Costa Rica Surf Report: March 2011
Costa Rica Surf Report may 2011

By Greg Gordon


Caribbean Coast: This month will see a decline in swell as the winter storms passing off the U.S. coast lose their steam. Waves will run from knee- to head-high with only one to two more days of overhead juice. The best time to surf is early morning, before onshore winds kick in around 10 a.m., and will stick around through to the afternoon boomer.

Pacific Coast: Prime time for waves and crowds as the Southern Hemi starts churning up storms and swell. The 9th through the 15th of the month will have two-foot overhead Southwest waves, and then another big one arrives late in April, around the 23rd. Bring the sunscreen, as all-day surf sessions can damage the skin and this is still the “dry” season. New moon: April 3 Full moon: April 17


It may be a little late to find your favorite hideout for Spring Break, but you can still get a SUV rental from and go wave hunting. Now is the time is to be planning your summer vacation, and we have the lowest rates for car rentals anywhere combined with great service and newer vehicles. We are now working with Tico Travel to improve our offerings. If you don’t want to drive, and instead wish to be jetted straight to the lineup, then a surf camp would be a better option. There are dozens of them around the country and only we have the details on which camps are certified and who has the best boards to learn on. There is a camp for every budget and skill level here — Safari Surf School ( even has pro surfer Serena Brooke coming June 19-26 to help women surf stronger.

Witchs Rock Surf Camp ( plans a “summer of love” bus trip down the coast, hitting up different breaks. And Waves Costa Rica ( in Tamarindo is spending their weekends helping local kids learn to surf. Best flights: Jet Blue has a few summer seats from Orlando for under $300, and Spirit Air will pop a 48-hour special for a flight from Fort Lauderdale for under $200 (after taxes and luggage fees). My last ticket purchased was on American from July 10-24 from Orlando for $340. Just email us to help plan your customized vacation–


Quiksilver recently hosted a King of the Groms contest in Playa Hermosa, where the winner would be flown to Mexico to compete in the regional finals. The finalists in that event will fly to France to keep against the best <16 surfers in the world and hang out with the pros on the ASP tour. Over 60 groms arrived March 19 from Panama, Costa Rica, and Nicaragua, and after a day of surfing clean chest- to head-high waves, CRSURF team rider and Pavones local Noe Mar McGonagle took the crown. Upcoming events are the National Surf Tour contest in Nosara, sponsored also by Quiksilver, on April 2 and 3. And on the Caribbean coast, the Puerto Viejo Open Pro is set for May 7.


Etnies recently started a “Buy a Shoe, Plant a Tree” where they are pledging to plant 35,000 trees in the rainforests of Costa Rica, one for each Jameson 2 Eco shoe sold. Skater and team rider Ryan Sheckler was flown to help with the first plantings, as well as team surfers Chris Del Moro, CJ Kanuha and Benji Weatherly. Watch their video that explains their mission here:

The first fines ever were levied against a foreign boat for landing shark fins illegally at a private dock. Even though the captain will serve no jail time and the boat was not seized, the Tawainese company will be forced to pay 34 million colones (~$68,000) for its environmental crime. Costa Rican law states that sharks have to be landed with their fins attached, with the purpose to limit how many sharks can be killed for their fins since many species are now in danger of going extinct. CR Surf Travel Company is a member of 1% for the Planet, pledging to donate one percent of our proceeds to environmental causes. It is part of our mission to help keep our oceans blue by supporting small hotels and camps that contribute to their community.

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