Want to know why Trestles is a skate park one day, a burger drive-through the next?
I’m not even going to try and shit you. I wrote this a year ago.
But the knowledge contained herein is timeless and, I maintain, even now, useful. It features, as most things I do about Trestles or even vaguely mainland America, the quotes of Matt “Mayhem” Biolos, a shaper who stole my heart a sixteen years ago with a round-nose fish I scooped out of the racks at Pukas in Spain.
Matt, as you might know, has been living in San Clemente and surfing Lowers since the eighties. Half the tour grabs a Mayhem pre-Hurley event.
And, with the finals maybe tomoz, or the day after, I figured, how about a little stroll down memory lane? It’s not as if the physics of the wave have changed.
BeachGrit: Who owns the lineup outside the contest?
Mayhem: As with any spot that is easy to surf, you have a crew of older, respected, average-ability guys that kinda rule the outside sets. Most the sets get ridden by average skilled surfers actually. Then there is the mid-pack and you have a revolving door of regular rippers there: Yeomans, the Gudangs, Ian Crane, Jer Carter, Jeff Lukasik. Theres an old guard of great surfers like Cordell Miller, Kenny Caldwell and Robo type guys. Kolohe is the best surfer every time he paddles out. He catches bombs, insiders and mid sets. He surfs it as good as anyone alive. Then on the inside you have the super groms. Griffin Colapinto is prob top dog right now. There’s too many of them to even list. It’s crazy how many good 11-to-15 year olds there are in town right now. After all that, you have Chris Ward. He is the one who really owns the line-up. He has special contact lenses that make everyone else in the line up disappear. I think he gave a set to his daughter as well.
BeachGrit: Describe the effect on the wave of the different swell and wind directions, this time of year? Sometimes it’s burger-y; sometimes it looks like the most appealing of skate parks.
Mayhem: A pure solid, long-lined south swell is best. Super sharp hurricane-angled south-easters are sectiony and closed out. The more west it gets, the mushier the right gets and the left gets shorter. Broken-up swells are not good. Too peaky, makes the waves soft and broken up. The wind is pretty mellow. The only truly bad wind is a south wind. It’s like the Devil Wind at J-Bay. Unless you have full-on storm condition, of course, then west and northwest wind is bad too. We actually like a little onshore ripple, it holds you in the wave. Offshores look pretty but they limit the variety of moves the good surfers can do on the waves.
BeachGrit: Why does Kelly win nearly ever year?
Mayhem: If he isn’t the best surfer at any given time, he makes up for it by being the best competitor.
BeachGrit: Brother’s been surfing the joint for a doz years. Is he ever likely to win?
Mayhem: Some day he will.
(And here are the quarter-finalists!)