Aug 31, 2011

Cottons - Like we did last summer

Stolen from Pranaglider's blog (23 Breaths):

So with a good 200 degree swell in the water we are heading to Cottons on Sunday for another mat meet.

Be there early, you'll miss some traffic.

Parking is the same as Trestles, you walk down the same path just turn right instead of left when you get to the beach. You can't miss it.

The forecast calls for decent surf so it should be fun. Low tide is at 8:07 am at 2.7 feet which will be good.

If you have questions leave them in the comments section.

Aug 25, 2011

Tom and Surfsis Mat L.A.

A study in inflation levels

"Look, ma! No hands!"

Hanging tough in the washing machine conditions

Tom finds a shoulder!

"Yeeeeee haaaaaaaaaw!"

Two mat nerds resting up before making another assault on the waves

Tom and I hadn't met before today, but we did exchange emails in anticipation of his short stay in L.A. We were able to share a session at a local beach break. The conditions left much to be desired. Nevertheless, we were out there getting some. At one point, a guy on an SUP commented to me that he saw us "getting [our] wiggle on"!

I had fun. Tom did too. In fact, he went back for a second session later in the day. (I was home making the kid do summer homework.)

Go get some tomorrow, Tom!! And have a safe, uneventful flight back!

All photos by Ken Samuels

Aug 19, 2011

Three 4GFs on One Wave = A Lot of Laughing

Tremor and I decided today would be a good day to hit up the location of the last L.A. mat meet. The waves seemed a bit weak and pointless on first glance. We still kicked/paddled out nonetheless. Tremor wanted to try out his new UDT. I just wanted to ride my mat. And a funny thing happened while I was assuming the session would be mediocre.

The waves got kind of good! Then, I spied someone onshore with . . . what's this? . . a mat!! Marvin!!

And then there were three.

We proceeded to crack up both ourselves and the surfers. The crowd was mellow and nice. That doesn't mean, of course, they were nice enough not to drop in on us or not snake our waves. I've noticed that people think surf etiquette doesn't apply to those of us on mats. Nonetheless, we had more fun than I could ever begin to describe.

One of my highlights was when Tremor gave his mat to a girl on a surfboard. Although she didn't have fins, she still managed to catch a wave. I could hear her screaming and giggling as she found a wave that hurtled her toward the shore.

I'm tempted to say that this was the most fun I've had on a mat. It wasn't. It was, however, the most I've laughed since . . . last Sunday's Orange County mat meet.

- Seeing Tremor find trim on a mat that's more suited to his size
- Seeing Tremor trying to steer a round tail mat that's more suited to his size
- Hearing Marvin laughing hysterically as a wave picked him up and took him away
- Getting a thumbs up from the official mat photographer after I got a nice wave
- Laughing and laughing and laughing until my stomach hurt

Pray for surf!

Photos by Ken Samuels

Aug 14, 2011

Aug 13, 2011

Another POV Ride

Wategos at Cape Byron

Aug 12, 2011

Odds and Ends...

I'm heading up to Oregon for a week on family business, so I thought I'd download all the stuff that's going on in the 4GF world in one big lump!


The 4GF Sale is still going strong. Details are spelled out here...

Dead Solid Perfect...

Wandering off the sacred topic of mat riding, Pranaglider nails it with regard to the recently completed "U.S. Open Pro Board Riding, Rioting, and Shameless Sexism Championship," or whatever they call it now...

Spotted by Steiny...

More Dreaded 4GF Testimonials...

Hi Paul,

Just a quick note to say that we've had a few days of decent swell here in the last week so i've finally had a chance to get out with the Vespa. It took a while to get used to as it felt huge compared to the fatty, but i'm loving it now.

Viva la mat! - Neil


Hi Paul,

I received the 4GF T-shirt a couple of days ago. Very quick too, thank you.

I had an awesome June/July on the Atlantic coast of France. for over 2 weeks in June the surf was outstanding especially at Capbreton, & this is my favorite spot a very consistent left off the jetty, holds up even with onshore winds & a right from the other side of the beach, smaller but still fast. (photo attached)

Most days it was early morning glass & late afternoon juice when the sea breeze kicked in. The "Standard" was perfect. I was getting longer rides then either the board riders or the bodyboard crew. I had arms & legs like noodles at the end of the day. It was "surf, eat, sleep, repeat" for 16 consecutive days, with wave sizes from shoulder high to near double overhead. Tired but stoked every day :))

I got lots of very strange looks & comments & a few laughs, but that usually changed when folk saw how fast these mats go & how they track. Only once as I was walking up the beach at the end of an early morning session a long boarder, commented "Ah just like George Greenough!" I nodded & said "That's right, your the first one in 5 weeks who knows!"

What struck me too was how little fun most of the short boarders & a good proportion for the body-boarders were having. But then I am 63 with nothing to prove & grateful to still be able to do this. I have been back in the water these last 3 years after what must be a 30 year break, its taken some training, but this year I surfed the biggest & best I can remember. I find the mats perfect for me, though I still sometimes use a kneeboard, that feels stiff & unresponsive in comparison. I remember a quote from the "short board revolution" in the early 70's "reduce the medium" mats are the ultimate reduction of the medium between rider & wave! Thanks for a couple of amazing surf craft. I'm going back at the end of August for another go :))

Peter M.


Hi Paul,

We went matting twice this weekend, and even though it was pretty cold, my daughter had a ton of fun plowing around in the whitewash. Given the smiles I saw after each ride, I think this will be a gateway to paddling outside and getting some clean faces before the Summer is out.

I tried to get some pics to send with my cell phone, but they didn't really come out too well. Hopefully I can talk my wide into bringing the real camera one day soon so we can send something in for your website...

All the best,   Peter O.


Hello Paul

Thank you for sending out the commodity.

I looks forward to the arrival.

I want to try early because of the wave of Japan.

I'm exciting since now. I report for you.



Hi Paul,

Here's a brief update on my first mat-experience...

First surf was in June in Dubai !! Freaking hot and 32 degr. C water !!
Waves were mushy shoulder high. I had a blast and felt a lot less
silly than the regular guys in the line-up.

The mat feels really good. I like the grip the top layer gives.

This summer I had some more sessions in France. It was fun so I'm stoked !!
Finally noticed the scrible in the fold. Cool !

I think you make a nice product Paul, thanks !



HELL YEAH!! My first surfmat! Thanks to Surfsister!



Latest From Down Under...

Boyd sent a CD with some recent, super-fun mat riding action from his neck of the woods. Riders are Boyd, George and Dave. Photogs are Max and Wardie.

See all you guys when I get back!!!


Aug 11, 2011

Minute Ride

Here's a POV vid from the other day at The Pass in Byron Bay, Australia.
The surf was 2' and fairly fun. This minute wave provided a minute long ride.


Reply from Ian ...

"Just a bystander's view of Matmax's minute ride in Byron..."

Aug 7, 2011

The Most Excellent Adventures of TT and SS

There isn't enough room on this blog to detail all we went through to, first, get to this break and, even more importantly, attempt our escape once the tide came up, trapping us (TT, photographer Ken and I) on what little sand was left. The car was north, but the safest route to land appeared to be south. As we often learn in this life, appearances are often deceiving.

Perhaps the rich and famous will hear of our plight, of our decision to split up, hoping upon hope that one of us would eventually reach the car while the other two fought their way to higher ground. In the end, all three of our intrepid adventurers made it back to civilization safely (with three mats, two sets of fins, two surfboards, one board bag, one backpack and loads of camera equipment—all of which ended up wet). Perhaps those rich and famous folks will decide to option our story, thus somehow rewarding us for our fortitude, for our decision to invade their seemingly private break with our mats, boards and photographer.

Rich people who think you can keep the beach to yourselves, I hope you're reading this. We will be back. You don't own the beach. I know you'd like to believe your money gives you exclusive rights to it. That is distressing on so many levels. You do not see the error of your ways.

I will not out your break in public. That is not my way. However, I will warn you not to delude yourselves into thinking those waves belong to you and to you alone.

That's me trying not to run over TT

TT relaxing and waiting for waves

Going right!!

There were no lefts to speak of

We will be back to mat your waves. We will surf them too. We will not bring a crowd. We will not call a mat meet. But we will be there again. You might as well get used to seeing the faces in this post. You will see them again.

Photos by Ken Samuels

Aug 4, 2011

From Mark S.

Hi Paul,

Just want you to know that I picked up the mats from Craig and they are with me here in Bulgaria. Some of the kids have already had the opportunity to use them and I will pass some pics along for you. We will be at the seaside with all of the kids the last 2 weeks in August. Craig and Cathy will join me then.

Just know this; you have helped put smiles on a lot of the faces of the disenfranchised children from the home in Roman, Bulgaria. ;)

With the warmest regards,


Aug 3, 2011

Ready to Ride

Ryan models a classic Neu at Pleasure Point, Santa Cruz.