All of us living in the US have felt a crunch on our finances due to the country’s overall economy. Living on Florida’s Gulf Coast our swell potential is few and far between. The usual cure was to do the two to three hour drive to our Atlantic side for some watery bliss. So now more than ever staying close to home and using local knowledge plays a integral part of who we are as surfers always making the best of what’s given even if it’s delivered in small glassy knee high waves. And best of all the more environmental knowledge you have the better of a chance you have of scoring empty waves when those who don’t know don’t go.
During past summers driving over to our Atlantic side to score ridable waves during the summer flat spells was the best solution leaving the local breaks unchecked until the better and more consistent winter months. With a tight budget and a will to surf we survive. And I don’t know if it’s been a summer with better surf here back home or simply the local spots haven’t been checked but I’ve been able to surf almost every week since I made the choice to keep it close to home. The fix isn’t like that of riding something with a bit more power but a fix it is and when there’s several days of it in a row, who can complain?
Just recently we had several days of fun surf from either a westerly wind which persisted for two weeks eventually producing perfect glassy knee to waist high waves or Tropical Storm then Hurricane Dolly serving up more of the same. The local spot which produces mediocre surf at best has been doing a bit better. The local sandbars now seem to line up the waves more consistently than past years possibly due to the multi-million dollar beach re-nourishment which washed away and filled in the bars or maybe the man upstairs seeing our crisis and providing respite from all things man created and tearing it down for us to keep sanity or lack there of in check. What ever is happening I couldn’t help but fall back in love with the local breaks even it they aren’t more than weak dribble when they’re on.
Sure you may live at or close to a great spot but even then the hunt and desire for bigger, better and longer persists no matter who you are.
Save your money, maybe get a new board, take your kids shopping for some news clothes, take the wife or girlfriend out to eat and take a look at your local break again. Even if you’ve got a better local spot than others, think of us who surf the small stuff and get stoked for what you have and pray we get something better than flat. Fall in or back in love with your local break as it will make your daily routine so much better.