For the past week or so I’ve been traveling around Southern California getting some surf in and catching up with some friends and family. Once the ski season is over hanging out in wet, cold VT is fun for a while but every year I get the itch for palm trees, warm weather, and good waves and I’ll pretty much do anything for decent surf. This year my cousin was getting married out in the desert near Palm Springs so flying out to hit up some legendary SoCal surf spots just made a lot of sense.
For the first 4 days we stayed in San Clemente and surfed in the area and around the Trestles breaks and got in some pretty decent surf. Anytime you just pick random days for a surf trip you can definitely get screwed and there could be no waves… but we lucked out with a S SW swell which is the best for that area and managed to score anything from waist to head high waves every day. I was really surprised at how glassy the water stayed most days too. Even in the mid afternoon we headed out to lower Trestles one day and it was sunny, pure glass, and head high sets with maybe 25-30 people in the water. which for that area is basically empty. But with such few people and the waves as good as they were we just cycled through the line up and everyone out there was having a hell of a time.
Tom Wisdom, one of our Stratton buddies, lives in the are and is based out of Camp Pendleton so we were able to hang out with him which was awesome and even take a trip onto the base and check things out. Tom was an xc skier for SMS and Middlebury college and is now a captain in the Marines and helicopter pilot. Tommy also recently returned from a tour in Afghanistan and he was able to show us around the airfield a little bit and even take us into one of the heli simulators. Seeing stuff like that close up is pretty amazing and to realize how complicated some of the aircrafts are. both Gus and I got pretty motion sick in the simulators but it was cool to try taking off, flying around, and shooting a few missiles.
One of the big reasons for the trip was that my older cousin Ryan was getting married so Gus and I drove the 2 hours from the coast into the desert for two nights of hanging and partying with the Kelly family (my moms side of the family). I don’t get to see my cousins and aunts and uncles very often so that was really cool. Neither Gus or I had ever been to that part of California either so it was a new experience to check out the desert. Damn hot thats for sure. just in a matter of 2 hours of driving we went from 75 degree San Clemente to 102 degree Palm Desert. it felt like a non stop sauna. On the day of the wedding I wanted to go out for a run and managed to not get out the door until 11. bad idea, it was rugged. I had to take turns wearing my white training shirt on my back in order to save my skin.. and wrapping it around my head to lower my body temp. I ran on some sweet trails for about an 1:20, ran out of water, and literally don’t think I could have made it 2 hours without passing out. finishing the run at about 12:30 in 104 deg. I thought it was a good way to start a day of partying. But my cuz’s wedding was insane.. top notch fancy with cocktail parties in gated communities. the wedding took place at a private country club and we got a laugh out of how the gate guards would look at us every time we drove it. Maybe they knew Gus was crashing the wedding. But both families were awesome to hang out with and we met a lot of cool people.
After driving back to SoCal, which took a long ass time by the way because Coachella was going on just down the road, we were bale to get one more full day of beach time in before I flew back to VT last night. After everything that has gone down in the past 2 weeks I’m pretty worn out but also looking forward to getting back into training and feeling good. This coming monday is the official start to the training year so get ready for that! of course none of us brought a camera on our trip to the coast but here are a few pics we managed to snap from our phones.
california sunshine is not a bad way to start the spring
coach gus doing some work from the beach
felt a little odd sitting in a machine like this wearing jeans and sandals
SMS and Middlebury xc skier Tom Wisdom… now a Captain in the Marines
Gus pretending to shoot things
Living the high life in Palm Desert … the Vintage club
some of the family (bride and groom in the background) hanging out for pictures and enjoying the desert weather