Opening Day

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Earlier this month, Mavs started to grumble. A near-shore storm spun to life on October 4th and pulsed a few slopes through Half Moon Bay. It was a promising sign that the official opening day would come much earlier than it did last year. And this weekend, it did. On Saturday, a bigger swell drifted into the Mavs crosshairs and a slow yet proper Opening Day 2008 came to life. Here, Mavericks surfer and Stormsurf/Wavewatch forecaster Mark Sponsler explains what happened:

"Early in the morning, the buoys were coming in at 13-14 feet at 22 seconds, which should have made for 29-foot conditions, Hawaiian. So you can imagine the excitement surrounding this swell. But the fact that the storm was in a perfect position for shadowing from the Farallon Islands, was 2,400 plus miles away spinning on the dateline, and had a super small fetch, there was a lot of inconsistency and long waits. These factors made for good wave count when the sets arrived (attributed to virtual fetch), but a very low set density (attributed to limited fetch area).

All in all, the crew saw a sporadic run of 15-foot sets in the morning that delivered a few handfuls of memorable drops to those of us that had been patiently waiting through the lulls. And although those sets became fewer as the day progressed and we did more sitting than surfing, Mavericks had woken up for the winter and made its official arrival."