Through the soup of the morning marine layer, a steady surge of south swell could be heard. The odd Egret pecked at frogs in the marsh, their silent hunting only broken by the occasional clatter of a fighter jet landing in the distance. Nothing but seals and pelicans occupied the lineup, and with expansive wetlands to our backs, it felt like we were truly alone. Alas, we were not. Quite the contrary actually: We were being watched, by unseen men, via their radars, cameras, and a plethora of other devices. But we were not there to be mischievous, for the Pacific was our focus.
As we gazed over the dark sea and misty horizon, a omnious lump of water rose from nowhere. It approached "The Horn", a sandy hook at the end of our little beach, and detonated into dry sand, barreling perfectly both ways. We were out there. Dane was first in the water. He danced with the explosive rights that heaved unforgivingly onto dry sand. Lumpy lefts would make an appearance every half hour, breaking the cold and lonely south swell lulls. Dane would navigate the disheveled lines down the beach until the right section appeared for his backside attack. trading waves with local Nick Rosza, the two surfers weaved in and out of the fog, milking the strange beach break for all it could offer.
After the first session was over, we dined by ourselves in the one and only commissary. Horrible Mexican food was served, swimming in Tapitio sauce, while Sean Hannity blared from a television in the kitchen. But that was okay, we weren't there for the food. The odd jughead would wander by outside, oblivious to how amazing this oasis was comparative to the rest of California on the small south swell. We wandered back to the beach, and found the same surf we had left, with a slight air wind and the sun beginning to show. Back out there for more surfing. With the appearance of the sun, a small crowd of casual surfers had formed in the water, drifting aimlessly between phantom peaks and rip currents. Dane sat off the horn, lonely and cold, but catching the best waves California could offer that day. Surfing into the late afternoon, we then packed up and departed as quietly as we came. The Horn was alone again. - Morgan Maassen
, from Naval Base Ventura County, Point Mugu
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