The DO’s and DONT’s of Surfing After a Rain
Winter in California can bring some swell but also some rain. There are many different opinions about whether or not it is okay to surf during a rain and after a rain. Some surfers believe you’re fine if you say aay from drainpipes and inlets and others say to wait a few days. Well we are here to debunk those myths and tell you everything you need to know.
The main issue on the California coasts is crazy rain storm that hits after months of not even a sprinkle. That crazy rain storm brings all the trash and debris that has accumulated over the summer months and pushes it right out into the ocean. Whether it is already near the beach, coming from the sewers or coming in from a rivermouth it is very common. This can create a serious health risk for all surfers. The rule of thumb initially stated by the government is to stay out of the water for 72 hours after the rainfall has ceased. Something that undeniably comes into play is where you live. Levels of pollution vary among city and some places are definitely safer than others. For example, here in San Diego, being so close to Tijuana doesn’t pose the greatest feeling of cleanliness. There have been a few reports of pollution dumping that raised warnings for surfers in San Diego. So be aware of what’s on the news. Also be aware of the flags that the lifeguards put out. The lifeguards are always aware of what beach goers need to be aware of and what cautions are necessary to know. In reality, choosing to get in the polluted water and maybe getting is a chance you either are willing to take or you’re not. Nobody can say you will 100% come out of the water with a disease or infection and nobody can say you won’t. But so you’re aware… A few of the things you could get are ear infections, sinus infections, pink eye, the flu,gastroenteritis, MRSA, Hepatitis, and Staph. Some of these could be minor and others could actually put you in the hospital. It would be smart for those who shave to not enter the water directly after shaving or those who have any open cuts. That just makes it easier for the bacteria to enter your body.
All of this being said, I know some of you are still going to want to surf the solid swells that a storm brings, so here are a few tips if you do. Taking a hot shower with soap to wash your body, doing a nasal rinse (or two), really thoroughly cleaning your wetsuit, and even doubling up on the Emergen-C and vitamin C intake can all help.