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Shot by Chris Grant / @jettygirlsurfmag
As the chilly winter months approach, it can be difficult to stay motivated to get out there and surf. While people from snowier places may scoff at our “winter,” there is no denying that the water temperature can be less than pleasant in San Diego from December to March. With the sun going down at the ungodly hour of 4:30, most of us have no choice but to get our weekday surfs in before work begins, in the wee hours of the morning. I know that waking up extra early just to get cold and wet before a long day of work can be unmotivating to say the least, but thanks to some of our favorite modern comforts, the wintertime slump is easier to get over than ever before!
Those of us who have been surfing in California regularly for years and years are more than familiar with cold water / weather surfs, and we can all attest to the fact that good quality wetsuits are some of the most important contributors to making these sessions more enjoyable. Every year, wetsuit technology continues to improve, so donning a thick full suit no longer means immobility and discomfort. In San Diego, some make it through the winter in a 3’2, but many people find that a 4’3 really helps keep the muscles toasty during a surf. All of the major surf brands manufacture 4’3s for men and women, and many companies even offer 5’3s, for those who get extra cold. Although they can be somewhat pricey, a high quality wetsuit is an imperative investment for any surfer that wants to make it through the winter comfortably. Check out Hansen’s handy guide to buying the right wetsuit here!
As for après surf, there are plenty of comfy cozy clothes to toss on, while you sip your coffee, kept nice and hot by an insulated tumbler, such as this one made by outdoor convenience specialist YETI. Even whilst getting out of your wetsuit, changing ponchos are still all the rage, so you don’t have to freeze your buns off doing the classic towel change. If you really want to beat the cold, put your wetsuit on at home before surfing... don’t worry, I won’t tell any of your friends. Getting a crisp winter surf in before work gets the day started on a positive note and takes care of exercise for the day, so there’s really no reason not to!