The Weekend

Peter Mel Tim Harden

The weekend has come and gone, and upon the Friday’s arrival, the drain of a few exhausting and stressful weeks clouded my ability to see the potential for a fun weekend in the sun. After a decent night of sleep, Saturday hit and the opportunity for coastal California outdoor exploration was seen as clear as the new day.

Saturday morning brought an interesting “fly fishing the surf” social at the local fly shop. And afterwards, the cruiser was loaded with surfing gear for a late-afternoon paddle out at Pleasure Point in Santa Cruz. At the end of a surfing drought of sorts, I was happy to get out but had low expectations for performance.

After crossing paths with big wave surfing legend, Peter Mel (who won Mavericks last year), I had one of the best sessions of my life. And in between waves, I mingled with local marine wildlife that were also looking for action in the water.

Tim Harden and Clara

The Sunday morning tide just after dawn invited fly fishing opportunity in the surf at a more remote spot near Santa Cruz. There was definitely fish in the water, as a surfer told me he’d just been out with dolphins who were cruising for critters, but my attention to my dog slowed my normally aggressive approach to the surf.

Surfing and fly fishing are more than hobbies. The previous four paragraphs outline events over the course of two days, but for me, they had a powerful effect on me. The attention I was giving to various tasks and daily stresses prior to hitting the water are now something that seem distant and forgettable. Nature has a way of helping restore and making us return to being human. With this, the nonsense disappears and clarity brings reason. Suddenly only the simple things matter.

Shaka and tight lines.


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