Winter, it’s the yin to summer’s yang. It’s a time of year that’s less sunscreen, boardshorts, 45-minute in-and-out sessions and more booties, a hood, and 30 minutes of psych-up prep followed by 15 minutes of paddling around in cold neoprene. Some like it hot, but winter’s all about serving it cold. But then again, you can’t appreciate one without the other.
Thankfully, winter still has its perks. For one, there’s the surf itself. Winter means storms and storms mean waves, and it’s not uncommon to score consecutive weeks of head-high-plus waves.
We’re all about maximizing our time in the water here at Cali Squeeze, and we know this is unexpectedly one of the best times of year to do it. But with so many different swells stacking up on long-term forecasts, we know dialing in the right gear can be tricky. So, we called up Cali Squeeze Ambassador and close friend Grant Noble to chat about what his favorite boards are for the chilly season.
Grant has one of the most coveted quivers in surf. It’s as interesting as himself, and he’s also the perfect person to talk to when we have questions about diversifying our fiberglass so we can make the most of our emptier-than-normal locale. We got an exclusive look at his arsenal, and it’s a treat. There are hand shapes, traditional models, and even the odd high-performance(ish) thruster. It offers a little something for everyone, and doesn’t leave a great deal to be desired. Seeing as the closest thing you’ll get to tasting summer is a sip of an ice-cold Blood Orange, Tangerine Daze, or Lemon Chill Squeeze, you may as well read on and learn how to make the most of your winter now.
“So, from left to right we have 5’7 Burch-inspired asymmetrical, a 6’2 Trailer Park prototype twin trailer, 6’6 Russell Surfboards Retro step up, 5’7 Trailer Park prototype twin trailer, and a 5’2 Round Nosed white dove,” said Grant.
“The 5’7 asymmetrical & the 5’7 trailer park are my, ‘standard shortboards.’ Both boards are designed to be ridden in waves from chest high to a few feet overhead. The asymmetrical is the go-to if it’s running lefts, the frontside for me. It would be like a twin fin on the toe side and a quad when you’re on your heels.
“The 6’2 trailer park & the 6’6 Russell Retro step-up are my boards for when it’s overhead. The trailer park’s bread and butter is when you want to do big drawn-out carves on an open face. The retro step-up has been my magic board that has been on ice for when it’s really good. The thing is meant for the tube.
“Lastly is the round-nosed white dove. It’s a spin-off from one of the old Russell Shapers back in the 80s. I tweaked the template a bit and it has been the board that is the jack of all trades. If there are tubes, turns, jumps, and dumps this board is the golden ticket.
“This winter these boards will rotate around the California coast, Hawaii, and Mexico. They’ll be perfect for any and all.”
With that, you should have all the inspiration you need to grab a board and get out there. Sure, the ocean may be dark and stormy, but your Squeeze will taste that much better after you dry off.