Surfing point breaks is one of the most sought-after experiences in surfing. Endless peeling sections and consistent stacked lines are the two phenomenons that make point breaks every waterman’s paradise.
Fortunately, if you are lucky enough to be a local of coastal California, you have access to some of the best point breaks surfing has to offer. Although equally epic in their own way, every point break on this list is different and comes with its own unique crowd. The Surf Channel presents the Top Ten Point Breaks in California.
Trestles – San Clemente
One of the crown jewels of Southern California, Trestles is actually a total of five surf spots that stretch along the beach in San Clemente and they are known as: Cottons, Uppers, Middles, Lowers, and Church. Lowers is a rippable, flashy, high-performance wave and home to an ASP World Tour event. Overall Trestles is one of the most popular surf spots in the world with a definite crowd no matter the swell size. Competition is stiff too, so if you visit, be sure to bring your A-game.
Rincon – Santa Barbara
When I think of Rincon my legs start to cramp. Rincon is the essential definition of the term point break. Popularized by the Beach Boys, the “Queen of the Coast” gets its name because it is royalty in terms of surf heritage. Surfing Rincon is a unique experience, it is an incredible force of nature on a big westerly swell. When conditions are right, it generates huge wall-like faces and barrels so clean that there’s not a drop of water out of place. Really the only problem with Rincon is that it takes large winter swells to really get going. When you visit, be prepared with some serious leg strength, as it might be one of the longest waves you ride in your life.
Steamer Lane – Santa Cruz
Notorious for its cold and rugged waters, as well as its equally cold and rugged surfers, Steamer Lane is the most iconic wave in Santa Cruz, California. The waves here can get heavy, REALLY heavy. In fact, many of Mavericks’ chargers were groomed in the waters at Steamers lane. This point break made the list for two reasons: variety and consistency. Its big-open faces, heavy-open barrels, punchy-aerial lips, and tight-ramping pockets year-round make this spot one of the best.