Beautiful Human Beings: Writing to share with you an amazing day we had before the summer beach season kicked into full effect on the East Coast. Friday, May 26, was the day before Memorial Day weekend, which marks the start of lifeguards, beach fees, restricted surfing zones, diminished swell, and mobs of people flocking East Coast beaches. The swell was pretty well hyped across the surf forecasting websites. Many people woke up early and surfed NY while the winds were favorably from the NW. We held back in Brooklyn while CSC crew filtered into our home base. When everyone was assembled we piled into the van and headed south across the Verrazano and Outer Bay Crossing bridges towards the plentiful peaks of northern NJ. The crew was Bryce Vaughan, Brendan Lynch, Bryan Doring, Christina Nizar, Helena Cortes, Juan Heredia, and me (Dion). We were also joined in NJ by Phil Tabuas and Brad Schiller.
We hit a bit of traffic on the way down, but the vibes and conversations and music in the van were so good it seemed like a tiny hiccup. The waves that greeted us also justified our patience through the road work infested highways: it was chest to head high, offshore, perfect, and empty at the first place we checked. Following our "never leave waves" philosophy, we got our gear together, commandeered a lifeguard tower, and settled in for the day. In true Conatus fashion, Juan, Bryan, Helena, and I all took turns manning the handy Sony a6000, to document the whole epic affair.
It was definitely a more advanced day. For this reason we only brought two students — Christina and Helena — who have proven that they are willing to push their limits in stuff with a bit more power (we have other students of this caliber, but they had to work :( . . . ). Conditions did prove to be challenging, but both of the women managed to bag a few gems.
This all day surf was fueled by water and beach snacks. Big shout out to Helena for making tuna and egg empanadas. I brought hard boiled eggs, bbq peanuts, and bananas. Juan made a coffee run midday, just before we were hit with a small rain squall, which passed quickly, and made the light incredible. We kept pinching ourselves because no one else seemed to want to surf this beach. Perhaps it was so much better elsewhere, but it didn't matter to us. We had found a slice of heaven and were happy to stay there. Brendan was especially stoked because this was one week before he set off for a two month stint in Mexico City where he will be producing a body of art work for a show he has there in October.
We left the beach at around 8p and took a bee line for Brooklyn. Then we had a pizza and video viewing party at Conatus HQ, where we were joined by Mariza Daras, Anya Ferring, and Kaitlin Ward. Truly an epic day. Enjoy more of the photos below.