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Dawn Patrol:

Alternative wave riding a bright spot

May 06, 2010

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about all the different ways people are riding waves, from body surfing to tow-in boards, and I misspoke when I said that kneeboarding had disappeared long ago.

I was thinking of the George-Greenough-era-type boards with foam rails and all glass bottom that The Greek and some others made as well during the early 70s. Local kneeboarder and inventor Randall Stockstill put me in the picture. I learned there is a group of avid kneeboarders that is very much alive and well. When I looked at the pictures he sent me I realized I’d seen the modern kneeboards before but mistook them for really short surfboards.

They’re rocket shaped with a wider than normal tail. Randy told me the KUSA recently held a major contest in Huntington Beach. His company, Stonefish Skegs offers specialized, uniquely shaped fins for high-performance tube riding along with others products.

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I’ll keep you posted as I learn about state-of-the-art kneeboarding and Randy’s fins.

I got onto this topic of alternative wave riding when I stumbled upon some world-class skimboarders in South Laguna doing amazing things I’d never seen before. That epic session, spring and the south swells ramping up remind me of some of the great sessions I’ve had body surfing and body boarding, and a conversation I had this winter with my friend John Wilson, a Corona del Mar native who’s still an avid body surfer.

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