Surfing at Crescent Beach

Two surfers braving the waves on a January day in northern California
Catching the Waves

A Bit of Personal History

I’ve had a camera in my hands most of my life. In 2006, I went to California to take care of my mother during the last year of her life. I have to admit that I’ve never tried surfing.  While staying on the North Coast, I started hiking the coastal trails, and bought a GPS unit to keep track of my miles. What I hadn’t counted on was the dense canopy that kept my GPS from functioning.  

I also decided to experiment with digital photography. Back in 2000, I had bought a Panasonic digital camera, but it was limited to less than 2 megapixels in resolution. For my 2006 birthday, I bought myself a Nikon Coolpix L3. My birthday is in October. By early December, digital photography had me hooked. For Christmas 2006, I bought my first Pro-sumer grade camera, a Nikon D80. The rest is history. I’ve never looked back.

A Bit About Crescent City

Crescent City is the county seat of Del Norte County, the northwestern corner of California. The city is noted for having been destroyed by the tsunami that followed the Alaska earthquake of 1964. Driftwood logs cover Crescent City’s beaches, like most beaches in forest land. But this is redwood country. The logs on Crescent City’s beaches are massive. When the tsunami hit, it picked up those logs and used them as battering rams that knocked down buildings blocks away from the waterfront.

Crescent City has rebuilt, and has put a number of projects in place to protect the city from future water-borne disasters. Those attempts not-withstanding, I saw the city’s harbor destroyed by a tsunami in early 2007. Crescent City is California’s leading crabbing port, and the port became one of my favorite photographic landscapes.

 Surfing?  This far north?

Set at almost the 42nd parallel (the dividing line between California and Oregon), you’d think the city would be too far north for surfing.  But those intrepid individuals cover themselves in wet suits and take to the waves, even in January, when I stood on the beach taking shot after shot. Stopping by the nearby surf shop, the clerk told me that the surfers had noticed me. “He must be a professional! Look at that equipment.” It was one of the proudest moments of my life.

I took the photos in the video above all on January 7th, 2007.  For a look at other photos I’ve taken during the first week of January, click here

Of Course There’s a Sales Pitch

The photograph is available from my Etsy Shop, LightIntoArt, in a wide variety of sizes and formats. Choose glossy photo paper prints in three sizes: 8×10, 11×14, 16×20. Or if you prefer something larger, choose canvas prints in 16×20, 24×36, or 30×40 inches. Finally, for a spectacular display, you can get this image in 3 panel side-by-side canvas prints at 24 x 72, 36 x 72, or 40 x 90 inches. The video below gives you an idea of what these sizes are like in a living room, bed room or office setting.