Last Day of Summer

October 27, 2008
By Scott Lampert, Culver, IN

The swell was different. Already four feet high and not breaking yet. Either a rogue wave or the first of a monstrous set. It grew higher and higher, breaking around eight feet, exactly what I wanted.
I paddled hard and leapt to my feet as the wave overtook me. Rushing down the face and turning to my left, I entered the barrel of the wave. All surfers look forward to the barrel, the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, the whole reason for surfing. The roar of the wave and the turquoise brilliance of the tunnel sent shivers through me. Ahead I could see the barrel closing – I had three or four seconds to get out or be slammed into the sand.
I leaned as far forward as I could and picked up speed. Just as the barrel collapsed, I shot through the opening to the surprised shouts of my friends. I paddled over to them with a smile on my face as they congratulated me on nailing a near perfect wave. I accepted the praise and suggested we go in for lunch. They agreed and we paddled in to our spot on the famous Zuma Beach.
After stripping out of our wetsuits and soaking the girls we were with, we settled down in the warm sand to enjoy our lunches. I had packed a grilled cheese, grapes, chips, some fruit snacks, and two Gatorades all of which I devoured. When everyone was done eating, we lay down and enjoyed the heat of the warm sand on our bellies.
Fifteen minutes later when everyone was feeling too hot again, we carried out a tradition my friends and I have been doing since we started coming to the beach. We rolled, jumped, and wrestled until out bodies were covered with sand. We ran into the water and dove in getting all the sand off us and cooling us down.
Since we were already in the water, we went bodysurfing. We swam out and were rewarded with a nice set of five footers. My friends and I let the first wave pass, knowing that the best wave is the third one in the set. A real beauty formed and we scrambled for the best position to take it. I managed to be in the right spot at the right time for this one, and, about two seconds before the wave hit, I started swimming.
The wave surged beneath me, and, as I was about to fall down the face and be caught in the whitewash, I turned and entered the barrel. Just like every other time I had entered a barrel, I could never get over how awesome it is, and I wanted to do something equally as awesome to exit it. I spun my body counterclockwise to the wave and shot out the top in a perfect barrel roll. After an hour of bodysurfing, we packed up and went home.
As we drove back home through Malibu Canyon, I thought about my last beach trip of the summer, about how I’ll never forget it, about surfing the California coast.

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This article has 1 comment.

ca said...
on Nov. 7 2008 at 11:26 pm
yeah scott that was awesome!!!

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