Steamer Lane Cliff Breaks After One Too Many Acid Drops - Stab Mag

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The surfer on this wave caught it inside the impact zone before the cliff collapsed. Heavy. Framegrab: Surfline

Steamer Lane Cliff Breaks After One Too Many Acid Drops

Coastal erosion heads north.

elsewhere // Feb 11, 2023
Words by August Howell
Reading Time: < 1 minutes

Steamer Lane has been home to many remarkable surfing moments. 

At this historic venue, Flea and the West Siders assaulted all things above the lip and all things monochrome. Local hero Nat Young won the O’Neill Coldwater Classic at his home break in 2008. Just last year, a handful of Monster-fueled savages competed for glory here, risking limb and board while flinging themselves (and attempting to land) off the fabled cliff.

Oh yeah, and even otters love this place. 

Yesterday morning just before 11 a.m., a large portion of the cliff gave way. A decent-sized crowd was in the water at the time, and one surfer was lucky enough to catch a wave from inside the impact zone before it was detonated. The Surfline cam caught the footy. Fortunately, there was no carnage.

After the Black’s Beach cliff toppled over, this is the second large sea bluff collapse at a renowned surf spot in less than a month. Are the flurry of atmospheric rivers rushing California to blame?

How exactly this will change the wave below Jacob Szekely’s favorite diving board is still unclear. Maybe it will make a wedge. Or destroy the slot for good. Only time (and swell) will tell. One thing is for sure, however: the Santa Cruz groms will find another slippery, treacherous path down the cliff to jump off. And they’ll land in the lineup deeper than you.


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