Finding More Waves and Great People – Puerto Escondido to Salina Cruz

We spent two weeks exploring and surfing the Oaxacan Coast from Puerto Escondido to Salina Cruz.  This area is really famous amongst surfers around the world, but was surprisingly not too crowded.

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My favorite wave, Chipehua


It was really helpful to have our van to get out to all the point breaks along the way. We first hit Puerto Escondido.  Which is a popular resort town with a massive intense wave at Playa Zicatela.   Many people drown here, and it is so powerful that you can snap your board or even yourself in even small surf, so I decided not to surf.

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Playa Zicatela in Puerto Escondido

It was cool to camp right in town and spend a night, but we both are not really looking to do any more “resort” towns.  We don’t go out and “party” much like we used to.  Every day is a bit of an adventure and resort/gringo towns are generally expensive and cater too much to vacation partiers. As we continued our way down the coast toward Salina Cruz, we passed several little beach towns.  Many had little yoga centers, bars, cafes, but not great surf.  I’m really focused on getting better at surfing, with a goal of getting in 100 days of surfing in during the trip.  I’ve been keeping a surf journal and so far I’ve gotten in about 40 days, and we’ve yet to hit the awesome waves in Central America.

Our next stop was in a spot called Zipolite.  There is a wave there and it has a backpacker, weed smoking, nude beach, graffiti bungalow vibe, which was interesting for a few days.  We camped under some of these graffiti beach bungalows next to some traveling musicians.  We liked the laid back vibe and amazingly, we got wifi right on the beach, which made it a cool place to catch up on things.

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Our camp spot at Zipolite

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Zipolite had a really cool vibe, with bonfires and concerts on the beach at night

This place also has several bars, and luckily I was able to see my University of Wisconsin Badgers play in the finals of the NCAA tournament vs Duke.  It was an incredible feat for the Badgers to make it to the finals, but they just didn’t have enough to beat the powerhouse Duke in the end. Where we went next is where we spent most of our time and that is Cocoleoco surf camp in Concepcion Bamba near Salina Cruz.

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The surf break at conception bamba where we spent most of our time

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Dawn at conception bamba

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Our camping spot at CocoLeoCo's Surf Camp

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Some of the crew at CocoLeoCo's surf camp - Lina and Tony sitting on the left were great to hang out with and Lina and Jenine got to do yoga together each morning

This is the perfect spot to stay, meet other surfers, get some great home cooked meals, and surf some of the best waves in Mexico. I really love meeting surfers on the road.  Surfing is one of those few passions that addicts people and drives them to travel all over the world in search of great waves.  Almost everyone we met at the surf camp was on a long term trip (months+) looking for surf.  There were 3 vans there that had driven from California like us.   Everyone was so talented and dedicated, asleep by 9pm up before dawn.  Eat, sleep, surf.  This environment really helped me focus and realize all the areas I need to improve.  Need a lot more experience and wave count to be where I want to be, and hopefully the upcoming 3 months in El Salvador, Nicaragua and Costa Rica will allow me to progress rapidly. I am so thankful for these past few weeks to get to surf some of the best waves of my life so far though (Concepcion Bamba, Chipehua and San Diegos).

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Parked at one of our favorite breaks, a long right at playa San Diego Oaxaca Coast

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Tony getting a nice wave at concepcion bamba

In particular, the last two days, I had the best sessions of my life at this huge long right wave at Chipehua.  Legendary surfer Tom Curren http://tomcurren.com/  was in the lineup one day (it was only 5 of us in the water), and complemented me every time I got a wave.   All week, I got to surf with so many amazing people including British Pro Taz Knight http://www.tazknight.co.uk/ who was staying in our camp with his friends from Devon.

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Legendary surfer Tom Curren was in the water with me at Chipehua.

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Me at Chipehua

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Taz Knight and the guys from Devon - on an epic California to Central America surf trip

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It was fun handing out with these guys from LA. They were driving back to california from Central America. http://vwvagabond.tumblr.com/

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Playa Chipehua

So blessed to have this time to focus on new skills and meeting new people! Next up, we take a (very) small break from surfing by crossing our next border into Guatemala.

More pictures and videos:

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A fun group of hitchhikers we gave a ride to on our way to Puerto Escondido

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watching the NCAA basketball tournament. Badgers advancing to the finals

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Our new pan am travel buddies from Aussie, dealing with a fuel leak that requires a lot of "fuel ups"

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Hanging out in San Jose Del Pacifico

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San Jose Del Pacifico is a beautiful mountain town that we stayed over night on our way to Puerto Escondido

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We met Joan along the way and we gave her a ride to the coast

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The main attraction in San Jose Del Pacifico are the magic mushroom. But they weren't in season when we passed through

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Watching a few surfers in Puerto

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Playa Zicatela in Puerto Escondido

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Sunset at Puerto Escondido

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At night we walked the strip in Puerto and found this awesome funk band

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Our camp spot in Puerto Escondido, right off the main strip in front of the beach.

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On our way down the coast, we stopped and did a wetlands and crocodile tour. Here is a Cocodrillo!

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Cocodrillos in the wild

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We also came across some Hungry Iguanas

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Iguanas are pretty awesome animals to watch

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Our next stop after Puerto Escondido, Playa Zipolite

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Our camp spot at Zipolite

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Date night, Zipolite

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Zipolite had a really cool vibe, with bonfires and concerts on the beach at night

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The surf break at conception bamba where we spent most of our time

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Hanging out at CocoLeocos surf camp. Fun people and interesting animals

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Playa Concepion Bamba near our surf camp

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Small waves coming through at Bamba

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Parked at one of our favorite breaks, a long right at playa San Diego Oaxaca Coast

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Dawn at conception bamba

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Tony getting a nice wave at concepcion bamba

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morning surf

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My favorite wave, Chipehua

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An epic right at Chipehua

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Playa Chipehua

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Legendary surfer Tom Curren was in the water with me at Chipehua.

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Jenine caught a pic of me on a wave. The right here offered up minute plus rides

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Chipehua

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Me at Chipehua

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Rolling up to the beach at Chipehua

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Some of the crew at lunch at CocoLeoCo's surf camp

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Our camping spot at CocoLeoCo's Surf Camp

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Taz Knight and the guys from Devon. On an epic California - Central America surf trip

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Met Tony at Coco's. One of the nicest guys and awesome surfer from Ireland

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Passing time between sessions on the Slack Line

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It was fun handing out with these guys from LA. They were driving back to california from Central America. http://vwvagabond.tumblr.com/

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Me surfing by Tom Curren. minute plus rides with the biggest legend in Surfing

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Tom Curren

 

Posted in Mainland Mexico, Mexico Tagged with: , , , , , , ,
7 comments on “Finding More Waves and Great People – Puerto Escondido to Salina Cruz
  1. Jane says:

    Lizards are cool! But the raccoon….? You both look great. Miss you.

    • Jenine says:

      Thanks Jane! Its actually a coatimundi which seems like a cross between a racoon and an anteater (really long snout). Miss you!

  2. Jim Wasielewski says:

    Jenine and George,

    Thanks for all of the posts and keeping us all updated. As I sit here at a Middle School monitoring student testing via the computers, your post let’s me get to the true sense of exploration and life. Love your comment George on how you and Jenine are meeting so many different people with similar life interests.

    • Jenine says:

      Thanks Uncle Jim! We should be in Costa Rica in not too long. Every time I think of Costa Rica I picture that white water rafting picture of you and Aunt Patty I saw as a kid. Can’t wait to get there and experience it in person!

  3. Emma says:

    Sorry to have missed you guys in Guatemala—safe travels through Central America and beyond! 🙂

  4. Emilio says:

    Mexico is part of North America not Central America.