Tuesday, February 13

Night Surfing

The forces were aligned. Full moon, incoming tide and solid swell. And not a breath of wind. Jay, Julien and I got into our wetsuits, hoods, boots, gloves and tied on glowsticks for the perfect night surfing conditions.

At 9pm, we paddled out at Pleasure Point. The water was like black vinyl with rolling 5 and 6 foot swells sweeping along the point offering 200 meter rides. No one else was out. Jay paddled ahead on the 'Cobra' (his ancient 9' long board) and I followed the tiny green glow on his back ("Found them in the fishing section," he told me, "hope they don't attract sharks"). We sat well out the back, with the rocks of the point far behind us and picked off set wave after set wave. The rides were so long that, by the end of a wave, Jay and Julien's glow sticks were tiny dots in the distance. I'd use them to guide me as I began the long paddle back to the take off zone.

I've been night surfing before but never in such perfect conditions. There was just enough light to time the take off and make the drop in the dark before shooting out onto the face of the wave - multicoloured with the reflected lights from shore - for a ride almost back to the 36th Avenue steps.

After Jay and Julien went in, I stayed out for another half hour. Night surfing alone (except for the occasional seal or sea otter swinging by to check you out) is far spookier. I was rewarded with an epic final wave, a head high and fast ride all the way back to the stairs.

Pleasure Point and the 36th Ave steps by day


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