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Puerto Escondido /// Mexico /// September 2015

Our adventure south starts in Puerto Escondido, Mexico. Along the Oaxaca coastline, Puerto is world famous for its wave. Known as the Mexican Pipeline, when Puerto is breaking, the earth can be felt shaking beneath your bare feet as you wander through town. Our project, Coast 2 Coast, innately focuses our attention on ocean conservation. However, in Puerto, we gained a new perspective for human conservation. While humans pollute the seas on a daily basis, the ocean in Puerto challenges even the most experienced waterman or woman with extreme conditions and snatching unsuspecting beachgoers from the shoreline.

Wandering the beach one evening, we watched a peculiar statue rising up from the rocks at the end of Playa Zicatela. Upon a closer look, we swallowed our hearts realizing that this statue was a memorial to all those who have lost their lives to the colossal waves of Puerto Escondido. The statue is of two hands reaching beyond the surface of the water for help.

Nico charging the perfect A-frame that is the Mexican Pipeline.

Switching from longboard to shortboard, Emi navigates La Punta at Puerto Escondido.

The lifeguards stay busy from sunrise to sunset.

Graveyard of broken surfboards outside one of Zicatela's repair shops.

The Puerto Escondido Junior Lifeguard course or “Pequeños Salvavidas” is a free program started by the lifeguard director (the son of a fishermen) for local children every weekend to learn ocean lifesaving skills and promote environmental consciousness. Coast 2 Coast interviewed lifeguards and participants. One young boy told us that he liked the lifeguards’ job because it was like being a doctor in an emergency room but at the beach.

After surf smoothies before the mid-day sun.

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