Oregon Surfing

Walking down this path I notice two things. Green and brown. The path brown and a little pebbley, orange hues just touch the surface. Green comes into the picture, as large forest tree’s absorb my surroundings. I walk and no one is there. I hear the sweet toned light pitched chirps from birds as they talk amongst their neighbours. It only takes ten minutes to realise I am immersed in nature. I feel like I am a product of the city coming to connect with his roots. The path continues as I walk lonely looking up at the trees and noticing the suns rays touch the trees ever so delicately like they are communicating. Finally I reach the coast and green and brown disappears as I walk into what feels like foreign land. Off-white and blue take charge here. Sand that stretches long until hitting pebbles. The green and brown cant stay here. I see the cliff with trees among it finding their way close to this beach but stopping at the expansive control of off white and blue. I take my shoes off as I step onto the sand. It is powdery and cold. I like the cold feeling of the powder seeping between my toes. This feeling of being immersed in nature and feeling like man-made creation was never created, doesn’t last.

I notice a couple of surfers sitting by a rock watching the waves. I look out at the water. I notice black spots in the distance sitting there like they walk on water. The waves have left and right hand faces with their white crumbling hair getting in the way in the middle. The waves aren’t big, but they’re certainly not small. The sets are head high on a 6ft guy. Behind me is two girls, a mother and her daughter walking out to the ocean. With a long board ‘foamy’ beginner board. I assume her mum is going to teach her the ways of surfing. I sit on the beach my butt stuck in the sand and light wind brush against my face and mess my hair up. As I push it back to its original position I look out at the expansive ocean. A certain calmness comes across me and I wonder whether this is why people surf here.

Being from Australia, these cold climates are unknown to me and I wonder if this is the reason for surfers putting up with water that is so cold you come out a different colour from when you first walked in. I walk over to two surfers sitting on a big log. They are looking out at the surf, talking to each other but not looking at the other one. Their focus is on the ocean as they assess the waves before eventually paddling out. One surfer has long wavy brown hair, and a beard. His brown eyes are piercing but with a kind of relaxed nature to the them. His beard medium but not maintained in the slightest. His wetsuit is pulled down to his waist. He has a slim build with just enough muscle to think ok this guy would be attractive to women. He has a tattoo on his left shoulder and one on his wrist. I can’t quite work out what they are, I don’t want to stare either. The other surfer has short red hair, pale white skin, blue eyes. He looks like he could be an accountant but with a moustache, so he still looks a little surfer without having long hair. As I get a little closer they notice me and look over.


“hey how’s the waves today?” I ask

The long haired dude replies: “yeah not bad, there’s a southerly wind coming in which works the left handers nicely, I looked at Magic Seaweed and they were hinting at 4 to 5 feet. Only the sets really look like that though. A little choppy and little windier than I thought but it seems pretty good.”

I was expecting something more dude-ish. This guy was like a freaking meteorologist”.

They seemed nice, but not nice enough that they would want me to stick around for too long so I asked what I was dying to know:

“why do you guys surf when it’s so damn cold here?”

They laughed.

“I’ve been surfing here for five years man, before that I was in California, so I had to adjust, but at the end of the day you get to surf and its just that feeling of being out in the ocean catching a ride that you can’t beat, so I guess in the end a little cold is worth it dude. Just put on a full wettie with a hood and some booties and you’ll be good”

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