Pump House, Pacific Beach

Joe Lodico

Lives: La Jolla/UTC

Surfing: Pump House, Pacific Beach

Last week's big swell reversed almost all aspects of the San Diego surfing scene; tourists and kooks fled the water and left the waves to the experienced. From Crystal Pier to Loring Street, where normally hundreds of people surf, only four men paddled out. Joe Lodico hurriedly parked his white pickup and joined a small group of friends standing on Ocean Avenue at the end of Loring Street. Excited cell-phone calls between him and his crew helped them decide that Pump House would be the best break to ride.

"We got up this morning at about six and started calling each other. We all hit different spots and called. But it's really weird with this storm; the coves and cliffs were kind of bad, which is where everyone expected the biggest waves to be."

http://www.surfline.com reported 15-foot swells that day for the Pacific Beach area.

"Tourmaline's holding itself, which is backwards," Joe said. "Usually Tourmaline's not that great. Even locals will tell you that, but today it's holding. From Old Man's past Tourmaline parking lot to the point is huge," he said, sweeping his hand toward the Pacific.

Joe's plan for surfing the unusually large waves?

"Get in it and go hard." Joe considers himself an intermediate surfer and said a hobbyist of lesser skill could get hurt.

"Oh, yeah. Someone will get hurt in the next two days. Every year somebody's pulled out. There's already someone killed up in Northern California...either yesterday or the day before."

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