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My First Surf at Martins Beach

Updated: Jul 2, 2019

My first surf at Martins Beach in 2012 was one I won't forget. It was a beautiful Fall day, a Monday, and one of those September days in the Bay Area when it's hard to stay focused on work.

A few days before I had paddled to Martins Beach from Tunitas Creek, the beach just to the south. It was a long paddle, over a mile, along sheer cliffs, and probably a few Great Whites below. Not a recommended way to get there!

I loaded up the car and drove down to Martins Beach after lunch. I parked on a side street a little north of the locked gate, suited up and jogged along PCH. I went around the gate and headed down the road to the beach.

I was taking a few photos on the beach and getting ready to paddle out when an SUV came speeding down the road. A woman jumped out and started yelling at me that I had to leave the beach and she was going to call the Sheriff. I told her go ahead "Call the Sheriff".

I threw my backpack on top of a large rock surrounded by water — my car keys and iPhone were in there — and paddled out into the empty lineup. The woman stood next to her SUV watching me catch wave after wave.

After about 20 minutes she left. I thought she had finally given up... After catching another wave I was paddling back out and that's when I saw them — two Sheriff's vehicles rolling down the hill.

The officers got out of their vehicles and started hiking across the beach to the cove where I was surfing.

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