Ready to surf now:
NOAA and CDIP maintain buoy data for the California Coast. There's gobs of gory detail for all the west coast Buoys. The 46042 buoy (just outside the Monterey Bay) shows current Santa Cruz swell data and forecast swell in the Monterey Bay. The tide tables show the tides for Santa Cruz, low tide is usually best at Cowell. Here's the Coastal Marine weather forecast. The West Coast Santa Cruz Hotel (formerly the Dream Inn) provides a current picture (sorry camera still down) of Cowells Beach. Surfline has on-line surf reports provided by fellow surfers, and a SurfCam of Steamer Lane a more advanced surfing area near Cowells Beach at the Lighthouse. Check out the pictures from Mavericks, the monster wave area, where surfing is a spectator sport. Is the water clean? Check with the Santa Cruz Surfridersquality reports and the County Government quality reports. The GOES-10 weather satellite provides a color enhanced IR. image of the west coast. There's also a local radar map to show current rain conditions. Hardbody has info and surfcams including Cowells Beach. O'Neill has a Surf Phone that's updated daily. You can call them at (831) 475-BARL (or (831)475-2275)
Planning to Surf in a few days:
Fleet Numerical Meteorology and Oceanography Center (FNOC) provides Pacific Ocean wave height models that predict today's conditions, plus 24, 48 and 72 hour predictions. These charts predict upcoming West Coast surfing conditions. Reality has the Surf Forecast for Santa Cruz. Santa Cruz's summer doldrums come to an end as South Pacific swell moves north. Wait about two days after Oahu's south beaches (Diamond Head, Ala Moana, and Makaha) go off. Here's the South Pacific 51028 buoy. To help you plan a Surfn' Safari, here's a short list of some of the lodging that's very close to surfing spots.
Learn to Surf:
Here's an interesting on-line surfing book, the Learning to Surf chapter has a good write-up for beginners. However, it moves very quickly [read too quickly] from learning to catch a wave into competition moves, but it does have some good and interesting information. A good way to learn anything is to take a lesson. There are several instructors in the Santa Cruz area. Two well known teachers are Richard Schmidt's School of Surfing and Ed's Club Ed. The Santa Cruz Surf School specializes in lessons with a high teacher student ratio. Check out the on-line version of Juice, Northern California's Surf magazine. Local surf news, stories and Great action photographs. Confused about the so called "surf speak"? Check out the lingo link on the net body boarding site.
Other Things to Do:
You can only surf for so long, then you'll be interested in doing other things around Santa Cruz. The Shakespeare Santa Cruz is a world famous. There's lots of local events coming up this year. Cruzio maintains a comprehensive on-line directory for Santa Cruz. One of my favorite clubs, is the Kuumbwa Jazz Center, especially the Monday night jazz shows. After surfing, you might enjoy visiting the beach boardwalk or the Santa Cruz Wharf, both located next to Cowells Beach. Creation Captured has some Woody Woodworth photographs and movies that are fun to watch, and are available to purchase for commercial use. The Santa Cruz County Visitors Council (SCCVC) has lots of information about Santa Cruz. Their info includes maps, things to do, lodging, etc.
Send questions and comments to Bob,
the Surfn' Santa Cruz Kahauna.
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