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Socially Distanced Surfing

Updated: Feb 10, 2021

By Lily Slakoff

Winter sports look much different this year due to COVID-19’s social distancing guidelines. Unfortunately, PLHS has no winter sports teams that are currently practicing or competing. However, this isn’t crushing any PL surfers’ spirits. Surfing is a covid-friendly sport, since everyone participating is spaced out and independent. The winter season’s variation in prevailing wind direction and speed results in larger waves, creating ideal surfing conditions. In January 2019, the waves at the OB Pier reached around 20 feet, causing the pier to sustain severe damage that closed it for months. As we roll into this winter, surfers are excited and optimistic for a season of good surf, especially after this summer’s less-than-satisfactory waves.

Fortunately, I was able to speak with Tyler Badet, a senior who has been a member of the PLHS Surf Team since his freshman year. When I asked him about his opinion on the current circumstances and its influence on surfing, he said “I’m disappointed that we are not able to compete due to COVID-19 guidelines, but I’m hopeful that once the restrictions are lifted, we’ll be back in the water.” Competitions may look different with the possibility of no spectators allowed and social distancing between heats, but that won’t dampen the excitement of being able to surf while representing PLHS.

PLHS Surf member Tyler Badet catches a wave in this shot, taken by Lily Slakoff

Regardless of what happens with the surf team restrictions, as early as sunrise you can watch excited surfers in the water, many of them PLHS Surf team members. We’re excited to see what this season brings for those ready to catch a wave.


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