Cale Moore (Surge)

UPDATED: Video added by Kellen Keene. Enjoy!

When we received a cd jam packed with quality goods from Cale Moore’s Nicaragua expedition last summer we realized that an interview was long overdue. Hell, to be honest, aside from the abundance of plaid attire, Budweiser tall cans, his red Nissan mainstay and The Pig, we didn’t even know much about this reserved north county dk freak ourselves until quite recently.

We went through our teeming photo archives to search out a single headshot when we first started to piece together this interview. Certainly there’d be a closely cropped shot of his mug to mix in with the action photos, right? Wrong. But that’s just Cale – hardly imposing out of the water: mild mannered, humble, softspoken, and too often going unnoticed. (Fittingly, every photo that we did find of him he was offcenter, out of focus, and cruising with an alcoholic sidekick in hand). Rest assured the same can’t be said for his riding in the water and that’s why we’re here. You just can’t sweep this much talent under the rug. Ladies and gents, the Cale Moore interview.

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(Editor’s Note: This article also appears in Surge Magazine v1.0. Thanks to Josh Shelly and Alex Statom for editing some of the photos.)

Hailing from Los Osos, Cale was always on the other end of the SLO county bodyboarding spectrum. His cool, calm, and collected demeanor represented a stark contrast from the rather loud, obnoxious, and vulgar Pismo spongers to the south. An isolated bodyboarder living in a small, standup-dominated community, Cale not only acted differently, but also rode waves differently than his south county counterparts. To keep up with the fast and hollow reefs that abound in his neck of the woods and to evade the scrutiny of the hardened locals, Cale took notes from the areas’ fiberheads that he often shared the lineup with. Thus his dropknee approach evolved through the years into a case study on pure, down the line speed. The cruisy, lazy dk stance that overruns most friendly Cali beachies won’t fly here. Pumping down the line with a narrow stance and a poised forward lean, Cale has earned every inch of open face real estate that he’s carved up in his backyard.

Sightings of Cale were quite rare at first for us Pismo folk. A Toobs factory passing here. A random North County spot check there. Few words exchanged and even fewer waves shared. Eventually the random encounters became more frequent though as our collective local wave knowledge coalesced over time. As we became more dialed in on the areas’ waves, we found ourselves zeroing in on the same collection of boogie breaks. Soon the signature red Nissan became an all too familiar sight tucked off the side of Highway One. A few surfs was all it took for us to comprehend the talent that had been veiled beneath that thick Los Osos fog for so long. The kid was a natural and his rather concealed personality made him an all the more intriguing addition for our boisterous clan.

Extending an invite to Cale for a trip to Mainland Mexico in the summer of 2007 was the next logical step in the progression of our friendship. He eagerly signed himself up, although probably not fully aware of the extent of his actions. A whirlwind initiation ensued, culminating in a classic segment in Kellen and Zach’s flick The Dawn.

Now three years and numerous trips removed and Pismo has yet to rub off much on Cale. To this day he still often opts to patrol the coast solo in his new rig, staying clear of the more popular and accessible beaches in his domain and to the south. Media and exposure give him only mild amusement. The kid seems more content on exploring and experiencing the intricate local coastline than bagging clips and pics. This is why outside of the Central Coast, Cale still remains a bit of an enigma to the rest of the bodyboarding community. We figured we’d give the quiet kid from Los Osos his due, and educate outsiders on this gifted waverider.

 


Photo: Brett Roldan

 


Photo: Wes Broshears

 

Cale, let the readers familiarize themselves with you – age, residence, and how you started on the boog?

I’m 25 years old. I was born in Huntington Beach before moving to Los Osos when I was a baby. My Parents were your average southern California beach bums, so they naturally raised me and my 3 brothers at the beach. I got my first Toobs Bodyboard in 1988, when I was 4 and have been loving it ever since.

 


Photo: Kellen Keene

 


Photo: Nick Statom

 

How was it growing up in the small community of Los Osos? How strong was the standup influence and how did it affect your style of riding?

Growing up in Los Osos was probably the same as growing up in any small town; you had to make your own fun. Luckily for me there were a handful of surf spots a short distance away and I had an older brother to drive me to them.

The catch about the surf spots in my backyard was that they were dominated by stand-up surfers who had a hard time wrapping their mind around why anyone would want to ride a bodyboard. The only reason that I didn’t start riding a surfboard was because my older brother Ryan rode a bodyboard. Other than Ryan and Marcos from Toobs, there were very few bodyboarders that I consistently rode waves with. Because of this, I had no option other than watching how the local surfers rode waves, so I took from them what I could apply to dropknee.

 


Photo: Wes Broshears

 


Photo: Kellen Keene

 

Plain and simple you put some of the most miles on your rig of anyone that I know while searching out spots. This can bring about great rewards but even greater frustrations. Generally speaking what is it like living on the Central Coast as a bodyboarder and what are your favorite and least favorite times of the year along this length of coastline?

Since I first got my drivers license I had an obsession with finding good waves and an empty line-up. I would hear stories about perfect waves to the north but was never given directions. This led to trying to scour every inch of coastline from Ragged Point to my hometown in all types of conditions. It took a long time to figure out where the legitimate spots were. This stretch of coastline could be the most frustrating place in the world because even when the reports are good it will still spite you half the time. On the other hand, when everything comes together, the line-ups are empty and it all becomes worthwhile.

It seems that there are only a few months out of the year that produce good waves along the Central Coast. In the spring I’ll spend more time doing other hobbies away from the ocean, due to relentless onshore winds and upwelling that make bad waves extra cold and miserable. The summer brings fog that makes me lose my mind. In fall and winter I try to work less so I can be on it when it’s good. Being a bodyboarder along the Central Coast is great as long as you have other interests when the waves are bad.

 


Photo: Brett Roldan

 


Photo: Nick Statom

 

In the summer of 2007 you finally got a proper Pismo introduction down in mainland Mexico. Did it go as you might have expected or did your perception change regarding either Pismo or Mexico?

Before meeting up with that group in Mexico (for my first real surf trip), I already new that they were pretty much fearless in the water, so I had to prepare myself to step it up. What I didn’t know was what can happen when the waves are flat. They really opened my eyes as to what was possible on the dance floor and how much tequila could be consumed in a week. My perception changed on both Mexico and Pismo and it was a life changing trip.

 


Photo: Chris Burkard

 


Photo: Chris Burkard

 

You juggle jobs for the Morro Bay Harbor Patrol, as a Morro Bay lifeguard supervisor, and as a commercial fisherman. You ever see any crazy shit while on the job? How do you find the time to surf?

I really just can’t get enough of the ocean. As far as crazy shit I have seen a car crash and a boat crash on the same beach. My line of work has shown me how stupid some people can be. I’ve been commercial fishing with my dad since I can remember. Working in such an uncontrolled environment makes every trip seem crazy. I have seen many sea creatures.

Like many people with the surf bug, you know you need to have a flexible schedule to get the waves at their best. The only time I work full time is in the summer lifeguarding. Even then I try to have a backup just in case the waves are too good to miss. The reality of a full time job is getting closer and I’ll have to take what I can get for waves then, but that also means more money for planned surf trips.

 

Photo: Kellen Keene

 


Photo: Wes Broshears

 

How long were you in Nicaragua last summer and how did the waves there suit dropknee? Besides the waves, what was your favorite part about Nicaragua?

I was in Nicaragua for just over 2 weeks last fall. I was planning to go to Mexico but due to some issues renting a car I decided to try something new. I didn’t know much about Nicaragua at the time, only that you could post up in one place and have easy access to multiple waves. The waves were small most of the trip, but when the swell picked up it was a dropknee wonderland with perfectly groomed head high waves. You could walk one way and get bowly lefts or go the other and have a perfect right sandbar all to yourself.

Even though there were scorpions and wasps inhabiting my room and a random sketchy guy with a sawed off shotgun nearby, I really enjoyed how people lived there. The locals still used Ox driven carts and rode around on horses. It was kinda like the wild west. Even with the flat spells I thought it was paradise and will definitely go back one day.

 


Photos: Nick Statom

 


Photo: Wes Broshears

 

You have been sending us some sick photos lately both in front of and behind the lens. How did you become involved with photography and where do you plan to take it? What other non-surfing activities are you interested in?

I bought my first camera (a Canon Rebel XT) about 5 years ago because I thought it would be a good hobby and I always found myself in situations where I wish I had a camera. Since then I taught myself how to use my camera, figuring it out as I went. I bought a Buzztech water housing that I have been experimenting with and I am stoked on some off the pictures that I took. I recently started making frames out of plywood and am planning on making a collection of my best pictures so I can do an art show or something. Other than bodyboarding and shooting photos I also skateboard a lot in the spring and ride my longboard and hike in the summer.

 


Photo: Cody Ages

 


Photos: Steve Milner

 

Any future trips in the works? What are your plans for the next couple years?

With bad waves and cold water most of the year I am always planning on shedding my wetsuit and getting some warm water barrels. Kellen Keene and I have some plans in the works by the name of Project X, it involves purchased land in a foreign country and a real long drive in my old pick-up. I have also been building an 18′ Boston Whaler hull from the deck up so I’ll have a nice boat to get to all the places that are inaccessible from land. As far as the next few years go, I plan on kicking around on my boogie and living happily.

 

Photo: Nick Statom

 


Photos: Betsy Ball

 


Photos: Ryan Moore, Wes Broshears, Wes Broshears

 


Photos: Steve Moore

 


Photos: Wes Broshears

 


Photos: Aaron Jackson, Aaron Jackson, Nick Statom

 


Photos: Nick Statom

 

etcetera de mexico

Now almost a year past, here are some final pics from last September’s Mexico expedition. This should be enough eye candy to get you pumped for your upcoming summer adventures.

Camel’s second set of eyelids sure came in handy.


Before the knee popped, Louie was feeling no pain.


Two shady options to choose from.


Wonka poised and ready to pounce.


That ski in the corner could mean that there’s one very lucky Hop-Up-Harry deep inside that dark green pit.


Somebody order a pizza?


Rummy & Modelo afternoon interlude.


Willie helicoptering through a clean green machine.


Braving the midday heat offered great rewards.


The water temps may differ between SF and Mex, but the barrel stays the same. Camel knowing right where to be.


Table for two, anyone?


Richerson standing tall in the morning light.


Local grom in an envious situation.


Robles stylin’ under the curtain.


A little patience can go a long way at this Mexican beachbreak.


Not a bad place to be. Wonka setting up.


The half-thumb made him do it.


Alex punching through a frothy end section.


The man, the myth, and our ride to Glass. Edgar.


Another empty churning down the line.


Down syndrome elephant seal pup stretching one out on the knee.


Willie bringing the energy.

Rummy Nights, Groundhog Daze – Mexico 2009

The Wave by Louie Robles
Our first look at the ocean was almost hypnotic after our long travels. But that was nothing compared to what we were to wake up to the next day, “perfecto” DOH uncrowded vomiting monsters. I mean…the thickest chunkiest projectile vomits with literally not one person out. I think Wonka was the first one to get in the water. After watching him battle a furious current we knew where not to paddle out. Everyone was getting sick ones. Alex was just blasting through barrels like a camel, Wonka was dropping in to monsters like a pelican, baby seal was doing what baby seals do and suicide Joe, just…the name says it all.

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The Crew by Joe Statom
Waiting in line at LAX, I’m starting to get amped for Mexico. Not only because of the swell forecast, but also because of the crew that we had assembled for the trip. I see three guys walk into the airport with huge, overstuffed board bags on their backs. Louie, Willie, and Frankie: DKers straight from the dropknee hotbed of Pismo Beach. Yes! The time is approaching! Me and the other two brothers Camel were also in on the action. Here’s a quick rundown of the crew:

Louie “Salt-tooth” Robles was ripping the first couple days of the trip until a set wave lipped him and a knee injury forced him into permanent cameraman duties. His habit of putting salt on everything he ate was very influential upon the whole group. I now have become addicted to salt-covered ice cubes.

Willie “Perfecto” Richerson’s fluent Spanish and apt use of the word “perfecto” whenever possible saved us many times from almost certain death. His early win streak in our nightly rummy games led to marked cards and extremely high tension. He also recently earned his second straight photo atop the rookiesusa home page which is no small feat.

Frank “Down Syndrome Stretchy Pants Elephant Seal Baby” Robles is quickly earning a reputation as the newest edition to the Pismo Dropknee Parthenon. Although his Spanish skills won’t be turning any heads, his bodyboarding skills will.

Alex “Robot-Foot” Statom’s feet began amassing duct tape, puss, and pepperonis at such an alarming rate that by the end of the trip, there were many who weren’t entirely sure if he was human or a cyborg sent from the future to kill us all. He also scored more barrels than anyone not named Harry Hop-Up Henderson.

Nick “College Kid” Statom had to fly in a couple days later than the rest of us after about a month of hanging with notorious Rookie James Murdock and doing research for Scripps in Hawaii. Even though he claimed to be rusty after his surf hiatus, it was clear that he was still at the top of his game.

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The Deck by Alex Statom

Upon exiting the airplane we were blasted with a wall of tropical heat and humidity that immediately put all sweat glands on overdrive. Luckily the acclimation only took a few hours and by the time we reached our final destination we had embraced the salt and grease that would steadily accumulate throughout the trip. Soon the filth was looked upon as a badge of honor. Showers were looked at in disdain, shaving was blasphemy, and putting on a new tee was cause for insult and mockery.

Our home base was all you could ask for on a Mexico trip. All frivolous luxuries were washed away and we were left with the bare essentials of surf travel. No TV, no fridge, 3 worn mattresses, and a sketchy shower/shitter combo were all just afterthoughts to the main attraction: a big second story deck with some old lawn furniture and the best view $40 dollars a night can buy. For the second consecutive trip we had scored the best room around with a 180 degree view of the offshore spitting peaks just a hundred yards away. After finishing a surf it was the perfect place to come in and claim your best barrels, describe your worst thrashings, cackle at each others blown waves, or heckle the Stepoff Stans outrunning barrels in the distance. And once the afternoon surf session and dinner scrappage were complete, the deck transformed into the home for our evening entertainment. Frank brought a mini speaker system for his iPod and it provided a classic rock soundtrack to our increasingly intense rummy games. Corona megas were slammed into our bellies and occasionally onto the ground. Tensions mounted as Willie’s win streak continued and his inflated ego chaffed at ol’ Lou’s hide. Luckily, confrontation was avoided as Willie hit a well-timed cold streak and his relentless heckling finally came to an end.

Sure the surf was insane, the adventures into town and up into the mountains were fun, and our big night out at Club Glass was literally a blur. But for me the deck was the essence of this trip. With your cards in one hand and your Mega in the other, spitting sunflower seeds on the ground while talking trash to the other shady characters around the table as perfect beachbreak tubes crashed in the dark just a stones throw away… you can’t ask for much more from a Mex trip.

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The Culture by Willie Richerson

The Drunken Troubadour
Everyone on the bus sat silent, waiting for him to get up or at least move. Louie, Frank and I wondered if the drunken old man had died as he fell into the aisle, his head contacting metal with a loud crack. He had sung a heartfelt song at our breakfast table just minutes before. We had tipped him enough to get a bottle of coke to accompany his tequila. Did we really hear his final song?

Slowly his legs stretched out and two men helped him to his feet. He mumbled something as thanks and immediately he began strumming his guitar and belting out the same song he had played for us earlier. A great recovery, but not a single person tipped him and he stumbled off the bus into the scorching mid-day sun.

The Biting Fish
The local bus station dumps you straight into the central market where you can get an epic meal for under two bucks, some sweet new clothes, or a big raw chunk of beef or pork, unrefrigerated.

One afternoon we took three separate buses, past the giant cement factory, to a natural spring called Los Amiales. The water was clean and clear, and felt great in the mid-afternoon heat. All of the sudden Alex let out a girly shriek when something began biting at his ankles. The round wounds from his fins looked like small pepperoni, an inviting snack for the small hungry fish.

Besides the surf, riding the public buses, windows wide open, catching glimpses of the simple lifestyle enjoyed by these smiling people, makes any trip to Mexico feel like a true vacation.

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The Nightlife by Nick Statom
Well, there was the weekly Tuesday techno bizarro bonfire with the world’s best vegan ski teams getting extra enthused about their tow partners just a stones throw from our suite balcony. But we resisted the urge to partake despite persistent growls from the Gremlin. Instead we opted for plan B: surf our brains out all week while keeping it mellow during after hours in hopes of an XXL night on the town come Friday.

That’s not to say that the simple pleasuries of dinner at Tsunami followed by Corona Megas, fistfuls of sunflower seeds, and roust-fueled rummy games was a depriving affair in the interim. In fact, this option became a rather welcome routine throughout our stay and five simple ground rules became readily apparent after the first night: (1) DO NOT drop your Mega, (2) DO NOT leave an oversized discard pile for Willie to pick up, (3) Roust the fuck out of Willie if he picks up said pile, (4) Wear bug spray – lots of it, and (5) Keep the iPod jams rolling at all times. Such refreshingly simple forms of entertainment were not a bad way to break up the long, humid nights and relax while recounting another days’ pumping surf with five of your closest amigos.

When Friday did finally come we did not forget. Transportation plans to our nighttime destination of Glass were made days in advance. Megas and bottles of Jimador were purchased. Appropriate clothing for the club was tracked down. Local girls were enlisted. Pepperonis were concealed. We were ready, Freddy Got Fingered style.

The two hour transit huddled in the bed of Edgar’s truck wouldn’t kill our buzz. Neither would the tropical deluge that struck around the halfway point. Nope, a week’s worth of buildup and a potent Squirt/Jimador combo carried us onward, and carried us directly to the doorstep of Glass in a drenched, dazed Pismo heap.

Unfortunately the insides of Glass didn’t quite live up to our collective hype. There was no dancefloor, a crowd that was a little too posh for our filthy third world expectations, a cover and pricey bottle service. But we had turned that corner long ago and went right to work nonetheless.

Alex peaked way too early and we propped him up on various pieces of lounge furniture a la Weekend at Bernie’s to avoid getting 86’d. Joe didn’t need any propping to find himself double fisting local scenery with his suicidal tendencies. Louie wasted no time in establishing a pseudo dance floor within our own growing entourage with some spectacularly unexpected Grover City house party moves. Willie delighted and charmed the locals with his perfecto Spanish; Frank’s lack thereof made for some classic one liners. Frothing in unbeknown territory, the Pismo sum outweighed the individuals on hand as we fed off the distinct personalities of our posse and let loose until the wee hours.

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The Food by Frank Robles
The grub in Mexico was too legit to quit to say the least. Eggs and bacon for breakfast, tortas for lunch, then topping it off with chicken tacos for dinner I meeeean fuuuck it was heaven. There would be multiple smoothies taken down each day by the crew which now have taken a special place in my heart.

Fortunately no sorry soul was struck with the crypto creep on the trip, just some pretty heavy morning tequila shits after a couple long nights of getting weird. There was one particular night that the crew took a big roll of the dice by taking down some pretty sketchy tacos on the way back from Colima. I thought for sure one of us was going to be wounded in the morning after those tacos but our shit stayed solid. Mexico was insane so many memories and good times, I am sure we will all be going back soon for round two.

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An Australian Postcard

Hey Rookiesusa.com,

So I just got back about a week ago from an amazing 18 day trip to Australia and I already can’t wait to go back. About 3 months ago my friend David Schaub and I decided to go to Australia. We made the 14 hour journey over on the 22nd of May with no directions and no idea of where to find spots or what kind of swell to look for. We landed on the 24th and picked up our horrid, purple-flowered, thief magnet of a van after being told by the company owner that there was a 70% chance of break-in or collision. We took our chances anyway and headed straight away southbound from Sydney in search of waves. After two days of searching and driving we found boogie heaven. Nobody out and 4-6 foot. We surfed the spot for three days straight after randomly meeting up with fellow mainlanders Matt Meyer, Nick Ostrovsky, and Randy Holzmann. We also met some local groms named Riley Conlon, age 20, and Ryan Sewell, age 15. They were just two of the many rippers around the area.

After three days the swell started dying and the rain set in so we headed back north. We checked around three other cities but didn’t find much of anything, the swell just wasn’t big enough. For the next few days we surfed a mellow beach break, went wine tasting, attended a Riptide video premiere, bargain hunted and found shelter from the rain. We finally had enough of the town life and headed back south to our original stomping grounds. For the next two days we surfed perfect waves, 4-7 foot and light crowds. If California ever looked like a typical day here there would be 500 guys on it. We spent all day surfing about a mile away from the nearest car, building fires, crapping in the woods and staving off the incessant rain. David, Matt, Nick and Randy all scored a super session in the late afternoon with nobody out. Probably saw more airs that one day than I have all of my life back in California. The next few days just poured down rain all day, so we headed back to the nearest town. We all split up and David and I were really blessed when a random family took us in for two days while it pissed down rain. They took us out to dinner for pizza, made us beds in a fire heated room and cooked us meals. They also took us out to pet wild kangaroos.

Eventually the skies finally parted and somehow we all met back up again and headed back to the same spot as before. We got back to find it smaller than it had been with Dave Winchester and Spencer Skipper riding it. All I can really say is Dave Winchester is insane in person; he was boosting the biggest and most perfect airs on every wave. It was amazing, simply amazing. We ended up staying there until our last two days of the trip before heading back to Sydney. Overall we had an epic adventure, although we didn’t surf many different waves and continuously got rained out. In fact our only two days of nothing but sun were in Sydney, but in the end it was completely worth all the hassle. I highly recommend that all bodyboarders make the trek over at least once in their life as it is nothing but a boogie paradise. So now I am back in California, back to my 60 hour week and already planning my next trip. Until next time be sure to check out Allen-Photos.com for all the goods.

Cheers,

Chris Allen

Allen-Photos.com

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David 30 minutes into his first session.

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Ryan Sewel age 15.

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Matt going huge in the early morning light.

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Randy nailed about three of these back to back to back.

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Ostrovsky striking the Iron Man pose.

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Taming the local wildlife.

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Dave Winchester full rotation. Nuts.

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End bowl forward by Spencer Skipper.

Spacey North Shore Murdock Video Support

Back in January of 2009 the Central Coast’s own Brett Roldan landed on the Rock thanks to a very generous donation from his gf. Unfortunately for Roldan, he suffered a season-ending foot injury just prior to departure on a Black Joe’s inside dumper. But the trip would not be completely fruitless. With some of the best swells of the season on tap during his tenure, 662 rolled out their camera and let Reddy work his magic behind the lens. Cracking tall cans and working the zoom on the HD setup seemed almost natural for “Spacey”, a name that shook loose and has stuck indefinitely after a big night out with Andre Botha and Anthony Savoji. Below is some of the evidence with Murdock as the subject. Check DreBoy.com for further footy.