North LA Pulse: January 2014
The North LA Pulse is a monthly feature highlighting the top performers of each swell as seen through lens of Justin Mehren
This month’s Pulse looks back at the last weeks of December and the first half of January. North LA was treated to a consistent run of three to four foot swells. The weather fluctuated, but it was the sunny and warm days that dominated. I found myself in the water shooting more than on land. The “Pulse of the Month” came on a pristine afternoon with an increasing west swell in the water. Noah Erickson came down the line on a perfect wedge and launched into a fully inverted air. When he landed, you could here the cliff yelling.
Pulse One, a west swell and a steep north wind swell combined to bring fun waves to the winter standouts in North LA. On the first day of the swell Erickson nailed the “Pulse of the Month”. The second day of the swell brought a slight increase in size, and it was Sean Johnson and SJ Murphy who were out ripping. The swell was very consistent, and Johnson was lying down some stylish open face carves and frothing as usual. That evening it was the grom, Murphy, teeing off on the inside grinders and taking to the air that impressed the cliff the most.
Pulse Two was a rare late season combo swell from the north and south, which created crossed up peaks at the beach breaks. The swells were greeted the first day with strong onshore winds and the surf was unrideable, but the following morning the wind died and a pack of locals got on it early. The standout this morning was Strider Wasilewski, showing his power while hacking away at the poor waves. Later that evening as the tide began to come back in, a couple groms paddled out before the sun went down. It was Sean Woods that picked off the best wave and set up perfectly for a tail high reverse.
Pulse Three filled in right as school started back up for the groms, after the extended holiday break. The swell was highlighted by a mid-day session with only a few surfers out in chest high and oil glass conditions. Dave White, a long time local, was showing his knowledge of the break by setting up perfectly for vertical top turns all the way down the line. The standout of this session was Fred Vilella, who was showing his power game on the outside and then busting the fins out on the inside section. DZ