Author Archive for chris.ahrens

Give a wave, and get one for a peaceful lineup

My first surfboard was a 9 foot 6 inch Wardy that I bought used for $45 in 1961. Seven years later I would strip the glass from that and all the other long boards stacked in my parent’s garage to make for short boards. They called it the “Short board Revolution,” and like most revolutions, […]

Health gurus help keep surfers riding the waves

Rob Machado told me a while back that he could tell when the local waters were affected by red tide, even without looking at the ocean. He, like many of us, including me, is allergic to the phytoplankton bloom commonly called Red Tide and scientifically known as Harmful Algal Blooms. The blooms are toxic and […]

Surf family opens new surf shop

In 1974, the winter waves were small and inconsistent. As happens during such times, the crowds suffocated every ripple that came through. Longboards were making a modest comeback and I bought a Bing Donald Takayama Model for $10 that I rode until it finally died from sun exposure. Longboards were too long and short boards […]

The power of life and death

Dr. Udo Wahn is an Ob-Gyn doctor that lives in Del Mar. He is also a surfer that loves the ocean and works to pass that love on to his son Paolo “Cabo” and any other kids that read one or more of his “Cabo and Coral” series. Written by Dr. Wahn and illustrated by […]

Public art in aquatic places

Last weekend I took a stroll through Ducky Waddles, that cool little art nook in Leucadia on Coast Highway near Lou’s Records. There, I found a million inexpensive pieces for sale, walking away with only one, a unique vase by a local artist that covered the smudge on my wall and the minor ding I […]

Teaching kids to surf all about timing

For reasons only they know, parents are putting their kids on surfboards at younger and younger ages. Some even wear kid-carrying devices, paddling junior out with them at around 2 years old. Tosh Tudor, Joel and Maya’s firstborn, rode some well-overheard (for him) waves before his 3rd birthday. The waves were mushy little outside high […]

My favorite surfer is based on more than just water skills

I had been surfing for two years, but being locked inland I was still a kook when my sister, Jackie, brought home “Surfer’s Choice,” the 1962 hit album by Dick Dale and His Deltones. Then she cranked up the hit song “Miserlou” good and loud as my musical tastes got switched on. From then on, […]

On Safari to Burn

In 1989, longboarding had competed its loop from nearly dead art form of the ‘70s and ‘80s to a full-blown revival with ‘60s stars like David Nuuhiwa, Nat Yong, Dale Dobson, Herbie Fletcher, Donald Takayama and Skip Frye back dominating the lineup. There was some new blood out there also, much of it following the […]

Chistmas thoughts for surfers

I wish I wouldn’t have deleted that last e-mail. It came from a concerned citizen touting the relative merits of living Christmas trees. The idea there is that a live, cut tree is far less damaging to the environment because so many trees are planted, they are not made of plastic and tree farms preserve […]

Small surf not necessarily something to look down on

I still remember wetting my pants (not literally) to see “The Endless Summer” at the Santa Monica Civic in the mid-1960s. Like every other surfer and even nonsurfers as far away as Omaha, Neb., where the film sold out in the middle of winter in 1966, I loved that film. It did something more than […]