Mavericks dawn patrol surfing opening day september 2011

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Since my last session at Maverick’s, two guys have drowned, Orange County’s Jacob Trette and Hawaiian underground charger, Sion Milosky.  I am scared to death of that wave…I keep asking myself why I put myself through this insanity.
I had been tracking a swell from the Aleutian Islands all week…and was getting mixed buoy readings.  The West Papa buoy was showing 17 feet and the Oregon buoy was flat.  I went up anyway.
Paddling out, I wasn’t feeling very confident.  It’s always that way for me on the first day back in big conditions, as Southern California surf is where I do most of my training.  How is one supposed to charge when all there is…is waist high shore break?

Anyway, there were two guys sitting at the main bowl.  I paddled around a bit…trying to find my spot.  It wasn’t long until there were twenty guys in the line up.  This just adds to the difficulty and frustration of getting a good wave, because everyone goes at once.  The last thing I want to do is to get tangled up with a bunch of prone guys in 20ft. surf.

I sat to the north of the main bowl and was a little gun shy from my last session, where I took off at the peak for a photo op.  I pulled into a wave, it went top to bottom in a half a second.  I had nowhere to go and the thing just unloaded on my head.  The wave broke my board, paddle and put my front bottom teeth through my lip.

There were three more behind that one, which sent me through the rocks.  The worst part is that I could see Evan Lloyd on the ski.  I waved at him to come and save me, but there was nothing he could do.  He just threw his hands in the air.  I don’t want to go through that experience again.  It’s inevitable, though.