|Nate Hanson photo|
|Nate Hanson photo|
After lunch though, we tore ourselves away and paddled over to Otter Point, where big swells came rolling in. At first it looked a bit imposing, like we might not find anywhere close to shore where we could play. Then Nate suggested we try out the water behind a big rock. The swells would come in and smash against the rock, expending most of their energy before seeping into the cauldron behind it. All we had to do was watch for the big ones and hang-on.
The sun shone brightly, lighting up the foam like snow. I was struck by how beautiful it was- the massive green waves that appeared on the horizon and exploded just beyond the ledge, reaching around and over the rocks with bouncy piles of water and foam. I managed to hang on to my camera and get a few shots as the waves knocked us around.
I posted a few shots on Facebook and they received some "not for me" comments... which is correct. This isn't a spot for everyone. It might not be very enjoyable if you don't have good bracing skills, a dependable combat roll and the ability to perform creative rescues. And of course we'd just spent the morning surfing, and were primed for some bumpy water. We took a careful look before going in, watching to see what happened when the biggest sets rolled-in.
But in reality, we mostly just hung-on and enjoyed it. Despite the big appearance, it was a relatively safe spot with low consequences and easy-enough escape routes.
We continued around the point, looking for fun spots, and the adrenaline, or perhaps lunch began to wear off. The surfing alone is enough to take it out of you, and we hadn't been paddling much lately.
As the late afternoon light began lighting the hills we paddled past Otter Cliffs and found a few more features. The swell was smaller on the east side.
But plenty big for some fun.
We finally decided we'd had it and turned around, heading back toward the launch. The tide had changed just enough that it felt like an entirely different stretch of coast.