Saturday, December 25, 2010

Another book on waves

I have linked my review of Susan Casey's book, "The Wave." The review in the San Jose Mercury News brought a response from Bruce Parker, formerly chief scientist of the National Ocean Service, NOAA, and currently a visiting professor at the Center for Maritime Systems, Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, N.J.

Here is part of what he wrote:

Having read your review of Susan Casey's book in The Mercury News, I thought you might be interested in another dramatic just-published book on waves. But this book is very different than Casey's, in spite of the very similar covers. There is no surfing (except when Captain Cook
first saw Tahitians enjoying that sport in 1777), but the dangers are far greater -- and literally millions die. This book from Palgrave Macmillan is called:

"The Power of the Sea: Tsunamis, Storm Surges, Rogue Waves, and Our Quest to Predict Disasters."

It tells the story of our long struggle to understand the physics of the sea so we can use that knowledge to predict when the sea will unleash its power against us (so we can get out of its way and survive). It is a 'popular' book that interweaves compelling stories of unpredicted natural disasters with fascinating stories of scientific discoveries, beginning with ancient mankind's strange ideas about the sea and working up to our latest advances in predicting the sea's moments of destruction.

More info can be found at his website:

Friday, November 5, 2010

Winter Swell 2010

I caught the first good winter swell of the season Thursday Nov. 4. It was fading badly by the time I got there but surfers still enjoyed low tide, glassy conditions with 4-6 foot surf. I should have gone Wednesday. What's that bumper sticker say?: Work is for people who don't surf.
Photos by Elliott Almond

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Surfing rules

Always remember the golden rule: surfing is supposed to be fun. Share the waves.

Surfing Book for Beginners

Surfing magazine has called, "Surfing Mastering Waves from Basic to Intermediate," the WebMD of instructional texts. It covers all the basics and much more, including interviews with about 60 experts. I offer personal vignettes, stories of shark attacks, surf rescues and the rich history that makes surfing an engaging outdoor activity. The book also is fully illustrated with my surfing photos as well as a color insert of Mavericks going off.

Below are photos from a past winter swell at Steamer Lane in Santa Cruz, Calif.

Find the book at Mountaineers Books has it too.