SANTA CRUZ (KPIX) — At famed coastside surf spot Mavericks on Wednesday, bigger was not necessarily better.
Surfline reported waves up to 25 feet but there was a catch: they were coming in from multiple directions, crisscrossing and jumbling the sea surface.
Surfer Douglas MacRae described the conditions to KPIX: “Basically, it’s just a little wishy-washy — like a washing machine. When it’s clean, the water will be moving in one direction as opposed to the three directions that it’s moving right now.”
MacRae said anybody going out in the water would get thrashed.
“You’d have to be pretty brave to be out there, that’s for sure,” he said.
Mary Triggs heard about the giant waves and came to see for herself. At age 73, she made the 1 1/2-mile round-trip hike simply because she could.
“Live your days as much as you can!” she exclaimed.
At Asilomar State Beach, another high-surf hotspot, waves reached 15 feet, slamming into the rocks and prompting park rangers to put up yellow chains to deter sightseers from getting too close.
Pretty much any beach facing west or northwest — like Bean Hollow near Pescadero — got a New Year pounding by the angry sea.
Nicholar Church and Maddie Martin were impressed.
“It seems kind of tumultuous but you can still get lost in the vastness of the ocean,” Church said.
“It puts you in perspective … sometimes you think, ‘it’s just me’ but these waves are big and they crash, and they remind you there’s more to the world,” Martin reflected.>
CAUGHT ON CAMERA: Monster Wave Washes Man Off Rocks Near Santa Cruz