to get control of the situation. There was an article in Transworld Surf that put out the statistics behind the recent crime wave. I’m not exactly sure what the order was but I know countries like Costa Rica and Indo were reported to have much higher crime rates.

Most people that are getting attacked are people driving their Escalades or big trucks with a couple dirtbikes on a trailer, or the lone member of a surf caravan that falls far behind. The main things to remember are that people are being robbed not killed, and generally speaking not physically harmed. People are only being targeted at night, and only in areas where there are no witnesses. The cartel knows that the second they start killing people or attacking in broad daylight, it's over. The Government will come down on them so hard, that they won’t know what hit them. Two people associated with our community have been car jacked. One drove upon a car jacking on the way to their home up in the hills and their car was taken, and another was robbed on their way back from Cabo when they were pulled over in their Escalade around 2:00 a.m.

I don’t want to try and persuade people to come to Baja against their own conscience, but the facts are facts. The Government and Military are good guys, and they’re cracking down on the Cartels. The Federales (Government police) are good as well. And while the local police can be corrupt, there’s been a big crackdown on their entire force with random weapons checks and what have you. If you don’t give yourself off as a target, no one will bother you, and if you speak the language, people will respect you. Plain and simple you must show respect and have common sense."

I'm lovin my new bike! South of the Border

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I was asked to shoot PipeMaster Champ Jamie Obrien giving surf lessons a few weeks ago, but decided to pass, as I was burnt out from having just finished the VQS Championships. The next email I got though told me the shoot would only last a couple hours, was only a couple blocks from my house and was for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation... I was in.

Jamie and his dad were flown over here specifically for the event by a pharmaceutical company. The company is trying to promote a saline based nebulizing aerosol for Cystic Fibrosis patients... and Jamie, Newport's Cordell Miller, and Brad Ettinger went beyond the call of duty to make sure everyone had a great time.

After the event I tried to get Jamie to go and shoot Lowers, but all he could talk about was the FlowRider in San Diego... and I heard he spent a lot of time down there, and was launching himself all over the place.

Also while in California, Arnette, which includes team manager Brent Bearden (Newport's "Beandip"), used the opportunity to sign Jamie to the their ever expanding team. Look for the PipeMaster to be sporting cool Arnette shades in the future.

Jamie's Shadeless Shaka... in Newport

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The Southern Hemi of the Decade & The Drama

Building Tuesday

Tuesday morning, April 10th, I flipped on my cell phone early and found it already full of messages. I ran to get my camera! West Newport was feeling the initial pulse of 2 solid opposing hemisphere swells. Troy Ekert's double barrel, Tom Rezvan's drive from behind, and Chad La Bass's deep pit, that everyone stopped filming when he pulled into, and then gasped at as he came flying out of, were some of the highlights. As for the swells, the southern hemi just kept building!

Super Wednesday

Unless you're a paddling champion, West Newport was pretty unrideable at day break. "The Point" was a giant 4 block long wall of water. And the Wedge... well when the Wedge has 20ft faces, and there's only a few in the water, you know it's heavy. It wasn't so much the size that was limiting the crowd, it was the NW swell push and morning sickness wreaking havoc on the shape. The word was that Timpton got the barrel of all barrels the evening before.
Timmy Turner was the first to show with a board that morning, he got one bomb, and left. Pat Towersey on his 4 fin, and "Barney", who broke the fin out of his board before he even caught a wave, showed up and wowed the crowd. If you wanted to surf in town on Wednesday, and didn't have Laird Hamilton skills, then 44th to the Newport Pier, or the East Harbor Jetty were your best bets.

"The wave" I can't talk about.

75 plus cars, 20 plus video and still cameras, and a pack of pros mixed in with ripping locals told you how good "the wave" was. In high school, I'd had a place in the line-up in the area, and as I looked at all the cameras lining the beach and the cliff, I knew this media circus would not sit well with the local crew. I shot for a couple hours, and headed to work. And, as I drove north I noticed a surf magazine photographer shooting line-up shots from up far atop the hill, and it became obvious that this rare fickle wave was about to be thrust into the limelight.

"The Website" and "The Wave"

After 10 hours of shooting, and 8 hours at my real job, I got to spend until early the next morning editing photos, damn I wish I was a coffee drinker! "The wave" was the biggest surf news on the entire coast, and the biggest surf news website, which I often shoot for, wanted photos of it. They expected photos of it! One way or another they were going to get photos of it, and if I wasn't going to supply them, they would easily get them from someone else. No names of "the wave" was the agreement, and photos of "the wave" were sent.

First out, First to blame...

A photo I shot of Atwater team rider Spence Pirdy standing tall and charging "the wave", was one of the first images of the swell out of the gates ... And two emails bitching about the release of it came flying at me fast and furious. Hopefully they also took the time to lash out at Surfermag.com and the Daily Pilot, who later named "the wave"!

I contacted a couple locals in the area, guys I'd surfed with years ago... If I hadn't supplied photos, some clown less responsible would have, was my response. I vowed not to release my images identifying "the wave" to any magazines... to rally for them if I ever heard of a webcam being planned there, and to help hold the ladder so it could be dismantled if a webcam ever is. Additionally, I'm planning to put together photos of the day for the local crew... if you're one of the them, you'll hear about it. Surf photography, it's too much fun...

 

Welcome to "the wave"

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$100,000 in cash prizes, skateboards, beach cruisers... plus a motorcycle, were won last weekend at the VQS Championships in Newport. There was also a ton of free goodies tossed into the crowd. Hats, sandals, clothes, hardgoods... Just about everyone left the beach with something.

And then there was the giveaway of all giveaways. 50 yards south of the contest area, as gear was being thrown into the crowd, someone just outside the surf zone started waving a brand new board! It only took a few seconds for it to register with the crowd, and the race was on! Two guys hit the water first, and swam neck to neck the entire distance to the board. Below is the photo finish.

A shark nipping at these guy's heels couldn't have gotten them to swim any faster.

Volcom board giveaway... in Newport.

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Barney jumping off the Wedge jetty was pretty interesting, it's not exactly like jumping into the surf at 28th St.. Plus those boulders are huge, and tripping into one of the deep crevasses can easily happen. As a kid, we used to go down there on the lowest tides of the year, and crawl around the boulder spaces and find tons and tons of lost swim fins. On the CDM side Woody Woodworth and his friends would lose a surf mat that they rode off the end, and the thing would bounce along the boulders, and disappear into one of the spaces... Word is Barney jammed his finger on the rocks, and dislocated it.

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A Dislocated Landing

When shooting water Newport's Josh Hoyer has a habit of trying to boost over me. It's all in good fun and in the name of getting a good photo I guess. I figure he's one of the best aerial surfers around, and knows what he's doing... so I try and hang tight, and concentrate on getting the shot as he's skimming my head. Anyone else that boosts that close though, and I'm diving for the bottom!

And so it was... As we were heading into the water to shoot, Hoyer and I were joking about how close he'd come to landing on me in the past... yea funny stuff, I guess? A short while later... Hoyer's driving down the line towards me, when I notice that familiar grin that tells me he's about to try and fly over me... Hoyer crashes through the wave's lip, his board flying high into the air with enough momentum to easily clear me... but he's suddenly hit by a gush of offshore wind that brings that momentum to a halt. As I'm diving for the bottom I'm just hoping that it won't hurt to bad when he lands on me.

A little sore but still in one piece, we surface simultaneously, nervously laughing... until we see Hoyer's finger. The finger is not cut and is still attached to his hand, which is good, but it's severely dislocated, severely! It appears he'd jammed his finger into the waterhousing when he landed on me. And now bobbing around in the shorebreak we try to no avail to force the finger back into it's joint. I gotta admit, I would have needed a bullet to bite on due to the pain, but damn, Hoyer didn't even wince! Hours at Hoag, xrays, resetting of the now chipped bone, and a splint finger... and Hoyer is nearly as good as new to boost again... next time though, let him boost over you.

Hoyer seconds before impact...

Hoyer, seconds after... in Newport

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In early 2007, a few hundred yards from shore, extending from 40th to 56th St., were large groups of seals. There were over 300 of the agile beasts by one estimate. It was a strange site, with one long time oceanfront resident saying she hadn't seen anything like it in her 45 years of living on the beach.

Theories of the seal invasion ran the gamut. They came to dine of the grunion that have been running at night. Halibut came to dine on the grunion, and the seals came to dine on the Halibut. And the more probable cause, according to the Newport Animal Control, the seals came to feed on the unusually large amount of baitfish currently off the Newport coast.

I'm just glad all 300 of them didn't know how to bodysurf.

Early Springtime crowd... off 44th

Ship-Wreaks... in Newport

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"The Recent Strong North Winds in Newport"

If you live in the 100 block, it sandblasts your house.
If you walk to the beach, you get sand in your mouth.

The sand on the beach, gets blown to the bay.
The trash cans in your alley, get blown to San Diego County.

Because of the currents you can't stay in one place.
Because of the currents the sandbars get washed away.

The water is brown, and you can't see your board when you're sitting on it.
The water is cold, and you can't feel your fingers or toes when you get out of it.

The Huntington crew shows up to surf.
The Blackies crew shake their heads and go off to work...

Brian D., throwing water... Windswell @ Blackies.

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Mark Jeremias is a life long Newport surfer and accomplished film maker. Click the poster below to get a taste of his latest and greatest surf epic. "One California Day".

Alex Knost styling on the One California Day movie poster...

Mark Jeremias, styling One California Day at Blackies

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Newport surf shop Surfside Sports has made the big move! Surfside has vacated there location near the Newport Pier, and moved to West 17th. St., next to Staples. How big is their new shop? You could fit every surfshop in Newport, and a couple Huntington shops as well into the new giant store! So when you're in need of surfwear or hardgoods, head straight to the new SurfSide Sports SuperStore.. because if they don't have it, then it probably doesn't exist.

Duke and Paul elbow to elbow in the smaller quarters of their old location...

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Newport surfers Mike Gayer and John Morris have begun the development of an internet site that will provide a unique service. The site called Hookuku, meaning "Contest or Gathering" will provide surf contest organizers a free and easy to use service for running a surf event. To find out more about this "Interactive Surf Contest Management Service", click the link below...

HooKuKu

Mike G. managing to keep all 3 fins in the water while laying it on edge...in Newport

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After weeks of dealing with a flat ocean, when surf finally did arrive late December, people up and down the coast were hungry, and a bit greedy to get a wave...

"Sharing" in Orange County

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It's been a busy past 6 months at this insignificant website. Starting with the Van's Pro last March, NewportSurfShots.com has shot the finals of nearly every major surf event on the West Coast. And I'm elated to say the last event of the summer surf contest season is over, the Newport Pro.

People say real surf photographers don't shoot surf contests, and I couldn't agree more. What they do for a wanna be photog however is allow you to network with other photogs and surfers, teach you how to shoot in the worst possible lighting conditions, challenge you to make a boring event look interesting, and force you to learn to get photos out to publications fast, really fast... like within a few hours after the event. Ya real surf photographers don't shoot surf contests, but the knowledge gained from shooting them is invaluable, and ya gotta pay your dues...

Say good-bye to the summer surf contest season of 06'

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Warren Bolster

1947 - 2006

(This was the "Hotshot" on April 4th, 2004)

I was on my way to Todos to shoot the biggest swell of the winter, when I got a call that it was blown out... I ended up instead at a San Diego reef, one of the few places on the coast that was holding the swell. As I was shooting the reef, this old looking guy with a severe limp, a cigarette hanging out of his mouth, an old shabby backpack, and a crazy look in his eye, walks up to me, and in a raspy voice, asks me who I'm shooting. He then starts babbling that he used to surf, that his eyes were bad, and that he recently took some photos in Hawaii. There's no way this guy even owns a camera I thought.

We stood there together, him talking in circles, and asking me strange questions about photography, and me hoping that he would go away. He then reaches into his backpack and pulls out a strange box with dials and and antenna on it. "What's that"? I ask. It's a remote control to an experimental camera board I designed that's out in the line-up", he answers. What the...!! He then hands me his card and asks me to shoot sequence from the beach, while he controls the camera board in the water. On the card is a photo shot from inside a crystal clear island barrel, and the name Warren Bolster. A guy who in many people's opinion is the greatest water based surf photographer of all time... I was fricken stunned!

(Click here for some of his amazing work)

Warren Bolster's camera board... in San Diego

In the ongoing quest to promote local surfers. NewportSurfShots.com has teamed up with Fuel TV and is now providing the network surfing images for wireless products, including wallpaper for phones. A few downloadable surfing images of the local crew are currently available on Fuel TV's website, and many more will be rotated onto the site in the future. Click the link below and checkout some of the local crew in action.

Fuel TV

Put one of these lovable local creatures on your phone today

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"POOCH" HERE, ALWAYS HAS A SMILE AND AN "ALOHA" FOR EVERYONE THAT SURFS THE BLACKIES AREA... AND NOW THE UNOFFICIAL CITY GREETER THROWS A DOUBLE "SHAKA" TO THE CITY OF NEWPORT BEACH AND WISHES THEM

A HAPPY 100 YEAR BIRTHDAY!

Great Food, Great Music, Great People, and fun activities for the kids....

Newport Harbor High School

This year's NHHS Junior and Senior class is special to this site. Nearly 3 years ago, when they were in their early High School years, and developing into good surfers, I began taking pictures of them surfing. Some of them knew me as one of the grumpy older surfers from the Lower Jetties area, and I'm sure rolled their eyes at my feeble photographic attempts.

Over the years they worked with me however and put up with me pointing a camera at them on the beach, in the water, and while dropping in on them. Additionally they met up with me at dusk, at dawn, at dark, and at out of town places for surf photo shoots. They also tolerated being blinded by a flash while surfing, agreed to surf bad conditions so I could experiment with photo equipment, and took time out before sprinting out to the water to let me know the surf and lighting conditions were good.

As my knowledge of photography and their surfing skills grew, our working relationship paid off. A couple of them landed photos in ads, the newspaper, on the internet, plus a magazine feature. Without a doubt, these young surfers are one of the most important reasons for the advancement of this site's photography. It's been a pleasure for me watching their surfing progress, and them mature into responsible young adults during the last few years.

Last month NHHS had their annual surf banquet. NewportSurfShots.com, as well as supportive school parent Joe R. had a slide show. Additionally Regan R. presented a NHHS surf film. Check the album section for NewportSurfShots.com's 15 minute slideshow of the local kids shot over the last few years, accompanied by tribal music from Australia's Yothu Vindi, available on Hollywood Records.

NHHS's Joey H's Smooth Slice... July 2003

NHHS's Joey H's Fin Free Slice... Feb. 2006.

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Dark Monday... The Day the Surfboard Industry stood still.

Clark Foam, the maker of 90% of surfboard blanks in the U.S., recently announced that they are immediately halting business. The company cited local Fire Authority and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) infractions, and continued litigation with these agencies related to foam blank production as the reason for their closure.

What does this mean to you, the surfer, right now? At present, there is no large volume manufacture in the United States that supplies polyurethane blanks, the ones used in most surfboard production. Inevitable blanks from foreign countries such as Australia and parts of Asia might arrive, but blank supplies in those countries are limited, and the cost of them is uncertain. Additionally the lag time for those blanks to find their way into the shaping bays of U.S. board manufactures will not happen overnight, which will surely financially impact surfboard shapers and glass shops throughout the U.S..

Large U.S. board manufactures (think Merric, Rusty & Lost) are one step ahead of the masses, and have set up shop overseas, and are ready for surfboard production. They, as well as "pop out" Tuflite surfboards, will undoubted attempt to fill the surfboard void in the U.S. market, but at what increased cost to the consumer, is uncertain.

Alternatives to polyurethane Clark blanks for surfboard construction do exist, and the current issue of Surfing Magazine discusses some of them. But at present, most shapers and glassers in the U.S. are not up to speed on working with these EPS/Epoxy alternatives.

For now, keep that board of yours safe, and away from the rocks! Because it's not going to be easy, or cheap to replace any time soon. If NewportSurfShots.com can make any announcements for any of those in the local surfboard shaping or glassing community, please let me know... Best wishes to everyone who has been impacted by this untoward event.

"Mowing Polyurethane"

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A few weeks ago NewportSurfShots.com held it's first ever slide show. 711 slides over 42 minutes. The goal was to try and represent every surf spot in Newport, and include as many different people in it as possible. In late August, when I was offered the opportunity to do the show, I thought it was to late to get record company's permission to use the songs that I wanted in the show. So we came up with the idea of using a live DJ. I think the DJ did a pretty good job that night.

Next year I hope to have the opportunity to showcase everyone's surfing again, and to put together a sound track to go along with it. If any surf companies or clubs would like to use this year's slide show at one of their events, let me know. Thanks to those that were able to attend, I hope you enjoyed it.

A Newport local... enjoying the slide show.

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Hawaiian female power surfer Kealea Kennelly had never surfed Newport before. But a couple weeks ago, after losing in the quarter finals of the Malibu WCT event, a heat she said she lost due to poor wave selection... she ended up in Newport at a friend's house. And the next morning she paddled out and tapped into the power of 54th St... well ok so maybe it wasn't that powerful, but it was playful.

Her impression of Newport's famous sandbar... "it was ok". Hopefully one day she'll return, and catch"The Point" when there's double overhead bombs or "The Wedge" when there's dredging death pits... there's plenty of power in those waves.

Kealea Kennelly... playing in Newport

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Da Water Update

During this summer my boards often sat in my garage growing cobwebs, while I instead spent a lot of my surf time figuring out how to shoot from the water. You don't know how many times I envisioned tossing my camera, wrestling someone's board away from them, and using it to grab a few waves of my own. My efforts however are starting to pay off, as I'm now spending less time swimming in circles, and more time lining up ok shots. When I told a professional surf photographer last spring that I was going to add water photography to my mix, he just laughed, "you poor guy, you have no idea what you're in for"! As I've found out, shooting water takes a lot of preparation, is a hell of a lot of work, and 2 hours of floating around with a box strapped to your arm, taking waves on the head, and dodging people, often results in only a hand full of good photos. Yea I've got a ton of photos of people going straight down the line and and what have you, but that's not what I'm looking to get. Because the number of good photos from each water shoot is minimal, I'll be putting water shots in albums only when I get a decent amount of good ones.

Eric, toying with the tube... @ 54

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Three years ago this week, long time Newport surfer Steve Webster was killed in a terrorist bombing on the small Indonesian island of Bali. If you look on the 52nd St. jetty you'll see a plaque embedded into the rocks in his honor. Recenlty 3 additional bombs exploded on the small island, killing 25 and wounding 100, numbers that are sure to rise. My wife and I have kept in touch with a local guy that was our driver when we visited the island years ago. This father of 3 reported that over the last year the tourist dollars that the locals depend on were beginning to return to the island. Saturday's bombings is sure to be a blow to their businesses and Bali's economy. For info. on Bali's surf, and news from the Bali surf community, click the link below. Crazy fricken world we live in.

The Wedge

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In the 70's there was a free skate park in Irvine that we used to skate, but after a similar city's skate park was sued by a skater that hurt himself, they shut it down, fearful of a lawsuit. This drove us to be creative and look for other places to skate. The Orange Coast College pool when empty was one of them, as was a reservoir near the top of Margaret in Corona del Mar...

Recently a skate park opened to the public in Costa Mesa, and NewportSurfShots.com's Kiefer is in tune on what's happening up there. Look for him to post some skate albums in the future.

Volcom team rider "Maddog" busting concrete air... in Costa

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NewportSurfShots.com's 15 minutes of fame came and went... Thanks to Laylan Connelly at the Orange County Register for all her hard work in putting the article together.

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The Quiet is Shattered

An incident occurred nearly 30 years ago in front of the small Balboa Bay beach in which I grew up that I will always remember. A couple of vans pulled up one weekend next to our house, and a group of kids and their chaperones piled out for a day of fun in the bay's calm waters. The bay was clean back then, and to us kids in the neighborhood, the channel in front of the house was our big swimming pool. We knew every nook and cranny of every seawall, dock, boat and bridge in the area.

In the early afternoon we heard sirens screaming down the street, stopping at the foot of the beach. Apparently one of the teenage boys had been swimming in the bay, when he suddenly gasped for air and went under. The guard that manned the beach tower was alerted to the incident, and was in the water frantically looking for him. He was soon joined by other guards. Unfortunately they did not find him, and the objective turned to retrieving the body. The lifeguard deptartment asked all the locals watching the ordeal to get their mask and fins and assist in the search. No way your saying to yourself, they would never ask that! Well this was 30 years ago, when rules, regulations, policies and procedures were a lot different.

The age cut off to participate was in the mid teens and those, including myself, that were to young ran to Bay Island to watch the search. All of the "divers" lined up across the length of the channel, 2 blocks north, under Bay Island bridge. On command from a lifeguard everyone dove to the bottom of the shallow channel, scoured it for a body and resurfaced. The line of divers then moved up a few feet, and repeated the maneuver. The group did this for the length of the channel and found nothing. I remember some of the guys being pretty freaked out by the experience when talking to them afterward.

The city then brought in the O.C. Sheriff's scuba divers, and they soon found the young man under a Bay Island dock, in eel grass. Our house was the command post during the ordeal, and sanctuary for the victim's friends. We learned from them that the teenager had a history of Epileptic Seizures. So it became evident that a seizure most likely occurred, which resulted in him engulfing water, and drowning. The chaperones of the outing were in total shock, absolutely devastated by the mishap, and my parents did what they could for them.

A couple weeks ago sirens sounded throughout the lower jetties area, and the rescue vehicles turned up 27th St.. If sirens turn up a 100 block, it usually means something is occurring on the beach. When I arrived the paramedics were securing an IV, airway and performing CPR . The 48 year old male had been pulled from the water and was reportedly a suicide attempt. The telling photos shot I don't think should be posted. Suffice to say the police, fire dept., and lifeguards where on the scene immediately, instituted heroic measures, and the victim was immediately transferred to Hoag with vital signs, but later died. Ironically at approximately the same time, a woman leap from one of Newport's bay bridges in an unrelated suicide attempt. NewportSurfShots.com will not make a habit of reporting similar events.

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Wheels 2 Water

Laylan Connelly has always been extremely close to her older brother. Tragically a few years ago her brother was shot while on a motorcycle at a stop light. The shooting was without motive, no one was ever apprehended, and it resulted in her brother being paralyzed.

Laylan is a reporter for the Orange County Register newspaper, and has the monumental job of covering any and everything that occurs in the Newport area. If something is happening in our town, you can be sure she is digging up the facts on it for the paper.

Last Fall Laylan became aware of the Wheels 2 Water event held at Blackies. She subsequently contacted myself, and the founder of the organization Travis Tremble. Which then lead her to write a compelling, in-depth article on the newly formed organization. It is an article she was very compassionate about writing, given her brothers paralysis. Read the story online by clicking here

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The Eland is not ONland anymore.

 

The dredge support ship, the Eland, was being passed a line from shore Sunday morning near Orange St., when the vessel nudged the sandbar. Those that live in the Shores said the captain gunned the engine so hard attempting to prevent the ship from running aground, that there were huge clouds of black smoke in the air, and they thought there was a fire. One of the lifeguards who watched it happen, said 'that when the ship began to become stuck, it swung around perpendicular to the beach, and waves started hitting the side of it". This pushed the vessel further towards shore, and up onto the sandbar. The tide dropped throughout the day, and there was little chance of freeing it up and getting it back out to sea.

On Monday the crew of the Eland choose to try and free the ship without the expensive assistance of a tug boat. The 158ft. ship with 20,000 gallons of fuel rocked a bit, but remained embedded in the sand. Mid morning when the skipper of the vessel looked out from his perch and saw the Fire Dept., Police, Lifeguards, a City Councilman, the Contractor, and the Dept. of Fish & Game gathered in a circle along the side his vessel, he must of known his company's checkbook was coming out immediately.

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Growing up on the Balboa Peninsula, our crew used to surf the dumping shore pound around 7th St during windswells. The wave was garbage, but it was cool for us to say we surfed in front of our houses. At the age of 13, I was surfing the thumping walls, and was hit by my board so hard that it broke my front tooth off, and imbedded it into the fiberglass of my board.

Kip A. was out surfing Blackies recently when his board hit him in the mouth and chipped not one, but both of his front teeth. It was pretty surprising how cool he was about it, considering he was looking at spending some quality time in the dental chair. How he avoided a split lip during the accident is still a mystery. Word is his smile has already been repaired...

It's always better to smash the lip, than be smashed by the lip.

Will A. smashing through the lip... @ 54th St.

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NewportSurfShots.com's archive section has only been around about 6 months. Prior to the archive a "Hotshot" of someone would be up one day, and down the next. Often the person in the photo never found out about it until days later, and missed out on seeing it. It is for this reason that once a week NewportSurfShots.com will present a "Hotshot" feature from long ago. It might be the first time you've seen it, it might be one you don't remember, or it might be a photo and feature of you that you never knew existed.

 

The big storm during Jan. woke up another one of Newport's secret surf spots. Mike L. surfed fun ankle high lefts at 39th and Balboa Blvd. yesterday, with the occasional waist high set coming through when a bus drove by. I also heard there was a top to bottom right off of a raised curb at 48th and River. If the high tide along with rain persisted, look for both of those new surf spots to be extremely crowded. As of now Newport lifeguards have no plans to blackball either place during rush hour traffic. Mike L. signaling a left lane change @ 39th......... and Balboa Blvd.

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The Clean up

The City of Newport Beach can be a difficult place to reside in. The parking regulators at times seem to institute covert tactics in order to nail a ticket to your windshield. The growth a few of the City Council Members try to institute, often seems absurd. And then there's the building dept. Try getting their stamp of approval on anything the first time you present it, it's just not going to happen.

But there is one dept of the city that deserves kudos, especially lately. The beach maintenance department. When the large chunks of lifeguard ramp broke off from the Newport Pier last month and ended up on the beach, they removed it the next day. When the recent storm washed tons of debris onto the beach, they were out the moment the weather cleared to start the long process of cleaning up. And when 500 large squid washed up onto our sands last week, even though all the squid somehow mysteriously vanished by the next day, the maintain crews had prepared to rid the beach of the creatures the following morning.

The end of January a few of us were walking the beach and commented on how fast it was starting to look like it's old self. We noted however that the large amount of kelp and debris that had filled in and blanketed the rocks of each jetty, would have to wait and be washed off by the next large swell and high tide combo. But sure enough, the next day the maintenance crews were out in full force digging, scooping out, and shoveling the debris and kelp from the crevices of each jetty.

Those guys are awesome!

Sean M., solid hit in front of what is now a clean 28th st. jetty.

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Blah, blah, blah, the River is still flowing. Blah, blah, blah the water is still brown and Upper West Newport beaches are still closed. Blah, blah, blah the beaches and jetties are still littered with debris. Blah, blah, blah there are hundreds of large squid scattered on the beach... Large Squid?

Jan 19th the beaches of Newport were littered with squid up to 6ft. in length. Strewn on the beach in front of the small walled surf in the lower jetties on Wed. alone, there were nearly a hundred of the ocean creatures. The Register Newspaper is reporting that they may have been chasing bait fish and got washed up onto the beach.

On another note, a crew of surfers racing off of Newport in an Aluminum boat hit the 32nd st. jetty a little after dark on Jan 19th. Word is no one was seriously hurt, except for the boat, a few surfboards, and the boat driver's ego.

Contaminated Water, Giant Squid, A Ship Wreck...

Remember when the only exciting thing that ever happened along the coast of Newport was a big air.

Big Air @ "The Point

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I hate to say it, but if you have been surfing only Newport the 3rd week of Jan, you missed out. Sure you got that one barely head high wave, after waiting 20 minutes, that raced down the beach. But the word is everywhere else on the coast was overhead and perfect. I too am guilty of staying put, and have had to endure reading emails, and listening to people tell me how good Rincon, Trestles, Swami's, Sunset Cliffs... and every river mouth up and down the coast was.

To much West, to long interval, not enough sand, to much sand... whatever, Newport missed out on the meat of the swell. But then again, when Newport's beloved " Point" was double overhead last summer, how good do you think Swami's or Rincon was?

Oneill team rider Nick J., taking off ... @ 28th

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The Billabong Clipper

The 61ft. Billabong Clipper, a WWII era USAF Gruman Albatross seaplane, has been refitted as the ultimate surfing exploration craft, and in doing so ups the ante of surf exploration. Monday, under a cloud of secrecy, the Clipper made a perfect water landing, was towed into the harbor, and was moored at China Cove. Media visitations and christening occurred Tues. This was a temporary visit of the seaplane to Newport, and as quickly and quietly as she came, she was gone.

Room for 11, has latest in forecasting technology, travels over 3,300 miles without re-fueling, is outfitted with surfboard racks, and carries 2 waverunners.

The Billabong Clipper has left the harbor...

 

 

 

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