Big Surf

Mike Parsons catching a big wave at Jaws

I’ve been driving back and forth through Malibu over the last week, which has given me a front-row seat for some of the huge surf we’ve been having in Southern California. The LA Times has an article today about some of the people who’ve gotten into trouble with the waves, including a young man who apparently was killed when the boat he was in capsized off Ventura. From Deadly high waves batter coast:

Late Friday, an 18-year-old remained missing after a small boat carrying him and three other family members capsized in rough seas near the mouth of the Santa Clara River, officials said.

The skiff carrying a father, two sons and his daughter capsized about 12:30 p.m. roughly 100 yards from shore, authorities said.

Three of the family members made it to shore, but one son did not, said Fire Marshal Glen Albright of the Ventura City Fire Department.

The others were taken to Ventura County Medical Center with minor injuries. Authorities searched for the missing man until darkness fell. The search is expected to resume this morning.

The article also describes how a surfer drowned off Carlsbad State Beach on Thursday, and how the Venice Pier has been closed until further notice due to damage from the waves. The surf is expected to subside over the next few days, before building again next week.

Photo: That’s a still I snagged from an unauthorized video clip that’s been floating around the net for a while. It shows Mike Parsons being towed onto a big wave at Jaws on Maui during a competition a few years ago. If you haven’t seen the video it’s definitely worth a look. One commenter claimed the clip is from the movie Riding Giants, but having watched that movie I didn’t see that clip in it (though the movie is very much worth watching, regardless).

Update: Oh, and now another source I googled up indicates that the clip is actually from the beginning of Billabong Odyssey. And since brief moments of the clip appear in the film’s trailer, I’d say that’s a pretty good bet.

Later update: So I’ve now watched Billabong Odyssey, and I can tell you that yup, it’s definitely from that movie. It’s basically the first minute of the film, with Parsons’ big wave (which was the high-scoring wave at the Tow-In World Cup in January 2002) also being featured in the extended coverage of the event toward the end of the film.

One Response to “Big Surf”

  1. Dennis Swanson Says:

    A time to watch from shore

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