Mavericks Watch: Northern California’s Big-Wave Surfing Contest Could Happen Next Week

The popular big-wave surfing contest held every year at Mavericks is currently on watch, as organizers keep an eye on the forecasts to determine if the contest could take place next week. Organizers indicated the contest could take place between December 18-20.

If held next week, it would be the first time the competition took place in December. Contest competitors are currently on call and an announcement is expected in the coming days. 

Mavericks is the world-renown surfing spot located in Half Moon Bay, just south of San Francisco off of Highway 1. After strong winter storms in the Pacific Ocean, the location can see waves anywhere between 25 and 60 feet. It is a very dangerous spot for surfers, known to have taken the lives of famous surfers Mark Foo and Sion Milosky.

Surfline, the official wave forecaster for the competition, projects the waves could grow as large as 40 to 65 feet next week, conditions that could make for a monumental contest. Surfline called it “the kind of swell we only see around three times a decade.”

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The swell before The swell #Mavericks

A post shared by Aerial DP Jamy Donaldson (@jamy_donaldson_air) on

Last season, event organizers had their eyes on the swell during January to hold the contest, but poor conditions prevailed and the contest was not held at all. This season’s event window lasts from November 1 through March 31.

The Mavericks Challenge has a prize purse of $130,000 and will include 24 men and 10 women. Spectators won’t be allowed on the beach or bluffs above the break during the event. The contest will be available on a webcast at worldsurfleague.com

To give you an idea of just what Mavericks has to offer, check out this video:

For more information on the Mavericks Challenge, go here.

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