A solid swell from the south rifled into Puerto Escondido over the past few days – and when these sorts of numbers start showing up on the charts, you can count on a familiar and dedicated cast to make the trip for some Mexican spice.
This is Mexico's premier beachbreak, capable of serving up the prime beef of XXL sessions. The paddle out can be savage and the hold-downs and beatings are some of the most brutal. But when your protagonists are; Greg Long, Trevor Carlson, Will and Cliff Skudin, Ken Collins, Jojo Roper plus that strong contingent of local rippers, something special ends up playing out.
We checked in with New York's big wave maestro Will Skudin who told MSW: ''It was a fun swell with real solid energy and direction. The winds had some trouble coming together perfectly, but there were some moments of perfection.
''The best part was the overall vibe, such an epic crew of locals and visitors. I think everyone was just stoked to feel that kind of energy again. Got the blood moving.''
Othmane Choufani's a name you should know. The Moroccan charger travels the globe, putting in time at Jaws, Teahupoo, Mavs and has most recently been posted at Puerto Escondido for the past month. ''The last swell was really fun,'' he tells MSW. ''It just started to go offshore in the morning so everyone was pretty amped and a lot of the guys were there. The waves weren't really big but some beautiful sets started to come trough around 9am. I was riding a 7'4'' quad.
''I love everything about Puerto, the food, the locals, my favourite types of wave are beachbreaks, sand bottom A-frames, it's just so sick. And I love big waves. This spot handle any size, it is definitely where I've got the best waves of my life and where I always want to be if a big swell hits.''
As usual, lensman Edwin Morales was capturing the goods from this run of swell on May 21-24: ''It was a shame the wind was never on point because swell direction was insane. You could still see peaks all over the beach. That's the beauty of a south swell coming from 180 -190 degrees. It just makes the waves so perfect for Playa Zicatela.
''Although the winds were not ideal, a great crew showed up for the swell including long time Puerto visitor Ken ''Skindog'' Collins who was pretty much sending it on every single wave and looking for the deepest barrels. Also guys like Nic Lamb, Trevor Carlson, Will and Cliff Skudin, Kurt Rist, Jojo Roper, Chris Mumford, the Long brothers and of course the Latin and local crew.
''The wind direction kind of allowed the sessions to extend a bit longer every day and even a couple evening sessions with weird and heavy conditions. I think it was a great time for the BWT guys to come and train a bit before the Puerto Challenge and get a good warm up session. Hopefully this year we get the comp running with a massive straight south swell.''