Spring surfing in California isn’t always the most straightforward affair.

On one hand: seventy-five-degree days are plentiful. Plus, The Pacific is just warm enough to start thinking about dusting off your board shorts. On the other hand: swell consistency is tricky at best. Winter north swells are cooling off, and the south swell engine still needs a few more minutes or months to really get going. To put it shortly, Spring is longboard season. Yes, it’s small, but the air is warm, the sky is blue, and that alone is a good enough reason to pack a cooler up with cold ones and hit the sand. 

Which is exactly what we did as we posted up at the Jack’s Surfboards Pro this weekend, and it was pretty much the best Spring weekend ever. There was great surfing, better times, and plenty of empty cans of Cerveza and 805 ready for recycling at the end of it all. In short, the perfect recipe for cookin’ up a perfect contest weekend. Now, let’s keep scrolling and get a rundown on all the details.

For those unaware of what the Jack’s Pro even is, don’t worry, we got you. All you have to do is crack open a cold one and follow along.

The Jack’s Surfboards Pro is the official kickoff for the World Surf League’s North American World Qualifying Tour season. A men’s and women’s QS 3,000, it welcomes the region’s top contenders and has grown its presence both on the sand and on the rankings. Everyone who shows up to surf here is hungry at a chance to make the WSL’s World Championship Tour. An April win in Huntington Beach doesn’t solidify your case for making the tour, but it certainly strengthens your argument. 

And because we have quite the soft spot for high-quality surfing, it was a no-brainer to hop on as a co-sponsor for it all. That, and it was being held in Huntington Beach, which is just a California “down the road” away from our base of operations on the Central Coast. They also let us set up a two-story beach bar right in front of all the action, which made things just that much more epic.

A total of 144 competitors (104 men and 40 women, if you need the specifics) showed up to scrap at the south side of the iconic Huntington Beach Pier. Opening day surf was lackluster, despite it all going down on a picturesque warm, sunny-enough Southern California Spring day. A storm rolled in the night after however, which brought a decent amount of rain but also plenty of swell. From Saturday on, the lineup was graced with peaky wind swell that delighted everyone in the water and the sand alike. Competitors got fun surf, and viewers got to enjoy both some killer views and exciting surfing, especially if they were on our elevated viewing platform at the VIP 805 Beer bar.

Speaking of our VIP Beach Beer bar, it was exactly what it sounds like: the chillest place to catch at the comp. If you were over 21 and wanted either some sweet 805 Beer merch or just a cold beer to hold while you watched some hot surfing, we were the place to be. Servin’ up both 805 Originals and Cervezas to everyone with an empty hand and hefty thirst just steps from the water’s edge, we saw plenty of foot traffic over the long weekend. Spectators, coaches, and competitors alike turned up to get in on the action and we had a great crew both manning the bar and making the most of it. 

And since we’re chatting about competitors, let’s talk about the actual surfing! We’ll save you the 10,000-plus words on the exact heat-by-heat breakdown, especially because you can replay it all here on the WSL’s website. But standouts included local heroes like Kolohe Andino and Brett Simpson, but plenty of others showed up with a mission to put up some scores. Two athletes in particular, Nolan Rapoza and Kirra Pinkerton certainly turned our heads, and that’s maybe because they rocked up to the beach with some 805 Beer stickers on their boards (more on that here soon). 

Nolan made it as far as the Round of 16, where eventual contest champion Lucca Mesinas just edged him out. Kirra however couldn’t have crushed it harder, literally. She ended up winning the whole thing for the ladies. Her final heat against runner-up Zoe Benedetto was a scorcher, with both girls trading off waves and scores, with Kirra’s final 9.83 eventually ruling over Zoe’s 8.00. At the final horn, we cheered, Kirra was carried up the beach with a bucket of 805s waiting for her on the sand, and then we all celebrated with it al back at the beach bar.

All in all, it was an incredible event and a rad time. Thank you to the WSL, Jack’s Surfboards, and everyone else who let us tag along. We were happy we kept everyone hydrated, and we can’t wait to run it all back in Huntington Beach at the US Open of Surfing this summer.  

And a massive cheers to Nolan and Kirra as well! We couldn’t have dreamed up a better welcoming to the 805 Beer team than what went down over the Jack’s Pro. Crack open a cold one and keep the celebrations going, you’ve both earned it.