Rocky coastline of northwest Oregon -- photo by David Young
Do you have the desire to be adventurous, but lack the skills to try new things? Do not worry, for you are not alone. I always enjoy trying new adventurous activities, even when my abilities are less than adequate. Do not let the unknown deter you from experiencing life.
My latest adventure was a feeble attempt to try surfing in the mighty Pacific. The coastline of Oregon offers spectacular views and great waves for both new and experienced surfers alike. Cannon Beach, a beautiful town along the northern coast of Oregon, was where I chose to test my nonexistent surfing skills. The first thing my friends and I had to do was rent gear.
Scenic view of Cannon Beach, Oregon -- photo by David Young
Cleanline Surf Shop in Seaside, OR, provided us with all of the necessary equipment. First, we rented longboards, as this particular surfboard is supposedly easier for beginners to learn on. We then rented full body wet suits because even in June the waters of the north Pacific are bone chillingly cold. Cleanline Surf Shop also offered lessons which we refused due to lack of time and honestly, a little pride. We just wanted to go out and surf; it seemed easy enough in the movies. My recommendation is to set aside time and take the surfing lessons. Learning the proper techniques will greatly aid in your success and experience.
Nevertheless, with images from the movie Point Break flowing through our minds, we strapped the boards to our rental vehicle and set out for the beach. We drove to a cove near Cannon Beach recommended for new surfers. After I put on the wet suit, which covered every part of my body except my hands and head, I ran for the beach and dove right in. The shock of the cold water sent shivers down my spine, but the excitement of it all kept me paddling out to the break. I sat on the board for a while watching the other surfers ride waves all the way to the beach. I decided it looked easy enough and began to paddle when the next wave came. As soon as I thought the wave was right I stood up only to come instantly crashing down with all the force of the ocean in a great wave of humility. After swallowing half the ocean, I took a break on the beach and eventually abandoned my pride to ask advice from one of the surfers I had been watching gracefully glide across the water as though they were one.
Me after conquering my first wave -- photo by David Young
He told me to wait for a good wave and paddle until I was on the crest of the wave, then pop up to a standing position very quickly. I set out again with his advice in mind, but continued to become one with the ocean floor. After an exhausting amount of time I jumped up and to my amazement I was standing on the surf board. I had defeated the mighty ocean and reveled in my achievement as I rode the wave to the beach. It was the most accomplished I had ever felt. I strode up the beach as if I had been surfing for years.
Surfing is a great experience everyone should try at least once in their life. Research the area you plan on surfing ahead of time to learn the best locations and which areas are good for beginners. Reading any information available will only increase your success. Before setting out to take on the ocean, a surfing lesson will help make the experience that much greater.
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