(Jan. 13, 2023) Being as that we are more or less in the “middle” of winter, I thought it would be an idea to continue with a winter surfing theme.

Winter surfing can almost be considered a sport within a sport or an art within an art.

Assuming that one isn’t in a position to relocate to a warmer climate, if surfing is on the schedule, winter has to be dealt with.

To some, it’s really no big deal.

The attitude is simple, just put on the gear and go. And basically, that’s all it really takes.

But look a bit deeper and much more can be said.

To stay warm, it is wise to start warm.

Unless a change into a wetsuit can be done in a heated vehicle an idea would be to get suited up at home or at some heated locale.

We’re talking full “thicker” wetsuit, wetsuit boots, gloves and a hood or a cap. Cold water is no joke, never mind colder air.

The water is currently hovering around 43 degrees and if we’re lucky, it won’t drop any more.

The air temperatures are roughly ranging from lows in the mid-20s to highs in the mid-40s.

Granted, there are variations to these air temperature figures but these are the normal or average temperatures.

The water will generally stay more consistent, not changing nearly as much as the air.

Oh, and let’s not forget the wind chill factor. The wind chill will naturally make the air feel colder.

It doesn’t take much figuring to realize that the winter encompasses roughly half of the year.

To keep an edge in one’s surfing it’s a good idea to maintain a continuity.

There’s no shame in laying off during the colder times, but it seems to take a while to get back into form once it warms up.

It’s safe to say that it all comes down to a matter of desire. The fact is that wetsuits work pretty well and can actually make winter surfing rather pleasant.

In my travels to warmer areas, it would be rather easy to get into conversations with local surfers.

When I’d explain winter surfing back home the comments would either range from them thinking I was a gnarly, grisly guy to me being a complete nut ball.

My reaction would be to reply, “You would probably do the same thing if you lived in the same or similar area.”

Winter surfing is really a pretty special thing. Those that participate know the drill. They know what I’m talking about.

Yes, it takes a bit to get used to but once you push over the edge you find that it’s really not that big a thing.

Again, it’s all in what you get used to.

Sure, it costs a few dollars but once the equipment is acquired everything else is basically free. And even with the money spent, the surfer generally finds that it’s worth every penny.

— Dave Dalkiewicz is the owner of Ocean Atlantic Surf Shop in Ocean City.

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