Surfing (8)

Surfing During Paleolithic Times

…Wanna see our pictures on the cover
Wanna buy five copies for our mothers
Wanna see my smilin’ face
On the cover of the Rollin’ Stone

People of a certain, um, age will remember the song from the early ’70s by Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show.

Well, I finally made it on a cover, 61 (ulp!) years later in the just-out copy of The Surfer’s Journal. I was wearing a shorty wetsuit from the Dive ’N Surf shop in La Jolla (pre-O’Neill). You sent them your measurements and they sent you the cut-out pieces and a bottle of Black Magic glue and some tape. You’d glue together pieces, glue tape over seams. Early wetsuits didn’t have nylon lining, so you’d rub cornstarch on your body so as to be able to slip the suit on. Underneath it I was wearing on old-fashioned wool bathing suit. A 9-foot Velzy balsa wood board. (This was just before foam.)

This was about a 6-to-8-foot drop to the water (at Steamer Lane), there was a ledge, and we did this when the tide was right in order to stay dry. We’d wait for a wave to hit the cliff, then jump as the backwash flowed outward.

Before wetsuits there wasn’t much of a crowd problem. I remember a foggy morning, 6 to 8 feet at the Lane, four of us out. Ah, me.

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Visit from Cyrus Sutton and Anna Ehrgott


Cyrus Sutton and his girlfriend Anna Ehrgott dropped by the Shelter office last week. Cyrus is a surfer, director, photographer, and all-around amazing person. His girlfriend Anna Ehrgott is just as an amazing person as Cyrus: a great surfer, she started her own surfboard bag company, Sagebrush Bags (made with recycled coffee bean sacks), and is an amazing photographer.

I met Cyrus the other year when we were working on Tiny Homes on the Move; he had just built a van for a trip down the West Coast in search for surf (featured in the film Compassing, below). He just sold the van recently to the owner of one of the local surf shops and happened to be in town for a week. Cyrus recently got the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter van and has plans to do some conversions soon.
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Millionaire Pro Baseball Player Lives Out of a VW Van


After receiving a $2 million signing bonus with the Toronto Blue Jays, Daniel Norris decided to hit the road with his new dream car — a 1978 Westfalia camper VW van — which incidentally, is also his new dream home.

21-year-old Norris signed with the Blue Jays right out of high school in 2011. Upon signing to a new team, professional athletes are typically awarded huge sums of money to incentivize their hard work and integration into the team. At this point, most athletes are inclined to indulge their fantasies coming to life, opting for a mega-home with sports cars, marble floors, and hired help. Evidently, Norris isn’t easily aroused by the materialism of “high status” life, and despite being one of the only 21-year-olds on the planet able to afford a Rolls-Royce, Norris is completely content living out of his VW van, traveling around the coast in search of good surf, epic hiking spots, and rock walls. His VW van, called Shaggy, is equipped with a bed and kitchenette, which Norris uses to make simple meals over a stovetop.

More story and photos at…

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ANIÁN Surf Shop in Victoria, BC

Annian surf shop


I did a tour for Tiny Homes on the Move a few months ago in British Columbia. On my way into Victoria, I noticed a little complex of buildings constructed out of used materials. I stopped in and met the owners. Everything was perfect. A tiny village in a kind of industrial area, built out of scrap, clothing manufactured in Canada (I bought 3 beautiful wool T-shirts), surfboards, an outdoor stage. I asked Paul and Nick to send us a writeup of what they are doing:

What started as a trip to the beach has grown from infatuation into obsession. Created in 2013, ANIÁN represents travel, adventure and nomadic culture. ANIÁN products showcase the beauty within simplicity and the importance of quality. ANIÁN clothing is made in Canada to ensure a quality product and fair wages for those who make it.

Nick and Paul, the two owners of ANIÁN (named after a mythical channel between Asia and the Americas) have transformed a rundown lot used for storing dumpsters in Victoria, B.C., into Canada’s first 100% solar, off-the-grid store. The store is best described as a cabin in the woods in the city. It is complete with a lawn, junipers and a small outdoor stage where local artists come to play all powered by four 250-watt panels, one 80-amp charge controller and eight 210 amp-hour, 12-volt batteries. By showing people that going 100% solar in a downtown location is possible they hope to inspire others to follow their lead.

ANIÁN is comprised of an outdoor stage, showroom/retail store, an interactive work shop, and a shipping container where finished goods are stored. 95% of everything is either made or covered in reclaimed material.

Most of the materials came from an old blimp hanger in the Comox valley (central Vancouver Island) where some of the material was pieces of Douglas fir up to 40 feet long.

The interactive workshop is built entirely out of the Douglas fir. The tongue-and-groove pieces ruggedly fit together, giving it a wonderfully rustic feel. The floor of the showroom is one laminated beam cut in half and then bookmarked into four amazingly golden white 3½-inch-thick ten-foot-long boards. All of the patio and boardwalk decking is made of four-inch wide Douglas fir tongue-and-groove. Slightly thinner planking; 2½-inch tongue-and-groove was used for the stage. The shipping container is faced with cedar shakes to help it seamlessly slip into this downtown escape.

Along with showcasing ANIÁN and providing Paul and Nick a place to display their coastally nomadic clothing the location has proven to be a great as a destination for outdoor musical festivals and charity fundraisers.

Next time you find yourself in Victoria, stop by 516 Discovery Street.

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Wooden Teardrop Trailers and Surfboards Built in France


“Born in the heart of the Basque country, UhainaPo is to Classic Surfboard Spirit what a Stradivarius is in the world of violin. Surfboards, paddles, longboard, bodyboard, Hawaiian canoes UhainaPo offers the intact pleasure of a real authentic surf.

Manufactured with the same requirements as UhainaPo products, TearDrops Uhainapo Travel will allow you to travel in comfort and respect for nature.”

www.uhainapo.com3 www.uhainapo.com1

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Drew's Veggie-Powered 4×4 Mitsubishi Delica Van

Diesel 4x4 Surf Van

Drew and Justin

I have been seeing this van around for a few weeks and trying to catch up with the driver. I love these vans and wish California/U.S. Customs would relax some of their crazy import laws and allow some of these in. I finally found them in Bolinas today! This is Drew De Panacis and his friend Justin Artuso. They are on a surfing/rock climbing road trip from Vancouver, Canada and went as far south as Big Sur for surf and out to the sierras for rock climbing. They are slowly making their way back up to the great north and hitting as much good surf as they can along the way. The van is a 4×4 diesel and it has a veggie conversion kit on it and holds 35 gallons of oil. To get something like this in America, you’d really only have one option — a Sportsmobile — which start out in the $30-$40k range for a used one. These Delicas go from $5-$10K in Canada which makes them a lot more affordable to younger folks and people who don’t make a ton of money.


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