Cocoa Beach Surf Trivia Page 2

Surf Reports

During the late 60's , I would call Ron Jon's {person to person] asking for "KAHUNA". Back then, you could hear the whole conversation between the operator and the party you were calling. The surf shop would reply "He's not here. he will be back between 2 and 3". Or "He will be back at 5 or 6", or "He was gone for the day". TRANSLATION: surf was 2 to 3 feet, or 5 to 6 feet, or "Gone for the day" meant there was no surf. The operator would then inform me that Kahuna was not there and would ask me if I would like to try back later. I would hang up and get my dime back. (Living on the gulf coast). That is how we got our surf reports!! Things have changed! The phone call now cost $.50
BIG SMILE................ And I don't know if anyone working at Ron Jons knows who Kahuna is.

PS, In 1969 a former friend of mine borrowed my 9'6" Dewey Weber Harold Iggy model and took it to the east coast, (Cocoa Beach), got drunk and left it there. If you know anything about this board, please let me know!

- Dave

A few cocoa beach memories.......

I learned to surf behind the Satellite Hotel across from Jamaica Drive. Johnny Cash used to play there.

I remember... Late to little league games due to surfing, burying a board in the sand when on restriction, driving at 14 yrs old was legal. CC Riders, Surfboards Hawaii, Da Cat models. Cocoa Beach High class president in 8th, 9th and 10th grade, teen town, lightning storms. Surf trips with Dan Mode and friends to New Smyrna, little league catcher with Richard Manzo. Pithcing a perfect game, Mrs. Edgar's art class, the drunk french teacher, shells in the grass during football practice, Steve Petro playing center, Jeff Goldsmith throwing me touchdown passes, Canaveral Pier surf contest with Jude, Skip Fry, Ron Stoner and Dale Dodson staying at our house, knee pads, surfing behind boats, lots of good memories and times. Seems kinda hard to find it's soul now. O'Hare surfboards only ones, then some guy from Jersey moved down and opened a weird little surf shop in an old gas station, never really accepted by locals. Noseriding, noseriding and noseriding, driving on the beach, teaching a 15 yr old newcomer to surf who became Brevard County's first surfing fatality, taking our boat thru the canals to school and, and...

"If I could find my way back home, where would I go?" R.Adams

- David Carson -

Surfing Cocoa Beach in the 60's

Yes the Cocoa Beach Pier, 4th and 16th streets, PAFB Pier and the O-Club were THE stops in the 60's.

There was another place south of jetty park called "Stucks", (an area at the end of Central Avenue now occupied by Royal Mansions Resorts). I remember a large stand of Australian pines and a beach house positioned very close to the shore beyond the dune line. Surf there was usually small, but we always had to stop by to see if anyone needed to be pulled out of the soft and loose sand.

Surf inside the jetties was rare and always risky. Climbing out on the rocks with a 10' plus board as waves crushed over the jetties was well worth the ride on the unique "lefts" into the port channel. It only took one wipeout for me to realize the greatest undertow I've ever experienced. Hanging onto my board was the only thing that saved me that day. When the wave crashed, the board and I were pulled under. My arms and legs were wrapped around the board like there was no tomorrow, (which was almost the case for me). You can't imagine the sensation of not knowing the direction to the surface. As I weakened, the board was pulled away from me. I remember grabbing my knees and bouncing around until I broke the surface with my face only to see another 5' wave crashing over me. Again I was pulled under until I thought my lungs would burst.

- John Van Lear

Doze Were Da Days...

Dear BH2 ~
I spent the winters of '68-'69 and '69-'70 living in Cocoa Beach, mostly surfing the pier. Out of college, money spent, see no future, pay no rent. First year, I lived in my VW van. Lots of cold snaps that winter with many nights in the twenties. (Thank goodness global warming doesn't let that happen anymore.) Camped in the little pine woods just south of the Pier (where the Chateau high-rise condo now stands). Lots of others from all around the U.S. were there, and at Jetty Park too (free parking then!).

The next winter I graduated to a frumpy little pink stucco efficiency two doors north of the Pier (also gone to high-rise now) for $25 a week. Had to boil the water and skim the minerals off, but otherwise it was a heckuva deal.

Quite a few good surfing days that spring -- but real life eventually intervened. Loaded up the van and parked overnight along the Indian River in Titusville to watch Apollo 13 leave for the moon in April 11, 1970. As soon as it was out of sight, started the engine and drove home to Long Island, never to return (well, almost never)...

But now after 30 years of practicing law (still trying to get it right), I have blown my meager savings on a little dump in the Groves -- so I can spend my twilight years once again surfing the Pier. :]

So, starting this fall, when you Pier cowboys (and girls) see the old fart snowbird out in the water in the early a.m., think fondly of the "old days" you missed, and cut him some slack, okay? ;]

- Russell Stein - Montauk, New York

Canaveral Pier

I started surfing at Cocoa Beach pier in 1968. We traveled south from DeLand, Fl. to camp out on the beach (unless we were run off by the CBPD).

We were in high school at the time and always looked forward to the weekend and the great waves at the pier and Patricks.

The first time I ever got tubed was at the pier! Riding my 9'10" Hansen. The best of times!!

- Henry Coggins

More Stories From Way Back When...

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Anyone want to talk old surf story or have original trivia about Cocoa Beach and Brevard County?
and let all these new kids know what it was REALLY like pre-internet days. Peace. BH2