Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Australian Taj Burrow wins Santa Cruz surfing contest

Taj Burrow of Yallingup, Western Australia, won the 2012 O'Neill Coldwater Classic in November defeating countryman Matt Wilkinson in the final 13.10 to 12.70 (both out of 20.00). Burrow moved to No. 6 on the ASP world rankings.

The Association of Surfing Professionals event was held at Steamer Lane in Santa Cruz. The ASP brought a World Tour event to Ocean Beach in San Francisco last year giving the Bay Area a taste of top surfing two years running.

© ASP/ Kirstin
                          Burrow (above) showed command on some fun waves at the Lane this week.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Surfing Jaws on Maui, Hawaii

A big autumn swell arrived on Maui. Winter waves not far behind for the West Coast.
Check out this video on Jaws here.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Shark Attack in Santa Cruz

A curious white shark doesn't seem to like a kayaker fishing in his back yard at Pleasure Point on the Eastside of Santa Cruz. Read the story here.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Kelly Slater Starts ASP Season Fast

ASP champion Kelly Slater finished second at the Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach, clinching the ASP World No. 1 position after just two events on the 2012 ASP World Championship Tour.

© ASP/ Kirstin
Photographer: Kirstin Scholtz

Surfer Punches Shark And Survives

By Catharine Paddock PhD
Medical News Today
07 Apr 2012

It is not often we hear of an encounter with a shark where the shark slinks away and the human survives relatively unscathed. But this week, we have news of how 28-year-old Joshua Holley from Hawaii, fended off a shark that attacked him - while he was surfing off the coast of Oahu where he lives - by punching it in the face.

Holley told ABC News he first felt a push on his body, and when he looked to his left he saw a large dorsal fin and then felt a "popping" sensation in his foot. Later in hospital, he discovered the shark bite had severed two tendons and made a wound requiring 42 stitches, but luckily had punctured no major arteries.

The shark then went under the water and came up on the other side. Holley did some quick thinking, remembered the most sensitive part of a shark was the snout, and then:

"I'm kind of holding it and it's coming out on the right side, I punched him once and twice with my right hand, it submerged and swam off," said Holley.

Other surfers came to the rescue and helped Holley make his way back to the beach.

He said he was terrified at the time, but felt an instinct kick in that made him say to the shark, "I'm not gonna die today".

Despite his terrifying encounter, Holley bears no resentment toward the shark, which he describes as about 10 feet long and likely a tiger shark. He said he is not angry with the shark, it's just doing what comes naturally.

"You have to remember when you're in the ocean you have to respect the ocean, that's where they eat, live, breed - we're just visitors in their home," he told ABC News.

Holley says he fully intends to be back in the water, as soon as the doctors say he can. But first he must wait for his injuries to heal: he is going to need orthopedic surgery and treatment on his foot.

Tiger sharks are large, blunt-bosed predators named for the dark, vertical stripes found mainly on juveniles: the lines start to fade and almost disappear as they grow into adults.

According to National Geographic, tiger sharks have a "duly earned reputation as man-eaters", second only to great white sharks in attacking people.

But whereas a white shark may well swim away after biting a human, a tiger shark is more likely to stay and finish the job, because of a "near completely undiscerning palate".

As well as humans, they eat nearly everything: they have sharp, highly serrated teeth and powerful jaws. They can crack open the shells of sea turtles and clams.

Stomach contents of captured tiger sharks have revealed a nearly limitless menu of diet items, including seals, birds, squids, stingrays, sea snakes, and even license plates and old tires.

It would seem that thanks to some quick thinking, and the fact the shark chose to bite his foot first, Holley had a very lucky escape.

Thursday, March 15, 2012


The American Pro Surfing Series announced Thursday the debut of a three-event series for Huntington Beach, Calif.

The first event is scheduled for late April on the south side of the Huntington Beach Pier. The others competitions, also scheduled for HP Pier, will be held in late September and early November.

The series is an opportunity for domestic surfers to hone their skills without leaving the country, event organizers said in a news release. All surfers are eligible except the ASP's top 34 title competitors.

Here is a prepared statement from APSS spokesman Scott Waring:

"Through more than 25 years of organized surfing experience, I've had the opportunity to watch many of today's premier young athletes grow into some
of the most talented and inspiring young men and women in the surfing
community. It was with this in mind the idea of producing a homegrown platform to support American surfers that the APSS was born."

A prize purse of $10,000 is being offered for the men, $2,000 for women.
The contest will include four-man heats with 50 per cent elimination,
starting with 64 men and 16 women.

Some of the big names expected to compete include former world champion Sunny
Garcia and Mason Ho of Hawaii, Timmy Curran of Ventura, Chris Waring of Seal Beach, Killian Garland of Santa Barbara, Chris Ward of San Clemente and Colin Moran of Costa Mesa. In the women's division, Sarah Taylor and Jenna Balester of Huntington Beach and Demi Boelsterli of Santa Barbara are registered.

For information check here

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Friday, March 2, 2012

Swedish Magazine Gives Surfing Book Props

Active Escape 360 did a spread on surfing and showcased Mastering Waves From Basic to Intermediate. Hope all the newbie Swedish surfers go out and buy a copy now.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Kelly Slater brings some warmth to winter

For anyone shivering out there here is an image of sunshine and surf thanks to the master Kelly Slater at the Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast being held at the famed Snapper Rocks Down Under.
© ASP/ Kirstin
Photographer: Kirstin Scholtz

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Dangers of surf travel

It used to be so fun to pop down to Baja for tasty waves. Then the kidnappings began.

Now surf journalist Michael Scott Moore is being held by Somali pirates.

Read the story here.

We're hoping for his safe return as well as the others being held.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Working Hard at Mavericks

Berkeley sports photographer Kelley L. Cox captured me in mid interview with Mavericks reigning champion Chris Bertish of South Africa and Brazilian Alex Martins.
They're both great and as Chris likes to say, he's just a normal guy. He's humbled by winning Mavericks in 2010 and says, "There's at least 10 guys back in South Africa who surf big waves way better than me. It's all about getting an opportunity to come to these contests." Cristo, as he is called, had

nothing but compliments for Alex, calling him the man to beat for 2012 -- if this La Nina gives it up this season. Odds aren't good. Heck, I just returned from a hike in the redwoods of the Santa Cruz Mountains wearing shorts and a T-shirt. If I didn't mess up the calendar says it's Jan. 8.

Word on the photographer. Kelley is a UC Berkeley grad who picked up sports photography on her own. She has been producing wonderful images of local professional soccer and Stanford athletics for the past couple of years. An outdoor enthusiast she lately has been spotted getting her feet wet -- literally -- at the beach while pointing her lenses at some of the world's best surfers. Check out her website here.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Opening Ceremony at Mavericks

Spent the afternoon at Pilar Point where the heavies gathered for the opening ceremony of the Mavericks big wave contest. The waves were huge Friday but westerly winds made for bumpy rides and less-than-ideal conditions. The surfers, though, were stoked to have a big swell. They are worried another season will pass without much heat.

Here are some photos from the afternoon:

Photos by Elliott Almond