Andino Leads a South County Charge in Santa Cruz

After 11 years of ups and downs, injuries and Olympic appearances, San Clemente’s Kolohe Andino found himself back on top of the podium earlier this month, when he won the O’Neill Cold Water Classic at Santa Cruz’s legendary Steamer Lane. On the women’s side of the draw, Florida’s Zoe Benedetto took the win after holding off a hard-charging group of girls from San Clemente, including15-year-old Bella Kenworthy who got the runner-up finish.

California Beaches Get High Marks

Jake Howard this week highlights some of the findings in Surfrider Foundation’s latest State of the Beach Report. While California was one of only 11 U.S. states or territories to receive an A or B grade, 50% of U.S. beaches, including some in Orange County, are under threat from coastal erosion.

A Different Kind of Film Festival

The Coast Film and Music Festival kicks off this week in Laguna Beach, Jake Howard reports. The festival, which launched in 2019, features a wide array of films about everything from surfing to mountain climbing and sustainability.

Board Riders Season Is Back

The 2022 West Coast Board Riders’ season kicks off this Saturday, Nov. 5, at Church at San Onofre, where the San Clemente Board Riders will host the event and start their national title defense after winning the U.S. Board Riders National Championship last season.

First in Foam

For a time, Gordon “Grubby” Clark oversaw what many described as a monopoly on the surfboard market, Jake Howard reports this week. Through savvy and often scrupulous business practices, Clark Foam was responsible for producing 90% of the surfboard blanks in the United States and 60% globally—that is, until he unexpectedly shuttered the Laguna Niguel-based business in December 2005.

No Sandbars Without Sand

For local surfers and beachgoers, the lack of sand from Beach Road to the bluffs of San Onofre is tragically and abundantly apparent, Jake Howard writes this week. The issue of coastal erosion in Capo Beach and San Clemente is a real one, with real-life consequences, he adds, noting that some of our most sacred surf spots are not just being threatened, they’re already under assault.

Patterson Honored at Boardroom Surfboard Show

Showing just how much surfboard shaping talent there is down here, the Boardroom Surfboard Show in Del Mar last week honored San Clemente icon Timmy Patterson, and in one of those incredible twists of fate, fellow San Clemente craftsman Rick Rock won the Icons of Foam shape-off.

Surfing’s Photographic Giant

Legendary surf photographer Art Brewer has a lot of stories to tell, some of which Jake Howard has had the privilege of hearing over the years. With Brewer, however, suffering from some health complications, Howard this week is highlighting some of those stories from Surfer magazine’s former photo editor.

Team USA Goes Gold

After a high-pressure, high-stakes week of surfing at the ISA World Surfing Games in Huntington Beach, San Clemente’s Kirra Pinkerton came out on top, winning the women’s gold medal and leading the American squad to their first team gold since 2009.

Lindblad Makes History at Super Girl Pro

After Stephanie Gilmore styled her way to a record-setting eighth world title just a couple weeks ago at the Rip Curl WSL Finals at Lower Trestles, history continued to be made in the water last week, as San Clemente’s Sawyer Lindblad turned in a tour de force at the Super Girl Pro in Oceanside, becoming the youngest competitor to win the event.

It’s Finals Time

The world’s top surfers have landed in San Clemente this week as they get set to compete in the Rip Curl WSL Finals at Lower Trestles sometime between Sept. 8-16. With the WSL’s top five men and top five women in town for the one-day, winner-take-all sprint for the 2022 world titles, it would appear, based on Surfline’s forecast, that Lowers could deliver some great surf for these competitors, including the top ranked Carissa Moore and San Clemente resident Filipe Toledo.

Want to Sell an Old Surfboard?

As a self-proclaimed surfboard hoarder still in the early stages of recovery, Jake Howard understands the hassle and heartbreak of parting ways with old boards collecting dust in the rafters of his garage. Fortunately for him this summer, USEDSURF in San Clemente came through, helping him offload some boards on the rack at home while putting a bit of cash in his pocket.

Rip Curl WSL Finals Lineup Locked In

With the 2022 WSL Championship Tour regular season wrapping up last week in Tahiti, it’s time to shift gears and get ready for the Rip Curl WSL Finals, Jake Howard reports. Defending world champ Carissa Moore and San Clemente resident Filipe Toledo, who has his sights set on capturing the first world title of his already accomplished career, come into this battle royal of a surf contest as the No. 1 seeds.