Category Archives: Aliso Beach Surf

Dude Offered Me A Taco

DUDE OFFERED ME A TACO

 

I was surprised this morning how much energy was in the water at Salt Creek today.  It wasn’t huge but it was fairly consistent and punchy.  The bulk of the morning I spend body boarding the shore break with friends.  After a couple of hours and an influx of new eager wave riders, I decided to exit the liquid stage.  My friends decided to whether the crowd increase for about an hour longer and I strolled up the hill cursing under my breath as I often do at that very steep hill.  I was already cramping and tired before the incline delivered a final blow to my desire to exert myself physically.

As I often do, I run into members of the Salt Creek Community.  There are some truly amazing people from a variety of wave riding disciplines that I have enjoyed surfing with and talking to over the years.  Ezra rolled up and parked his car in between the traffic lanes going each direction to check the waves.  We had a 15 minute conversation that included how Salt Creek was more like a community than a public beach because of how many wave riders have surfed this beach for a long time and many people know each other from over the years.  He said, ” I wonder if it is like that at other beaches?”.  I would like to believe so but know that Salt Creek is a special place.

He parked in the lot and proceeded to strike up a conversation with a pretty gal and I waited for my friends to limp up the hill from their surf session.  After chatting with everyone for 20 minutes, hunger kicked in and they all zipped down PCH to Chronic Tacos.  We all agreed to get back to the coast and check Aliso Beach in Laguna due to a rapidly draining tide that favors the shore break.  I headed up to Laguna Hills to get a juice at Mother’s Market and do some shopping.

Jack beat me to Aliso and had already rained on my parade texting me that it was too small.  I was already headed there so I decided to give it a look anyways.  The winds were perfect and the water was a sparkling blue-green.  I was on the phone with Scotty Carter telling him that conditions were perfect minus the surf.  When I told Scotty I thought it was 3 foot a guy cooking at one of Aliso’s barbecue pits said, “Nah, it’s like 6 foot out there right now!”  I laughed and politely told him not today.  He went on to make a comment about how rough it was to which I explained, “that is Aliso Beach.”  He offered me a canned beer that I declined telling him, “Thank you, but no I recently quit.  Nobody likes a quitter”.  He laughed and said, ” You aren’t all that bad”.  I showed my appreciation and continued down to the water’s edge.

There were waves for sure.  It was possible even to ride them with travel time in the barrel but just not enough energy to compel me to paddle out.  There were gentle offshore winds, beautiful water color and glassy conditions.  The winds were feathering back these little wedging peaks back so I snapped a couple of photos on my IPhone.  Knowing I would not paddle out there I walked back up the sand berm and made my way toward the dude that offered me the beer.  I told him to watch for lifeguards and Laguna Beach Police Department whom I have seen write tickets for alcohol on the beach.  He appreciated that and then the dude offered me a taco.  Regrettably I had to decline.  I was so full from a large juice and a couple of organic food bars from Mother’s that I could not eat anything more.  I felt bad for having to decline.  He had the chicken perfectly barbecued and all the fixings for a taco meal and told him everything looked great.

Call me an old sap but that generous offered seemed like the world that has long passed us by.  We are so technologically connected and so inter-personally disconnected that  friendly encounters like that seem so far and few between.  It saddens me.  They were very nice people and I enjoyed talking to them.  It is those types of dealings with strangers that gives the world hope and we all should take note of how small conversations between strangers lead to meaningful dialogue and friendships. In a perfect world, the dude offered me a taco and I was hungry.  In today’s world, this afternoon at Aliso Beach, I had already eaten and wasn’t hungry.  I do appreciate their gesture and hope that people take note of this and look to have conversations like this wherever they go.  They mean so much more than we give them credit for.

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Road Rash

ROAD RASH

 

It’s not what you think!  I didn’t wipe out on a mountain bike, skateboard, roller blades or motorcycle, but the result was the same.  It was painful reminder from Mother Nature that we are not always in control!

 

road rash, scrapes, cuts, wounds

Road Rash from Aliso Beach Beat Down

Yesterday, I met up with a friend to go body board Salt Creek when the reports were less than ideal from wave riders coming up from the beach.  Between Saturday and Sunday Morning, the swell had increased, became more westerly, and by consequence, became more closed out. We figured we could come back if we absolutely had no other alternative.  It was 86 degrees, the sun was shining and there was little or no wind down at the coast.  We decided to head up to Aliso Beach.  I must admit, Aliso has not been on my radar and the last time I was there had to be before my terrible car accident in June.  There were whispers of quality surf there the day before, but as Salt Creek proved, what a difference a day can make when it comes to surf.

The aqua green-blue water that is a hallmark of the beautiful Laguna Beach Coastline, was glassy smooth and inviting.  The tide was a bit on the high side when we arrived so it had that wonky Aliso Beach look that only a much lower tide would correct.  We had time on our side without the threat of a late morning onshore wind to get in the way of our plans.  As 3 of us stood on the beach, the tide continued to recede and an occasional wave or two would peel through that motivated me to paddle out.  Having successfully worn trunks the day before at Salt Creek, I was excited once again to leave the wet suit out of the equation.  Because I feel so weighed down by the extra neoprene, it was great to once again be in 67 degree water unencumbered.  It was November 13th!  For the last 3 years I have been in the water without a wet suit during November.  Crazy!

With trunks and rash guard I plunged into the Pacific by myself leaving two friends on the beach trying to will themselves into less than ideal conditions.  There must have been 3 guys out in the lineup spread way out with a couple of skim boarders lining the shore and doing their thing.  I got a couple of waves right away and I expected my friends to paddle out.  It was decent size and it kept improving as time went by with plenty of racey waves of consequence.  As I continued to get waves and the soft top surfing crew started to paddle out and push me further north.  I continued to get decent waves. After I had been out about an hour and a half, I decided to get out to find out if my bros had abandoned me for better waves reported at another spot.  I was a little salty.

When I got to the parking lot, I noticed by friend’s SUV still in the parking lot.  He must have gone out, I thought to myself.  After putting my body board and fins away, I walked south along the parking lot and spotted my friends.  Had it not been for two or three perfect waves coming through, I would have called it a day.  On my second wave, a chunky right popped up and my friends were hooting me in.  It was a boomeranging wave that slung me pretty good.  I knew the thing was going to heave and after I got about 20 yards it unleashed its inner beast mode and  began to hollow out quickly.  I saw it coming and was perfectly slotted when the thing closed out and slammed me to the bottom on my back.  After having a fin lost to the ocean, the wave violently dragged me over some rocks and I knew that I was cut.  Most likely the rocks came from Aliso Creek and migrate south towards the reef with predominant West and West Northwest Swell Directions.  It felt like someone dragged me over a reef forcefully while lying on my back.  Yep, it was good old fashioned road rash on my lower back.  It kind of sucks!  I suppose that it could have been worse because that wasn’t the only thing that happened middle part of the beach that was alarming.  You will have to read my next post to find out what that means.  Until then I am lubed up with Neosporin and hoping that the road rash goes away quickly. It stings and is uncomfortable, but that wave was worth every scrape I got!  Be careful out there!

And yes….I know crack kills!  When I had the picture taken I was less concerned about my crack and more concerned about the severity of the injury.  It didn’t feel so good!

 

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Foam Top Board Carnage

FOAM TOP BOARD CARNAGE

With a high surf advisory in effect, there were a lot of eyes on south orange county beaches looking for good waves.  Predictably, Aliso Beach had heavy shore break waves that were good enough for wave riders to tame a few beasts.  The first thing I noticed when I crossed the sidewalk to the sand from the parking lot was a foam top surf board in two pieces leaning against a trash can.  It took less than 5 minutes of watching a 5 pack of two body boarders and 3 foam top board surfers to see a young dude get swallowed up by a good size barrel and crack his foam top board in two.  When the surf gets that big, and knowing how coming out of a barrel at Aliso Beach is rare, it is not difficult to wrap the mind around foam top board carnage. Yesterday’s conditions were a perfect recipe for leaving the beach with a foam top in two pieces. The resulting foam top board carnage should be surprising to no one.

In between the fellas trying not to crack their foam tops in half, local Wedge rider Whale was gliding into some big rights with impressive style.  His effortless drop knee take offs and barrel travel time were incredible to watch.  Having been a friend of Henry Long for decades, I really appreciate the way Whale attacks rights in a drop knee stance.  Every time I looked back out at the lineup while talking to a friend on the sand there Whale was picking off some of the best waves I saw that afternoon.  I would say he concluded his surf session very happy.  The guy was absolutely ripping!

I don’t know what the return policy is on these foam top boards but it has to be a pain in the you know what to be constantly breaking them.  With a high surf advisory expected to last until 6:00 pm this evening, I would be shocked if there weren’t the remains of additional form boards today.  Hopefully, I can get out of work in time to go get a few myself this afternoon.

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Austin Keen

AUSTIN KEEN

Austin Keen

Austin Keen With Sombrero

Austin Keen may have the most well known dreadlocks in the wave riding community of Southern California.  When I first saw this skim boarder, I was sitting in the south corner of Aliso Beach trying to catch a wave or two with friends in between the skim boarders connecting the side waves to peaks at Aliso Beach.  There Austin was pumping his board and getting to solid peaks effortlessly with his dreadlocks bouncing along the way. It is hard to miss a guy like that. He is an elite talent and he makes skim boarding look easy.  Honestly, there is nothing easy about this sport. It takes athleticism, quickness, good judgment, balance, timing, core strength and surfing ability.  I was talking to a friend on the beach as we watched Austin take on some mean Aliso Beach shore break and when I mentioned to her how easy Austin made it look she said, “The good ones do”!  Indeed!

I don’t know a whole lot about Austin but what I do know speaks to the kind of person he is.  He possesses a good nature and is friendly.  Despite his taking skim boarding by storm as a transplant from the East Coast, there is nothing arrogant or pretentious about him.  Those who know him, including professional photographer Adeeb Howrani who is a close friend of mine, speak very highly of him. I believe that with a group of core skim boarders in Laguna Beach, Austin Keen is contributing nicely to inspiring a young up and coming generation of skim boarders that has the sport in a great place and with a bright future.

The waves yesterday were heavy at Aliso Beach.  I watched skimmers choose waves and then have trouble with their carves once they connected to the incoming peaks. It seemed like the distance that some had to travel to meet the incoming wave sucked the momentum out of the run making the ability to aggressively carve back into a wave to difficult. It was like they were dead in their tracks and not able to make the carve and back down the wave for a ride. Then there was Austin Keen sliding out to waves with style and fanning spray back as he carved back towards shore and dropped into the barrel.

Photographer Scotty Carter thought it would be a great idea for Austin Keen to take a run with a sombrero.  He looked like he was headed for a fiesta!  Don’t ask why but the Fast Times at Ridgemont High quote from Spiccoli comes to mind where he says to Mr. Hand, “Certainly there is nothing wrong with a little fiesta on our time”!  That is still funny to me today!  So Austin slapped the hat on over his dreads and waited patiently for a wave.  Given the lack of comfort with that hat he scanned the water for the right wave. He spotted a foamy inside one with nice size and went sprinting towards the incoming wall with board ready to drop. He slid out to the wave and whipped a nice carve off the top, ducked under a curtain of white water, came out briefly and then was swallowed with sombrero in a nice close out barrel.  I am not sure that will ever happen again but it was entertaining to watch. Maybe  the VIC Skim Board Championship but[probably won’t ever, have a sombrero wearing skim board contest.  Austin Keen has already thrown his hat in the ring!

 

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Death Grip

DEATH GRIP

death grip, aliso beach death grip, parents beware, Aliso Beach High Surf

This wave washing through parents hanging on to their kids for dear life prompted a lifeguard to instruct them back up the beach and to hold on to their kids with a death grip.

With heavy surf pounding Aliso Beach on Labor Day, this is the description the lifeguard gave to parents on how tightly they needed to hold their kids in the water at the shoreline.  Of course it would be better if these naive people stayed away from the water on these types of days altogether but none of them check marine reports about how dangerous the surf is before they show up on an extraordinarily warm holiday to end the Summer Season of 2015.  Because of the ignorance of many people to the evil intentions of heavy shore break waves, young lifeguards were tasked with moving people back from the water rushing in.  The lifeguards would walk away and the kids would creep back towards the water under the supervision of their parents who are no more knowledgeable than they are.  Trust me these parents weren’t saving anyone should something go wrong which makes their cavalier attitudes toward the ocean all the more perplexing.

I watched one man hold his infant on a body board and set him in the water as waves pushed up the sloping beach and berm.  The kid would not have made it if he had been sucked past the parent.  Big waves were smashing the shore and the lifeguards were keeping most out of the water.  Other parents were holding on to their kids with one arm with waves nearly knocking both of them over.  Sets came in up to 8 feet and perhaps a few at up to 10 feet.  Unfortunately for lifeguards, the largest waves to hit Laguna and Southern California fell on one of the busiest beach holidays of the year. I watched one lifeguard leave a group of kids whom he told at least 5 times while I was there to move away from the water’s edge and I noticed him shaking his head.  I get it.  He is well aware of how tough the job is to keep everyone safe when many choose not to take his advice.  How many times do you have to ask someone to do something that is in their best interest? The job these guys and gals did over the weekend was spectacular and I respect them to no end.  Laguna Beach on a city and county level have some of the best lifeguards in the world.  Preferable to the death grip is for beach visitors to avoid contact with the water during large wave events.  Fat chance though!  That water is so alluring, even when it is dangerous.  Those same rough waters left a 26 year old man unconscious and needing to be resuscitated just south of Aliso at West Street Beach.  He was airlifted to the hospital and although it was reported that he regained  pulse, I don’t know if he made it or not.  I thought I heard a Laguna Beach Police Officer talking to an Aliso Beach lifeguard saying that he may not have made it.  I hope he is okay.

Aliso Beach can be incredibly dangerous because of the way the waves break close to shore and push violently up a sloping sand beach.  It then returns back down the slope rapidly and trying to drag anything in its path with it back into the water where large waves detonating on the shore are waiting for the unfortunate souls who are sucked back into the water. That is why the lifeguards look at a shore of people at water’s edge with kids and inexperienced adults and tell them to hold on to their kids with the death grip.  The even better idea is to tell the parents and their children to stay out of the water….end of story.

Folks, this picture is a perfect example of what happens when big waves at Aliso Beach rush up the sand berm trying to knock everyone over like bowling pins and then sweep them all away.  Some were in worse positions than others but none were safe.  Fortunately, no one was hurt or injured but the potential for tragedy was great!

Beach visitors should check surf reports before coming down.  It’s obvious that kids love the water and want to jump right in.  That unbridaled enthusiasm for the water could end in the loss of life.  Talk to your lifeguards about conditions and safety.  They are nice people and will give you reality of the surf conditions.

 

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High Surf Advisory

HIGH SURF ADVISORY

San Diego, Orange and LA County Beaches have a high surf advisory with riptide warnings.  I left the water of Salt Creek yesterday looking at a shoreline getting beaten up by heavy waves and dangerous rip currents.  A father was throwing a football into the waiting arms of his young boy.  A dad was knocked over like a bowling pin with his daughter cradled in his arms.  Conditions were not and will not be good today for the inexperienced and children.  Salt Creek has a powerful shore break and from what I saw yesterday, and with expected increasing surf, keep out of the water.  It is way too dangerous and lifeguards have their hands full.

In late July, a video was produced showing over 400 rescues in dangerous conditions and rip tides along LA County Beaches.  At the end of  August, a Fox News Video shows a dramatic and traumatizing video of lifeguards pulling swimmers from rip tides. Just yesterday a Go Pro video surfaced showing lifeguards plucking a distressed swimmer from the turbulent waters of Huntington Beach.

Parents, this message about a high surf advisory is really for you because you are the guardians of your children.  You are fortunate enough to have the backing of OC Lifeguards at Salt Creek and Aliso Beach.  The problem is that it is Labor Day Weekend and they have a lot of people to look after and protect.  They are good but their job of keeping us all protected is massive.  It takes one wave sucking a child out into high surf conditions for a family to lose a child.  I see you walking your kids dressed in bathing suits and rash guards while carrying boogie boards down the hill and I think to myself, “Oh no.  That looks like trouble.”

Waves are expected to reach as high as 8 foot today. I know a little something about being a kid and being excited to get in the water.  This weekend isn’t one of those weekends for your children to be in the waves in Southern California.  Last week I was told by a young boy that he was a great swimmer after helping him on to my board.  He was in trouble and had gone under twice before I got to him. I don’t know if he would have made it had someone not reached him prior to the next set wave crashing through. Orange County Lifeguards will warn people all day today to stay in waste deep water and they will bring back any swimmer without fins due to the high surf and dangerous conditions.  My hope is that we don’t lose anyone this weekend.  When I left yesterday the recipe for trouble was brewing with the large crashing waves and treacherous rip currents.  The best advice I can give related to kids is keep them out of the water and have them live to enjoy the water another day.  Please remember for every man, woman and child that has to be rescued eyes and manpower are taken off the rest of us.  So keep it safe beach goers!

 

Fox Video of lifeguard saves

 

Channel 5 Video on 400 plus LA County Rescues

 

 

 

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Aliso Beach Tropical Rains

ALISO BEACH TROPICAL RAINS

For surf, wave riders that frequent Aliso Beach and Laguna coves north and south of it,  we have been stuck in this doldrums of small waves over the last month and a half which I would characterize as a slap in the face by El Nino. Truth be told, El Nino can strike out and we are off to a very slow start.  With a  stingy high pressure system in the South Pacific, swell generating storms are not making it into the Aliso Beach and Southern California Window so we have all placed a lot of hope on our dear friend Hurricane Delores.

We have heard all week that Hurricane Delores was going to deliver and it looks like as of today, that she will deliver on one of those promises.  All of the talking heads on channels 2,4,5, 7 and 9 have been yapping about how we would get rain from the hurricane.  I can attest that we are experiencing Aliso Beach tropical rains and yes we are talking about measurable precipitation.  The ground is wet and given our extended drought, I would love to see more of this. Rain was given a 50% chance of happening today and 30% tomorrow so let’s hope that we get enough water to rejuvenate some of the plant life and landscapes that have become rather crispy during this drought and Southern California water regulations.  As I type this the rain has begun to fall more aggressively and I am enjoying the cool and refreshing air.

Since we are talking about a decent shot of rain here, I would like to remind everyone of the dangers of Aliso Creek.  Runoff that is seeping into Aliso Creek will bring with it motor oils, brake dust, pesticides and various pollutants from our streets.  Experts warn swimmers and recreational ocean water enthusiasts to avoid contact with ocean water for 72 hours after a rain event.  Aliso Beach tropical rains are welcomed with open arms but may dampen any surf we get from Hurricane Delores.   I read that the Brooks Street Surf Contest in Laguna was cancelled due to small surf and the potential for lightning.  I know some of you will ignore warnings and be out there anyways so be careful.  There is a possibility I will be out there so I am not passing judgment!

While the storm did bring rain as promised, the surf appears to be lagging behind.  All week I have been staring at the Aliso Beach Surf Reports hoping for some sort of magic to finally arrive. Predictions ranged from 3-5 foot to 6-8 foot for waves for Saturday, Sunday and into Monday.  The waves are small today.  Needless to say there is a lot of disappointment in the weakening of the storm that has caused it to under-perform in the wave generation department.  As for the storm, it delivered Aliso Beach tropical rains and it appears it will give us a quick shot of tropical surf for Sunday and quickly leave us as if it were never real.  After the departure of tropical surf we are then  back to a pattern of marginal surf for a spell.  Thank you for the rain Delores, perhaps your path will inspire larger storms with better wave making talents!

Also posted in Aliso Beach, Aliso Beach News, Aliso Beach Park, Aliso Beach Waves, Aliso Creek, Aliso Creek Beach, Aliso River, Laguna, Laguna Beach, Laguna News, South Laguna Beach, South Laguna Beach News Tagged , , , , , , |

Aliso Beach Surf

ALISO BEACH SURF

So it appears that we may get enough energy from Hurricane Delores to wake up Aliso Beach surf.  The much anticipated storm finally got into Southern California’s swell window as a Category 3 hurricane with sustained wind speeds above 100 miles per hour.  The storm has taken it’s time moving out from the shadow of the tip of Baja and hugging the peninsula as it slowly moves northwest and comes apart in cooler offshore waters and increased vertical wind shear.

Since spring and early summer, Aliso Beach surf has been nothing to high five over.  While I am sure there have been plenty of playful days for the local skim board crew, the surfing and body boarding community would prefer to see Aliso Beach surf off the sand and shore. A few days ago,  I listened to a local body boarder complain about the aggressive nature of Aliso Beach skim boarders and it struck me as funny! I am all for surfing etiquette and making sure that the unspoken rules of  wave priority are followed in some utopian system of fairness, but the complaining party, lost in his own negativity, fails to understand a few things.  Aliso Beach is for the most part a skim board beach. We would all like to get more Aliso Beach surf but the waves aren’t tailor made for body boarding or surfing and without that pier, the days of waves suitable for body boarding and surfing are far and few between.  Sure enough, this particular body boarder was in the south corner of Aliso Beach where refraction of water and side waves make for the best skimming conditions around. To me, Aliso Beach has historically and is presently a skim board beach. There is a saying in urban sports that says don’t hate the players hate the game.  What I am getting at is don’t hate the skim boarders because nature makes the beach more conducive to skim boarding.  That is nothing that body boarders or skim boarders control and it is what it is.  Honestly, I love watching those guys skim and I just tip my hat to them because they are extremely talented down at Aliso Beach.

So we will see what the weekend bares.  There will either be Aliso Beach surf that works for different types of wave riders or there won’t.  I know there will be a lot of people checking it out hoping that conditions are fun.  They may or may not be.  Aliso Beach surf is predicted to be in the 4-6 foot range Sunday and Monday, and I, like everyone else, would love it if Aliso Beach was good enough to paddle out in good sized waves.  We will see!

You may check the Aliso Beach Surf Report at and you can view current conditions on the Aliso Beach Web Cam.  Enjoy the weekend of waves and be safe out there!

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Aliso Beach Surf Report

ALISO BEACH SURF REPORT

There are many more terms for Aliso Beach in South Laguna than I could have ever imagined.  Aliso, Aliso Beach, Aliso Beach Laguna, Aliso Beach South Laguna, Aliso Creek, Aliso Beach Park, Aliso Creek Beach, Aliso Creek Beach South Laguna and others are used to identify the same place.  My preference is Aliso Beach but these are the ways surf reports and beach goers talk about this amazing South Laguna Beach.  This one beach with many names has experienced a drought for waves and after this week per Solspot, we could go into an extended funk and lack of waves if something doesn’t rescue us in the tropical Northern Hemisphere spots that express deliver waves with hurricanes.

It seems as though there hasn’t been enough swell to awaken Aliso Beach in over a month.  Unlike Salt Creek, Aliso is not as receptive to smaller swells and waves driven by localized winds over the outer waters.  Realistically, Aliso Beach needs to be a solid 4 foot plus or greater to really do much of anything at all and it takes much lower tides to deliver any sort of wave quality.  Often times when Aliso Creek is let out by local youth, less than desirable conditions get a boost from newly formed sand bars.  The problem is that while we have had lots of smaller swells, Aliso Beach hasn’t been particularly responsive to the energy.

Aliso Beach, Aliso Creek Beach, Aliso Creek Beach South Laguna

Below Sea Level Photo Credit: Scotty Carter

This week we have influx of swells out of the south, southwest with wind swell mixing in.  It doesn’t seem to be enough to awake Aliso Beach from its summer slumber but who knows.  I will be giving it a look.  To make matters worse, the coast is under drizzling and misting weather that is putting a little unwanted texture on the water and waves with winds out of the southwest.  This will coincide with predicted wave heights 3-4 occasional 5 foot waves throughout the week with a boost Wednesday and Friday with an effect that is to be determined.  After the weekend it appears the Southern Hemisphere and tropics will care even less and go back to napping so whatever Aliso Beach gets this week may be it for a couple of weeks short of some small, dribbling waves out of the south as storms continue to buckle under the might of high pressure and blocked by the swell muffling tendencies of South Pacific Islands.

What we do know is that summer is far from over and that Aliso Beach will have its days.  Until nature assists though, Aliso Beach will have surf that is small and uninspiring.  It seems rather strange with the early hurricanes last week of May and into June and an El Nino condition confirmed by most scientists and meteorological talking heads as forming in 2015.  Of course, no one can perfectly predict the effects of this warm water event and counter to the expected warm water along our coast, local ocean temperatures have not reached bath water just yet.  We will get waves and Aliso Beach will benefit from those swells.  How long it will take is anyone’s guess but my expectation is that before long, El Nino will have its say in the quality and strength of swells hitting Aliso Beach through the end of summer and into fall.  For now, here is your surf report and forecast from Solspot for Aliso Creek Beach South Laguna!

 

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Aliso Beach Before And After Marie

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ALISO BEACH BEFORE AND AFTER MARIE

I would like to personally thank Professional Photographer Kirk Keiser for the photographs used in this piece. Photographs used for this story are the sole copyright of Kirk Keiser.  Thank you Kirk for the shots!  From Kirk’s lens, we are able to see the dramatic changes to Aliso Beach and Aliso Beach before and after Marie.

If you are fan of Aliso Beach and have a visual in your mind as to what Aliso Beach looks like, you may be shocked at the devastation to the beach post Hurricane Marie.  The erosion at Aliso is unbelievable and with another large swell from New Zealand coming and Hurricane Norbert sending waves on its heels with significant tropical swell, Aliso Beach needs a break.  The small gallery below is Aliso Beach the day before the arrival of waves from Hurricane Marie.  The gallery below is to give you a frame of reference as to how the beach was before the large waves and how it is after the large waves.  You might be surprised at the beating Aliso Beach took.

 

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WARNING:  The gallery you are about to view maybe upsetting.  Viewer discretion is advised.

Quite frankly, Aliso Beach is tore up and it is about to get another dose of back to back Southwest and Southeast Swells with higher tides that will do nothing for the recovery of Aliso Beach.  The Aliso Beach you knew is gone and it remains to be seen as to how long it will take to put herself back together….if even possible.  Mother Nature is a powerful, powerful force, and Hurricane Marie reminds us of this fact!

 

 

Some of the most notable damage from Hurricane Marie includes the loss of sand, exposure of rocks used to build the beach up, the reappearance of old round fire rings buried in sand long ago, the loss of one of the current square fire rings to the waves and the exposure of old jagged pier pilings with rebar wire sticking out from them.  It makes you wonder how and when Aliso Beach will return to normal.  Nature has a mysterious way of moving sand back and it is possible that despite the huge differences between Aliso Beach before and after Marie, it would not be unheard of to see a natural restoration take place.  I for one, never bet against nature.  It might just take a little while longer than typical.

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