Mid September

Fun waves on the way for PR.

Thursday 9/20 6am WFL Surf Outlook WFL remains in light SE flow. No change to this broken record pattern. The EC has fun surf. Another swell is expected on the EC. Jeff Masters is calling it the Florence Zombie storm, pretty funny a piece of Florence energy gets stuck in the middle ATL this week. The EC looks fun, though I did not see the offshores that were there last week. I was in El Sal watching Slater and Lopez surf Ponce on Social Media, that was pretty cool… PR is expecting swell on Sunday and then all next week. Jetblue is about $360 MCO to BQN next week when I checked. No surfing tourism here right now and the locals got a lot of surf last week so looks really fun with favorable winds. My call is variations of chest to head high surf (bigger in Isabela) with light offshores here in Rincon winds look ESE and E trades at 10 maybe 15…

Small part of the Disaster Relief crew skating after a long day of work in Mayaguez.

PR 1 Year after Maria: Nothing but positive… The people who wanted to leave- left, and the people who are here want to be here. The infrastructure has improved. We had a rainy summer and the island is green and lush. You can’t really tell what it was like a year ago when it looked barren and desolate immediately after the storm. The best part was the Disaster Relief, we got to be a part, and meeting so many awesome people from the US was great. We worked shoulder to shoulder with them to rebuild. We definitely learned a lot and grew. My kids benefited so much. They surfed a lot with the new guys who came to work. Now they surf twice as good as they did a year ago and that means they enjoy surfing more and they learned to work, something I was struggling to teach them so- todo bien… PR, for better or worse, has a high profile now and I think this tourist season is going to be busy so the economy is improving, tons of work for those who want to work. Thanks again for all your help getting started again. You all played a big part in the recovery. Super big thanks!

El Salvador: Really good trip. I’ll post a brief write up soon…


20 YEARS AURASURF.COM-
1998-2018.

55 thoughts on “Mid September

  1. Fuggin

    I love the skatey feel of a twin. My fav board is my 6’6 single fin though. It just feels right. Heading to the EC for some small trade swell this evening and tomorrow, It looks small but fun by GC standards🤙

  2. Evy

    well, I went out to Turtle Beach yesterday — the water is FOUL — no other words to describe the smell, look and vibe. NASTY.
    I paddled the intracoastal which has some protection (backwater) from the red-tide. First word that came to mind was BacteriaSoup. With all the decomposition of life…in 90 degree water…it’s a petri-dish. Very bitter-sweet moments were spent with a group of Manatee and an infant manatee. For over 20 minutes the manatees swam around myself and some dear kiddie-friends….the children were memorized as the Manatees interacted with us. Gently rubbing their backs under our boards….. licking the sides of the paddle boards, playing with the board cord… fins touching the boards and deep gazes into our eyes as the came up….at any other time I would have been in heaven…. yet, all I could think of was … what is the infants chance of survival in this ecological disaster? Would the mother’s milk make the infant ill ? Their lungs…. how can they breath this 24/7…. I was getting affected, just being out there for a few hours. The Children, their Momma ( guests from France) and I took a few moments in prayer for these creatures….and for Our Lady Gulf of Mexico.

  3. Evy

    So…. I went back to Turtle beach yesterday morning to check on the Manatees ….as I paddled out to the spot I had last saw them the odor of Red Tide was making me nauseous – but what I witnessed next affected to the very core of my being…..a manatee had died and the pod was desperately trying to ” wake him/her up”. Watching the manatee try to revive their pod-mate will be one of the most heart wrenching sights my eyes will ever see. My heart is aching.

  4. Evy

    Re-posted from FB – When I checked out her links ( on The South Florida Clean Water Movement page) I was able to connect the dots – her theory has a great deal of credibility and it’s worth the time to read the links she provided.
    Curious what you all think –
    Rena Sue Marie‎
    to
    The South Florida Clean Water Movement
    4 hrs

    I have a theory that a cover up going on and that this algae crisis was an experiment with algae ocean fertilization gone wrong. They didn’t do enough research and it killed alot of mammals and fish and now we are all getting sick. If you connect the dots you will see The Department of Energy gave 15 million dollars to Lee County based Algenol who is starting to produce biofuel from cyanobacteria. They plan to do deep well injection to store the rest of the toxic cyanobacteria because Algenol probably doesn’t have room for it all. Why are we STORING this waste if not to use it for something? Why not get rid of it? The company digging the deep injection wells in Fort Myers is Youngquist brothers who are a oil and gas company. The algae that they are vacumning up for now is going to a water treatment facility and if my hunch is right its Algenol’s pilot facility. Could there be ANY other explanation was to why they are not fixing this problem? Lee County has their hands all over this as they gave them tons of money too! Lee County’s Economic Development Committee also allocated a $10m grant in 2010. The department of Energy gave them 15 milion to develop this technology. Maybe they haven’t fixed the problem because they don’t want to! Someone needs to follow that truck of algae vacumned up and see where it goes! Is this why the government sprays glysophate all over and around lake Okeechobee to make the problem worse?There’s so much more that I know than this but don’t feel like writing it all. I just cannot wrap my head around why they are allowing this to continue and I feel with all the media coverup there is more to this whole crisis than we can fully comprehend. Please do not make comments unless you researched this fully as I have. Never ONCE did I see anyone talk about this in any group. I’m looking for help to research this and hope I’m wrong.Links to the start of my research are below.

  5. m-dub

    Thank you for the updates. That is so incredibly sad can Mote Marine relocate that family of manatees to an area with cleaner water?

  6. Higgy Baby

    Starting to see small dead fish floating in the water off Treasure Island today, but still see a lot of other bait fish, snook, sheep head and other fish, I also had the pleasure of sharing a paddle with 3 manatees, hope we get a storm soon.

  7. Matthew M.

    Correlation does not equal causation. People stretch the truth in whatever direction they see fit. Why not get rid of it… You can’t just get rid of cyanobacteria. Cyanobacteria blooms happen in multiple lakes throughout the country not just Okeechobee. Do you not think if there was a solution that it wouldn’t be happening in multiple places. These blooms feed on nitrogen and phosphorus which comes from animal waste, human waste, mines, fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides and much more. Yes glyphosate and other herbicides can produce phosophonates that the algae can feed off of. The “government” sprays glyphosate (and other herbicides) all over because that is their only solution for weed and invasive plant control. There are petitions to stop the use of herbicides and glyphosate but thanks to money influence in politics that won’t happen. Not to mention the fact that there is no other viable solution to the invasive plant problem. Toxic cyanobacteria blooms we’re first discovered in Okeechobee back in 1987. This is not a new occurrence it’s just become more exacerbated. The amount of phosphorus fertilzer dumped into lake Okeechobee during the 80’s and 90’s is outrageous. In 1985 500 metric tons of phosphorus flowed into the lake. Today the amount of phosphorus that flows into the lake is still to high according to water quality standards. Studies have shown that if the pollution we’re to stop today there is still enough contamination in the sediment at the bottom of the lake to keep the blooms going for decades to come. There has been proposals for a decade now to send the water south back to the starving Everglades however the phosphorus levels are to high to send there. Not to mention the toxic cyanobacteria in the water that would also destroy the Everglades. Yet a company gets a subsidy to actually do something and it’s all of a sudden a conspiracy. We have phosphate mines all over the west coast, tons of agriculture land north of the lake…this is not a one problem one solution thing. This is an accumulation of multiple factors. Just look at the mosquito lagoon and banana/Indian river. It’s gone to shit and it doesn’t receive lake Okeechobee water. After Irma hit a ton of septic tanks started leaking in the gulf (our current redtide started in October 2017 a month after Irma) not to mention all of the other failing septic tanks throughout Florida. But again that’s not the only cause to the problem. If you’ve ever flown over the beaches after it rains you would be appalled by the amount of runoff from everyone’s beautiful green lawns and ornamental landscaping but again not the only cause or problem. I love the line “please don’t comment unless you’ve done your research fully like I have.”. That is someone that already has thier mind made up and will not change it no matter what. They are looking for someone to blame and place the hate on. Conspiracy theories always spread hate and bias information. Most floridians don’t want to see oil rigs off our coast but people are angry that the department of energy gave money to a company with an alternative plan. This problem is one of complete negligence by our government not something done because they’re not wanting to fix it. But why haven’t they done anything. Because there is no viable solution for the multiple problems we have facing our waterways. That’s our freshwater problem. Now onto redtide, a natural occurring organism that feeds on the same nutrients as cyanobacteria. Cyanobacteria blooms in freshwater and redtide blooms in saltwater. Cyanbateria has a salinity tolerance and actually begins to die as it enters the estuaries. I guess we forgot about the major redtide event in 2005 that made it’s way into Tampa Bay and contaminated waters from Alabama all the way to the keys. Oh ya that’s right no social media to post pictures to. You actually had to go see it or read about it in the paper. Or the redtide events that happen in other states along the gulf of Mexico. Yes redtide is natural and yes cyanobacteria is natural what isn’t is the amount of nutrient pollution that these organisms feed on. That’s our problem…nutrient overload thanks to multiple sources throughout the state. But a company that just came about and the government are in a cover up and this was all caused by them because they were conducting an experiment to turn Florida into a biofuel manufacturer by poisoning all it’s water lol. While blue green algae can be converted into biofuel it is actually the worst algae to use due to low lipid count. On top of that they have yet to find a way to remove the algae from the lake to actually convert it into biofuel which the process is absolutely exorbitant. What is actually happening is the county is vacuuming the algae and water from Marina’s and dead-end canals, pumping it through a reverse osmosis machine, removing the solids to a landfill and pumping the disinfected water into injection Wells. Very crude but their only viable solution for now. This is all public knowledge as it’s all over the news/internet. People Keep stretching the truth and continue to connect dots that aren’t there and no good is coming from it. Just a bunch of finger pointing and mouth flapping.

  8. admin Post author

    yes that conspiracy theory is a long shot but I’m glad it prompted you to comment, thanks for the educated take.

  9. Evy

    Matt M. THANK YOU BIG — I was HOPEFUL someone here could provide information & illustrate this situation accurately. It is why I brought that post here– I figured someone here could “vet” it and it’d be someone whose opinion I trust. I appreciate the time you took to write .. not exactly what I enjoy reading with my morning coffee –but I want clarity and I want to thank you for providing it. Problems do not get solved with hysteria, hysteria is a distraction from solutions– and a waste of energy. I prefer not getting into the tarpit, but rather effective action.

  10. G

    I got good waves from Harvey. Hated for Tejas to get banged up by the storm.
    I could imagine that swell now and the red tide situation. Drive ya to drink!

  11. David Eilers

    Matt M is on the right track. It is a very complex mess we are dealing with at this point.
    Freshwater Cyanobacteria (remember there are also many, many saltwater species) – actually a large number of species produce toxins (microcystin, anabaena, oscillatoria, lygbya, lots of others) all of which are naturally occurring. Fortunately (for them) we have created a large number of incubators for them with shallow warm water, few macrophytes (vascular plants that compete for nutrients) and plenty of fertilizers and other chemical cocktails coming off lawns and roads. Yes, stormwater ponds. The vast majority of which are a temporary holding system until water level hit the overflow and SPLOOSH off it goes into the nearest creek, lake, estuary. The vast majority of lakes in Florida are also utilized as stormwater ponds. There is a legacy nutrient load at this point in the bottom sediments of every lake, pond, stream and estuary. These freshwater cyanobacteria are an issue for more than just the fish and turtles in the stormwater pond, they are also heptatoxic causing issues with your liver and kidneys with low to moderate long term exposure. So these blooms are occurring taking up lots of free nutrients in the water column and building up biomass. After the big rain comes and overflows downstream, eventually it hits a salinity level where the freshwater species of cyanobacteria dies, releasing its toxins as well as the nutrients it collected. While not “redtide” this does cause fishkills and respiratory irritation. What it also does is act as a transport for those nutrient to the estuaries and intercoastal/near coastal where naturally occurring dinoflaggellates (K. Brevis) can rapidly uptake and sustain a rapid bloom leading to a red tide outbreak. Thrown in the fancy new designer phosphorous compounds in fertilizers that are specifically designed for either rapid uptake, or long term slow release and you have an unlimited source in both fresh and salt.
    Growing up here since the early 80’s in N Pinellas I remember the past red tide events. Some were EXTREME, for example the 2005 one while I was doing an undergrad internship at Honeymoon, Caladesi and Anclote. There were dead dolphins, turtles and manatees back then as well. That said, this one has been a long sustaining bloom that seems to be more toxic to the larger organisms. Perhaps it is a combination of the redtide toxins and the cyanotoxins from dead freshwater sources creating a more potent cocktail.
    If anybody says something along the lines of “this is simple to fix” they have no knowledge of the complexity of ecological systems and the food web. That said, it is a simple fix, all we have to do is change our fascination of turfgrass, impervious surfaces and urban sprawl. Then dredge every waterbody in the state to remove legacy nutrient loads (while also somehow not destroying benthic invertebrate communities). Then rework all the altered hydrology and hydroperiod issues in the lakes, streams and wetlands (not just the everglades). Also change all the farming practices in the Mississippi Valley.

  12. JDH

    Good to see knowledgeable people on here.
    I’m of the belief that its a combination of multiple direct attacks, on the ecosystem. Some have greater influences than others, but all contribute to the decline of that perfectly Created balance.

    I’ve seen bad redtides spanning back decades.
    I specifically remember one, in 94-95 in Sarasota, where I have pics of me paddling out in Lido and the whole inside between the sandbar was littered with fish and turtles.
    Down south, in 05 there was a span during hurricane Rita, the redtide was bad for a few weeks and then there were two days with pumping swell, with nasty weeks of rotten marine carcasses below, from the weeks of decay. Up in Ana Maria wasn’t as bad.
    What’s very strange to me, is, the Infrequenty, in which the tide comes and goes. Winds and currents play a role.
    Isn’t it Strange, how in a summer where we’ve seen so many onshore days with a few gradients, one being a pretty darn strong one, the red tide is strong and pinned to the coast.
    Hmm, just a coincidence, right?

  13. Connor Geis

    http://mote.org/clientuploads/Documents/MPI/Final_MPI_RedTide_no_embargo_bar.pdf

    I encourage everyone to read this report, authored by Frank Alcock of New College of Florida in conjunction with Mote Marine Lab.

    Contrary to popular belief, Karenia Brevis actually originates offshore, due to a confluence of atmospheric and oceanographic phenomena. There is no doubt that the Lake Okeechobee problem exacerbates and extends the red tide outbreaks when the blooms are brought into our coastal waters, but this is a global scale issue. Factors such as the desertification of the African Sahel region, and the subsequent atmospheric transport of iron laden dust into the Gulf of Mexico’s waters, as well as, natural shifts in the Florida Loop current are factors that can seed red tide blooms.

    Blooms will occur no matter what. But as stewards of the environment and economic/recreational stakeholders living in coastal regions, we are responsible for the quality of our coastal waters, and can have an impact on how long these blooms occur. Hopefully future political regimes within the state will begin to value the environment, and stop the degradation of our local waters.

    Thank you,
    Connor Geis

  14. Rob Hyypio

    My own thoughts on the matter echo a few of the above statements that I will put into “Cliff Note” format in this first paragraph: While the organism itself is naturally occurring excess fertilizer / phosphates combined with run off in to waterways leads to red tide blooms. The frequency and intensity of the bloom is accelerated and magnified by high concentrations of phosphates. Many things are contributing factors other than the water being dumped out of the Lake O’ region including consumer usage of fertilizers on their own lawns throughout the state.

    As far as a solution is concerned, sadly – in reading some of the above well articulated comments – I’d have to agree – nothing will be easy. It was my understanding that the land south of the ‘Glades was once proposed to be purchased, developed into facilities that treat the water so it could then be released (or use for proposed commercial irrigation purposes)

    The above proposal as I understood it made far more sense than anything that is currently happening now. And while I am sure that the levels of phosphate-laden muck at the bottom of the lake are astronomical right now. I’d hate to think about the price we are going to pay down the road if some form of effective action doesn’t take place. Even if it means a slow corrective process over years (decades even) to address the issue effectively.

  15. Spygot

    Recently met with the president of Calusa Wateerkeeper, a member of the Waterkeeper Alliance, to discuss their interest in studying the economic aspects of the blue-green algae blooms. For those interested, touch base with them or similar groups to contribute to efforts for generating a viable solution. In advance of the meeting, it was suggested that I view the documentary “Toxic Puzzle” on Amazon Prime. Very interesting, well worth the mere $2.99. Check it out.

  16. admin Post author

    Rob has a really nice lawn in south st pete. Rob do you fertilize?

    My father in laws yard (over the years) in NE St Pete turned into broad leaf weeds, probably just the rain and shade but it looks great right now… short, green, nice lawn with no fertilizer, no turf, no pesticide.

  17. Rob Hyypio

    Micah – thanks for asking. I generally do NOT use fertilizer. As you probably remember, I compost as much as possible and reintroduce organic matter back into the soil for either quality lawn food or for beds around my house. I also generally don’t use pesticide either.

    If I urgently need to address something in the yard due to lack of nutrients, I won’t use granules as they can get washed off easily with heavy rain. I use miracle grow lawn feeder as it permeates into the soil quickly and is used by the plant immediate;y. Again though – even this is a very rare occasion where I’d use fertilizer … compost is the way to go!

  18. OriginalJud

    Ha ha I let my lawn go to short green growth of whatever sprouts up as well and looks good in summer but horrible once the rain stops. I just dont believe in wasting water like that to be a grass farmer.

  19. Rob Hyypio

    My yard is landscaped with a lot of trees that surround the green space. I don’t water very much, but I do when it’s needed (once a week at the most). I hardly have watered at all over the Summer. I understand the concerns people have when it comes to the “green lawn” debate. I think that a lot of people overuse fertilizer and over-water their yards. Neither is practice is good for the environment.

    However, a well responsibly maintained green space surrounded by trees and nice shrubs has advantages: It attracts local wildlife (birds, squirrels, possum, owls, hawks, etc) and literally cools down the immediate area and surroundings. Not to mention making property value go up.

    I just wish people would be responsible when tending to their property.

  20. admin Post author

    Rob has really tall silk oaks and china berry trees in his yard these trees transpire more water than pines and oaks which keeps Robs yard 5-10 degrees cooler than others. Better growing conditions…

  21. Rob Hyypio

    Got rid of the remaining 2 China berry trees bud. The Silk is going to go next. I’m keeping all the Oaks … the one in the back is enormous and keep it real shady. And the ones in the front do the same. Micah – you should see that Plumeria that I got from you years ago now … it’s the best one in the neighborhood. Requires almost zero maintainence

  22. Surf chattah

    Tropical storm Gordon has formed already this a.m does it change the scope for scoring some surf? Hopefully red tide isn’t as bad in manatee

  23. fuggin

    EC looks to go big boy mid next week, fun swell looks to come up this weekend. Taking some days off for sure 🤙

  24. G-dawg

    Question….are there more closeouts when you get a 13 second period swell in Brevard county or is it the angle of the beach versus swell angle…. anyone?

  25. JDH

    Closeout city on much of the brevard coast on long period east or southeast swells. If you search from Canaveral to Spanish house, you’ll find a shoulder somewhere. I personally like to go north of the cape during cane swells especially when its southeast. There’s always at least one spot that works. I’ve had luck around south cocoa right where it turns into Patrick’s afb with there being less closeouts. The sand shifts so much though, its hard to tell.
    I’m hoping a few days down the road, that it turns more out of the north and my favorite break on the e.c of fla, the waaaaaay outside at Jupiter inlet turns on. There will be nobody out there but me and deep water swell. Want to get the max swell that is on offer? Double leash it and you’ll find it there.
    Yewwwww!

  26. m-dub

    We scored great waves at Bethune on a hurricane swell like this

    Sebastian inlet was closed out as were many Brevard spots. Monster hole probably good
    Ft pierce was very small when I looked

  27. RUSS-D

    I made it over to the East Coast today(Sunday). Surfed Lori Wilson until almost noon. It was waist to chest high with a few head high sets thrown in. A lot of close-outs, but also a ton of makeable shoulders. I had a blast and I don’t think I hurt my back too much. Definitely not the best waves around, but there were some really fun gems in the mix of bouncing, closed out, weird wobble of high tide. I even got a couple of nice barrels. Had a bunch of screaming fast rides, made some fun floaters, and threw some water around, and got to surf with some good friends I haven’t seen in a while. Not bad for a Sunday morning road trip.

  28. Chauncy

    Hey gulf coasters! Over in brevard for the swell. Hoping to score in the morning (monday) but it looks like it will be coming up on high tide. All the spots seem to only work on low tide. Anyone have a high tide spot recommendation??
    Thanks!

  29. Rob Hyypio

    Me and Chris also surfed Lori Wilson Park until about Noon and then went down the road to Hangers at PAB … Russ called it accurately … head high at best. Lots of makeable waves … kinda soft at times … but when you’d be in the right position, you’d find some long lines. I took a few into the beach from the outside.

    Side note: the seaweed at Lori Wilson Park yesterday was unlike anything that I have ever seen. It had to be 5′ thick under the water and was everywhere. If you took a wave into the inside, you’d have to paddle back out through it and by the time you’d make it back outside an entire clump would be clinging to your leash and dragging for your entire paddle.

  30. admin Post author

    Check Cocoa Beach- the best I saw was Playalinda long drive but worth it glassy a frames close to the beach, beware of grey suits

  31. admin Post author

    knee to thigh with waist high sets this am. I heard wildo is good maybe later… bigger up north
    tomorrow real swell as Bermuda buoy is 8-10ft N

  32. Rob Hyypio

    Looks like the latest run of the EURO model would give the Gulf some waves from Flo …

    Monday would see onshore wind swell from the looks of it if the latest run (8:30 am Wed 9/12) holds true.

    It’s forecast to slow down and then do a South drift …

  33. DW

    Took so time off and went to Brevard area Sunday and Monday and got good surf thus confirming what Rob and Russ commented above. 🙂 That little park just north of the Pineda Cswy. was the ticket for us both days, handled the morning hi tide well and just got better as the tide dropped until the light onshores got on it. As expected surfers were coming out of the hills and all the lots were packed. Looks like waves for days over there to enjoy if you can.

  34. m-dub

    NHC updated its track also Florence is now forecast to drift sw

    DW glad you scored. I just got out of the water here in Rincon it’s been a fun morning of waist-high waves good form

  35. JDH

    Florence drifting south with north northeast wind over open water, longer, will assure a nice northeast swell that will light up South Florida.
    The quicker it stalls, the more time it has to build that fetch and send it to the big bend in Palm Beach county and all the breaks south of there.
    SOBE could throw over those wide open pits.

    Talk about a great week to surf up and down the eastcoast after a flat spell.

  36. fuggin

    I scored a few spots in Brevard yesterday(Wed) small fun waves in the am near Patrick with light wind. The waves grew about 1/2ft every hour during the afternoon with some wonkey backwash action around the downs/pier area. By 5-6pm it was overhead+ sets breaking 150yds off the pier 🤤 with 60-70% closing out on the mid to inside but some pushing through. Fun day overall. Got to use several of my boards that have been neglected. Even saw a few GC guys sporting some Compound stickers on their boards.

  37. RUSS-D

    I am contemplating heading over tomorrow(Sunday 8/16). Looks like there is another pulse coming and should be clean and shoulder high on sets? anyone else thinking this will actually happen? I am going to make the call tonight after the latest forecasts are out. But I know the knowledge base in here is as good or way better than most forecast sites.

  38. JDH

    Russ, go east man. If your back can pop up and you feel good about it, make the drive.
    My backs not letting go atm. If yours is strong, take the B Line. It appears to be worth it. As far as the models are concerned the winds supposed to be offshore. I live in Northwest Pasco, I the winds been blowing WNW here all day solid. Makes me think offshore over east for more than just the few morning hours, then it goes to crap.
    All those missing hours of waves while the back had you out of commission, will be worth it.
    Maybe by now, it’s less crowded in the 321.

  39. JDH

    Rob, that North swell never materialized.
    Too much east flow build up ahead of tge storm to allow and north to south to ride over top of it.
    I checked the cams all day. Nothing, Zilch, Nada.
    All the forecast blew that one too.
    I’ll take note on how the angle of approach stopped that north swell to get going.
    I’ve opted out on many days in Brevard to score down south the following day.
    Was bummed it didn’t show.

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