Got good surf pics?
"He's down off Jeness, nestled in the rocks. My dog found him around 6AM this morning." She replied.
A half hour, later I pull up and slide across the frozen tundra. I walk about 200 yards south to where Lynne said the seal was lying. Sure enough, he's hanging out in the sun and sand, just chilling by himself. There was no one around. I pull out the Canon G5 point and shoot digi and start snapping away.
upset almost immediately.
Just leave 'em be.
So I took a few shots, and said good-bye. He was straining trying to check me out, everywhere I stood. He looked uncomfortable. Rolling around, trying to position himself in a defensive posture. I had to admit, he was pretty cool looking. I was glad that Lynne called, and I got a chance to meet this little pup. All 50 lbs of him.
The male Hooded Seals can grow up to 9' long. That's a lot of beef. And they can live up to 35 years. The seal I saw was only a few weeks old.
It got me thinking about all the things we get to see as surfers. I'm sure you've all seen your share of Seals.
I remember this one seal back in the winter of 2000-2001 when I was on my Catch a Wave for Gus Fundraiser. Surfing everyday, for 365 consecutive days, around these parts, you tend to see and notice things, that you would not normally see on an average day at the beach.
I became friends with this one big Seal. He would show up everyday for about a week. Right there at 10th Street. I would talk to him, much like I spoke with the seal pup on Friday. I told him what I was doing, and why I was doing it. He would just look at me. Staring.
Blinking his eyes and staring.
I felt like Tom Hanks in the movie "Cast Away". When Tom was talking to a soccer ball. Except, I was talking to a live seal, and I was also able to drive home everyday. I looked forward to seeing him that week, during that cold winter. He would pop up next to me, look at me and blink his big eyes at me. Then he would dive under, only to pop up on the other side of me.
He was very friendly.
Or at least, he seemed friendly to me. Hell, for all I know, he could of been sizing me up, trying to decide whether or not I was worth biting and eating.
Oh yea. Seals have teeth. Nasty sharp teeth. And some seals can be aggressive. I've been bumped by one before. They can really get up a good head of steam out in the water. I remember sitting on my board about 25 years ago. I was surfing this reef in Massachusetts, when a seal bumped right into me. Dam near knocked me off my board. The Pirate sitting next to me, almost started crying. He was so scared. I just laughed it off.
But I never forgot it.
If you find a seal on the beach and it looks fine but tired, Leave it alone. If he's distressed, or hurt, call the New England Aquarium. Otherwise leave em be. The ocean and the beaches are their home. They are the real locals. Besides, it would be like someone trying to help you get to your feet if they found you lounging on the couch after a hard days work, or some other strenuous ordeal. You wouldn't want to be hassled if you were trying to rest.
Speaking of seeing things as surfers.
snowboarding on Thursday with two other local surfers. John
and William. It had snowed all night Wednesday, and we
knew the conditions would be perfect. Powder and sun. What none of us
knew (and didn't want to know), was what the surf was doing. Look, I've
said this before, and I will say it again. For me personally...
However, and I do mean 'however.' Once I find myself on the mountains, I can't help but marvel at the sheer beauty and wonder of the winter scenes in our New England Mountain Ranges. It truly is breathtaking.
There were a few moments on Thursday morning when it was just William, John and myself in the knee deep powder. Seeing the views from the top of the mountain, and and taking in the pure rush of "surfing" down the trails makes for an amazing day of pure unadulterated stoke. And I can't stress this enough.
We surf down the mountains.
We're surfers who snowboard. There's a big difference in those who surf and snowboard and those who skate and snowboard. Surfers surf down the mountain. Skaters look for things to jump off of and crash into down the mountain.
surfer who snowboards. I like being connected to the wave and the mountain.
Call me old school. Or just call me old. But the fun, and stoke, 'we
surfers' get when we surf down the mountains is, 'where it's at' for
Just because I personally can't do it, does not mean I don't want to shoot you doing it. Hell no. Call me. Let us record your feat for all to see and cringe over. I know some of you younger guys are getting ideas. Some deep water shelf/slab that you want to tackle on the next macking swell. I know you're thinking about it.
The Devil's A_ _s is one. That deep water break off of Rte 1-A...is ripe for the picking. Just strap on the Big Brass Gonads and give me a call. You surf it and I'll shoot it.
way...there was surf on Thursday. I know this, because Kevin
Doherty sent me the photos he shot down in southern New England
to prove it. Doh!
of being agitated...and honestly, I have been known to get agitated
at times. But I'm trying, lord knows I'm trying. Last week I drove my
son's vehicle to get a quick oil change. The month prior to this, his
vehicle had been inadvertently beeping it's horn every time he pulled
into the driveway. I found this out when I asked him one day "Why
the hell do you beep your horn every time you come home? What is this
Mr. Roger's neighborhood?"
"It only beeps when you turn the wheel at a sharp angle?" I ask again..my agitation growing more intense at every revelation. "Yes dad. It's no big deal" he replies trying to move along to another subject.
horn goes off when he turns the steering wheel. That needs to get fixed.
I offer to take his vehicle in to get the oil changed, and fix the incessant
I can't stop it. It's like the dam thing is possessed.
It not only beeps when I turn, but when I travel on a straight away. In fact, the horn never stopped beeping. I'm thinking to myself, "how the hell did he drive this thing for a month like this?" And of course, other motorists are giving me the, "What's up?" look. They think I am impatient and want them to move faster, or get out of the way. It's too cold to lower my window and explain to them that I have no control over the horn. So I just shake my head. And I become very, very, very agitated.
In fact, I am beyond agitation.
The only thing that pulled me out of my funk, was my wife who was following me to the service station, she was laughing hysterically at my situation. And it was at that moment, that my agitation became funny. I laughed too.
Then I looked down at the gas gauge, and saw that Max had about a breath of gas, left in the tank. Agitated, I stood there in the bitter cold, and filled the gas tank.
The latest Surfers Journal is out, and there's a great story and photos by New Hampshire's own Brian Nevin's amazing Nicaragua experience. I highly recommend you picking one up and reading it. It covers the whole Nica scene that we've been talking about the last few weeks.
and photos are well laid out in the classic Surfers Journal style. Brian's
writing is as good as his photos. Good on you Nevins for helping
to bring this must needed story to light. The children of the dump are
a long way from being OK, but at least now the story has some legs.
With the 10,734 plus readers who read this blog every week, and
the Surfers Journal subscription list, the Children of the darkness
may one day see the light.
Thank you again for your support. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact SHI by email email@example.com or 207-669-8254.
some of my weekly observances:
still time to score one of Brian Nevins's canvas print orders.
Support ALL The photographers who contribute to Ralph's Pic Of
The Week Especially: Ed O'Connell, John Carden, Brian Nevins,
Bernie Baker, Jamie Wade, Kevin Doherty, Lenny Nichols, Chris Shipley,
The Phantom, Ross Kunkel, Bob Consentino, and Chris Thompson and
all the others.
my friends...Surfing heals all wounds....
1976 "Little" Geoffy Haenn (Middle) or Billy Mumy?
Wait...this is Head High! We thought the storm was moving too fast to
produce any surf.
2009 Today This week January 2009
When our friend Jimmy Dunn is not telling jokes, he likes to
Last Summer The Brickhouse Gang on the boards of length
2009 Beyond New England by New Englanders this week January 2009
2009 The Westies and The Phantom
2009 PARTING SHOT- ..."Here Tommy Try This Fudge"
Please in the name of Steve Grogan, Drew Bledsoe and Babe Parelli! What
the hell is Tom Brady