As a native east coaster from New York, enduring a long, flat summer here in Southern California made watching all of my friends and family back on Long Island score an all time September hurricane swell season all the more brutal. The only time I got back home to New York was at the tail end of the Hurricane Maria swell, for a wedding.

For a brief period of time, it looked like I was going to be able and time it just right and that I would be able to tell future generations about this legendary run of waves. Unfortunately, I made it home a day late and a dollar short and now my grandchildren can hear about the time I missed the tropical swell events of the century.

Pretty much a visual summery of the trip…smoke on the horizen, large ships passing by, barrels and broken down stairways to nowhere.

Needless to say, when the forecast for San Diego predicted Santa Ana winds along with a promising combo swell, I was committed to completely milking this entire run of waves. I teamed up with Joe Parrino, who was coming off a score of a visit back to his home break in Long Beach, New York, and, San Diego native, Jay Christenson. We chased barrels back and forth across the U.S. border from Baja Malibu, Mexico to Oceanside, California.

Not sure if it was all the time spent together traveling this week or the fact that, this was as close to a hollow Long Island barrel as I have seen out here. Either way we found our rythm and connected on the best sequence of the swell.

With the swell filling in all day Saturday, we decided on an early morning hop across the border to Baja, Mexico, in hopes of less crowded lineups and a bit more swell. I packed up all of my camera gear, we double checked our passports and tossed the boards into the bed of Joe’s truck and left for Mexico. Crossing the border is the easy part, getting to the beach without getting lost or pulled over is the tricky part. The boys spent hours surfing as I photographed and battled the current. Those who have scored heavy waves, tacos and cold beer know there is nothing like a successful surf trip south of the border.

Thanks jay for your wealth of knowledge on taco shops in Southern California and Baja.

(15/24) Beer tastes better after any epic session.. but $4 dollar six pacs and al pastor tacos in Baja are as good as it gets.

(14/24) ….any good taco spots around?

(5/24) It was 90 degrees before 9:30 am on this morning. Joe Parrino about to find some shade!

(2/24) Getting through the boarder hassle free and being greeted by empty barrels at first light is what its all about.

(7/24) Get to the boarder line and its just Churros, fresh fruit and reasonably priced NFL merch….The long line getting back on US soil never seems as bad when you score!

(4/24) Jay Christenson Drawing his ine on The first of many tube rides this session.

(16/24) on the last day of the swell we stayed local so we could get on it early. A big flag waving in the wind got us all stoked on the way here.. We pulled up to offshore winds and hollow barrels and were amped on making the right call.

Joe Parrino sequence…

Beautiful sunset on the last day of the swell. This will make you forget about missing a couple of hurricane swell back in New York real quick!