Updated: Jan 26, 2018
Summer season was over and so was summer jobs for us as surf instructors, most likely the first Slovakian surf instructors in California and Canada ever, we decided to go and get lost for a few weeks together. The mission was to explore Mexico first, drive around 2500 km from San Diego to Canada, surf every day, keep it low cost and have fun.
We met in San Diego where we left Matilda (the car) to rest for two weeks. My best friend drove with her friend all the way down from Vancouver Island and we took a flight from Tijuana to Mexico City. Arriving in the middle of the night we took the taxi to the bus station as the earliest transport to our destination - Puerto Escondido was at 7 a.m. The bus station seemed to us slightly sketchy, maybe because of local dudes hanging out and staring at us, looking too radical, it did not really feel welcoming. The journey to our first destination in La Punta took 15 hours through some dirt roads and unlit sketchy rocky passes in the mountains.
Our driver was fast and furious, speeding through turns in the road at 75 mph and seemed to be very skilled, which was a good thing since there wasn’t a seat belt in sight when I was sitting next to him. However, watching the Mexican wildlife occasionally running across the road made it feel like an adventure already.
When we finally arrived to La Punta, it was almost 2 a.m and we hoped for some hostel to be opened to get a place to stay. Of course, there was no one nowhere at that time, but the only place was a fenced space with few palm trees inside, mattresses on the floor or hanging from some kind of a roof, which was apparently hostel right on the beach. Thinking we are about to wake up and look straight at the waves, that place was perfect. The householder let us stay there for 110 pesos that night. We spent 3 days in La Punta, surfed fun left, enjoyed fish tacos, few coconuts a day and a jellyfish hug as well until we moved next door to Puerto Escondido.
It was not much swell those days so we decided to party a little bit. One night, when all the bars closed we decided with one Australian travel junkie we met and surfed with, to take a speaker and a few appetizers to the beach. We turned it up, danced and had a lot of fun, until we saw a dark silhouette walking towards us. At first we thought it is some drunk tourist that decided to go for an early 3 A.M swim, but after coming straight to us, looking sideways if anyone is watching and hiding some kind of a weapon under his shirt, we assumed he is not. He came to us and said in Spanish to give us the speaker,
phones and whatever we had. Me and my Ozzie friend looked at each other and froze for a few seconds before I turned to our Mexican not-so-amigo with a big smile. I told him I do not understand but he looks really friendly, that I love Mexico, tacos, coco and tequila, asked him where is the party at, acted like he just became the best friend of mine. He confusedly told us there is none tonight but tomorrow. I guess I managed to build up a personal relationship with potential thief and disturbed his fantasies by reacting quick, being super friendly, inviting him to join the party next day and even giving him a hug, he got super confused and so we just left. Of course, the main gate to our hotel was locked so we had to climb over the wall. When I was on top of it I saw him in the distance hiding in a bush making a call and explaining something, looking confused and upset at the same time. We disappeared as quick as possible, thinking it is probably not the best idea to go for an after party to the beach at night in Mexico. Next day we met a local hero Margarito with his parrot Ruby sitting on his head, who took us on a boat trip. We were surrounded by long coast of mangroves with crocodiles underneath them, listening to Margarito’s vocals and flute performance and jumped out of the boat after sunset in the middle of a river mouth to swim through the glowing plankton.
We decided to go south and surf in spot called Chacahua, also known as a right-hander peeling forever. To get there was an adventure again, since we had to take the taxi to another taxi to take collectivo (another kind of a taxi, that collects as many people as the almost-falling-apart truck fits), to take a boat to another collectivo, to get to the spot. The local life there was really simple. We scored a penthouse room with a hammock on the balcony. The room itself consisted of a concrete floor, walls and a bamboo roof, 3 beds and a bathroom in the corner with no door but lovely short pink curtain instead that did not even reach the floor level and if anyone sitting on a toilet, the curtain was basically useless. The windows were made out of the bamboo sticks, which all the Mexican mosquito easily got through at night to take good care of us. The night seemed to be extremely long and however hard I tried, I could not fall asleep due to this itchy sweaty hell. I decided to take a cold shower and cool down, but coming face to face with a giant cockroach in the bathroom did not make things easier. After the weekend in Chacahua we were glad to leave and go back to Puerto Escondido which rewarded us with a new swell and fun sessions before we took off.
After midnight waiting at the Tijuana border, surrounded by strange personalities we finally got picked up by a friend, had some sleep and were ready to leave. We hit the route number 1, stopped in Oceanside for sunset session and slept in our car in San Clemente. Next day we headed to Long Beach where there was a huge festival going on. We did not really go there because of the party or the massive lineup, we decided to meet our friend Skrillex from 2 years ago, when we happen to snowboard with him in the Austrian Alps, where we had fresh powder and were able to shred the snow park for a week. We managed to catch up, got big hugs and were introduced to all his friends as the snowboard girls he had one of the best time of his life with. That was insane. After his show we left all together for an after party to his house in LA, skateboarded through the city streets next day, enjoyed the lunch together and said bye until the next time. We headed up to Venice where Matilda’s coolant boiled completely off in the middle of the traffic and we realized maybe someone should have a serious look at it, considering we were still about to drive more than 2000 km. Because of our low budget, we were recommended to drive from LA back to Long Beach and to see Omar, known as a „car doctor“. Omar was classic, wearing a nice shirt with sleeves rolled up, smoking above the open hood of our car looking confident like there is no time frame. He fixed what was needed and what not as well and we continued to Santa Barbara. We liked the place a lot so we stayed for few days, surfed one of the best spots in California – Rincon, hung out with locals, barbecued every day, did not care what time or day it is and watched sunsets beyond peeling and never ending right handers. Since our car was a minivan with 2 seats in front and a mattress behind, our home was where we parked it, either it was by the bush, railway station or under a huge palm tree.
After 4 days in Rincon we went to Santa Cruz, where we started to notice what they mean by cold feet surfing. Next day we surfed in Ocean Beach in San Francisco and camped in Eureka. Because we decided not to pay for camping, we parked right in front of one. Maybe it was karma, maybe not, next day we got a fat ticket for parking in a national state park, while we were checking how the surf is like within 7 minutes. After a failed attempt to explain to the local sheriff as to why we did not pay at the front desk when there was no one to accept our payment, we almost got another for driving inside the state park at 20 mph instead of 15. Eventually we were asked to leave. We hug some of the world biggest trees on our way through the Redwoods, drove through Oregon and Washington and made it to our final destination; bustling west coast seaport of Vancouver. Considering what to do before I took off to Europe the next day and getting frustrated by big city life, I decided to miss my flight and we went to surf to Vancouver Island for few more days. Pure nature, wild life and that energy between the waves and the exposure of the mountains behind, was true beauty. Offshore winds, brain freezing surf, empty line up and sharing the waves with my best friend was like a cherry on top of a cake and made the whole trip from Mexico to Canada one of those of a lifetime for sure.