"Everyone who surfs here is an absolute barney!" laments the lead quote in BeachGrit.com's most recent article in which they "officially designate" El Porto as the de facto 'Most Surfed Beach' and 'Most Reliable Wave in Los Angeles County' - though they fail to find those exact correct words.
According to BeachGrit's reports, El Porto's reputation has grown - in part, they claim, because it is the home break of universally beloved erstwhile World Surf League CEO Erik Logan (though somehow we surfers in El Porto never knew or cared). El Porto's reputation as a surf mecca has grown so much that beachgoers local and worldwide now apparently expect Porto's ever-reliable, consistently-walled shore break to mimic Kelly Slater's Wave-Pool conditions. One surfer of that mentality took to social media to complain that he was surfing El Porto for the "hundredth consecutive day" and was still disappointed, ironically calling the only place to surf everyday in Los Angeles, the area's "worst wave," spawning the intentionally misleading click-bate headline atop Google News: "El Porto officially designated worst wave in Sourthern California!”
El Porto "officially designated" de facto "Los Angeles County's Most Reliable Wave" and "Most Surfed Beach."
Why El Porto, a Los Angeles County seaside community of about 2,000 people, best-known for its popular surfing beach in view of the Chevron refinery and the LAX flight path, would be making "news" most might never understand. Thankfully, BeachGrit.com writers and similarly adoring fans of former WSL CEO Erik Logan recognize El Porto's local surf scene and its importance in the greater surfing world as the de facto "Most Reliable Wave In Southern California." And thankfully, we humans have Google News to differentiate for us what real "news" is. (Yikes!)
The most recently breaking "news" about El Porto (according to Google News) focuses solely on a social media video rant by surfing's most highly recognized authority - the otherwise completely unkown and irrelevent bodywash company @Salty_Beards - in which an unseen videographer summizes that "everyone who surfs" El Porto (aside from himself, of course) "is an absolute barney" while he creepily videos an unsuspecting young man fresh out of his wetsuit, rubbing his genitals. (What I wouldn't do to remove that image from my memory!)
The videographer goes on to assert, with the greatest respect and humility of course, that he is surfing El Porto "for the hundredth day in a row" despite "everyone" else being a "kook" and despite it being "the worst wave in Southern California", making it clear: there is absolutely nowhere else to surf EVERYDAY in the Los Angeles area as reliable as El Porto (which is true, even for angry weirdos secretly videoing young male strangers undressing in the beach parking lot while shouting "these people and these waves suck!" to their Instagram audience). In posting this rather disturbing video to social media - BeachGrit reporters and Google News agree - the unnamed videographer"officially designated" El Porto... though not as the area's "Worst Wave" as the man lamented and their headlines claimed, but actually as the de facto "Most Reliable Wave In Los Angeles!" and the county's "Most Surfed Beach!"
Just 11 minutes from Los Angeles International Airport, El Porto's extremely reliable (though often less than ideal) wave attracts surfers (beginners, wannabes, and surf snobs) not just from all over southern California - but from all over the worId. All day. Everyday. By most estimates, El Porto is the most surfed beach in all of Los Angeles County making it arguably the most surfed beach in the state of California and mainland USA.
With epic surf traffic, come epic surf people... and so too come epic wave-snob whiners. Call El Porto a 'swell magnet' or a 'kook magnet' if you feel so inclined, make fun if you must, but make no mistake - El Porto is one of the most frequently surfed spots in America and the world, and (as the way some surfers are) one of the most heavily criticized - mostly for its challenging ever present close-outs, which since January of '23 have been breaking practically right on shore. Thank goodness for Beachgrit.com's reporting. Someone needs to be making fun of El Porto, or rather needs to be celebrating El Porto - celebrating it for the one-in-a-surf-spot place that it is in mainland USA, and on planet Earth. More specifically, it's good to be celebrating a surf spot whenever someone takes surfing there so seriously that they can't enjoy the gifts nature is giving them.
Surfing is about having fun and harmonizing with what nature offers. People who complain that the only surfable waves in the area just don't measure up to their high standards are 100% not fun. People who call other surfers "barneys" and "kooks" are also 100% not fun, and usually they actually suck at surfing (and/or life) and are simply pointing the finger at others hoping to make themselves look or feel superior.
Is there really a more reliable or more convenient or even more inclusive place to surf in Southern California than El Porto? Is there another place to surf "100 days in a row" as the poor vlogger above had to 'suffer'? A nearby parking lot? Friendly people of all ages, races, and backgrounds along one of America's most affluent neighborhoods? No there is not. If you find a more reliable daily surf spot, by all means, go surf there! And write or vlog about it for the rest of us - or don't. Either way, there is no good in bitching at mother nature, nor at fellow surfers. Although, there are no doubt throngs of local El Porto surfers rejoicing at the 'worst wave' headline, both in agreement that our very reliable wave does suck, and hopeful that the article may somehow thin out the crowds.
Complainers miss the entire point of surfing (and living) altogether. Rather than bemoan reality and put people down, they can always just drive 183 miles inland and pay to wait for their day at Kelly Slater's carnival ride, where they can experience "perfect" artificial waves, rather than having to harmonize with nature's real thing, however it comes. They can even pay more to use the place exclusively, and keep out all the "barneys" they want. Maybe those complainers will even "get lucky" and WSL's yet-to-be-named CEO will build them an artificial surf prison (I mean wave park) at the new WSL headquarters in nearby El Segundo - away from the beach and over by the office buildings and freeways where they can leave happy real surfers to enjoy the ocean in bliss.
As the owner of El Porto Surf Shop, I personally would like to say 'thank you' to writer Chas Smith for giving El Porto continued well-deserved attention and good humor. Earnestly and genuinely, and as a fellow writer, I appreciate his articles and books (particularly Cocaine and Surfing: A Sordid History, even though I hate cocaine as it destroys the user's body, brain, values, and soul). I am delighted over BeachGrit.com's deeply-committed coverage of El Porto's little surf beach. Whenever Chas is nearby, if he's reading this, I'd love to hang, catch some waves, burn a blunt, and toast a couple margaritas across the street at Fishbar, Pancho's, or OBs. On behalf of other El Porto surfers and residents, thanks for the coverage and the good vibes.
El Porto Surf Shop is happy to provide local surfers, crew members, and out-of-town customers to serve as "news correspondents" making similarly ridiculous social media posts for we "journalists" to cover as "news." Isn't it wonderful what modern journalism and "news" has become? (Barf!)
Please keep the El Porto articles coming! (Seriously!). There's no such things as bad publicity.
So... for all the "kooks," "barneys" and just you regular surfers out there - El Porto is home to the only surf shop in the world open 6:30am daily. El Porto Surf Shop is available for all your surf needs, inlcluding surf rentals, repairs, wetsuit rentals, and surf lessons. Located just 774 feet from El Porto Beach, we even rent fiberglass boards! (Yew!!!)
For links to just a few of BeachGrit.com's myriad El Porto related "news" articles, see below:
Surfing World's Expectations of El Porto Waves Grow To Unreachable Proportions - "Everyone... Surfs Here" According To Instagram Beard Wax Maker/ Recognized Surf Authority
Former CEO of World Surf League Learned to Surf at El Porto - Making It World's Surf Capital, Fans Rejoice
World Surf League CEO Posts IG Photos Near Pier South of El Porto, And Surfs El Porto - Making It The World's Most Important Beach Break
Amazing Skills Of Surfers At El Porto Warrant This Amazing News Article