Old Orchard Beach, often affectionately referred to as “OOB,” is a charming beach town located in the beautiful state of Maine. Known for its sandy shores, historic pier, and lively amusement areas, it’s also an under-the-radar spot for surfers.
If you’re considering taking your board and hitting the waves at OOB, this guide is for you.
Why Old Orchard Beach?
- Variety of Waves: Whether you’re a seasoned pro or just starting out, OOB has a range of waves that cater to all levels.
- Scenic Beauty: Surfing with a backdrop of a 7-mile long beach and New England charm? It’s a unique experience.
- Warm Community: The local surfing community at OOB is welcoming. They’re supportive of newcomers and foster a sense of camaraderie in the water.
Preparing for Your Surf
Before you dive into the waves, ensure that your equipment is in order. If you’re traveling without your gear, there are several surf shops in and around OOB where you can rent or purchase everything you need. From wetsuits to boards tailored for the local waves, they’ve got you covered.
Check the surf report for OOB before heading out. Websites like Surfline or Magic Seaweed provide detailed forecasts. You’ll want to know the wave height, tide timings, and wind conditions.
Always prioritize safety. If you’re new to the area, consider taking a lesson from local instructors. They can familiarize you with the local breaks and currents.
Best Times to Surf
OOB is not a tropical destination, so timing matters. The best surfing season typically spans from late spring to early fall. The water can be chilly, so a good wetsuit is a must, especially outside the peak summer months.
Respecting the Locals
Every surf spot has its own set of unwritten rules. Here’s how you can ensure a harmonious experience:
- Wait Your Turn: Just like any queue, wait your turn to ride a wave.
- Apologize for Mistakes: If you accidentally cut someone off, a simple apology goes a long way.
- Lend a Hand: If someone seems to be in trouble or has lost their board, offer assistance.
After the Surf
Once you’ve wrapped up your session, OOB offers a plethora of options to relax and refuel. From cozy cafes to seafood joints, there’s something for every palate. Remember to hydrate and share your surf stories with fellow enthusiasts!
Q1: I’m a beginner. Is OOB suitable for me?
Yes! OOB has spots that are perfect for beginners. However, as with any new location, consider taking a lesson or two to understand the local conditions better.
Q2: Can I rent equipment at Old Orchard Beach?
Absolutely. There are several surf shops that offer board, wetsuit, and accessory rentals.
Q3: Is surfing at OOB safe?
Yes, but like any water sport, there are inherent risks. Always be aware of the conditions, surf within your limits, and be vigilant about your safety and that of others.
Q4: What other activities can I do in OOB?
Apart from surfing, you can explore the historic pier, visit the amusement park, indulge in local seafood, or simply relax on the sandy shores.
Q5: Are there any surfing competitions at OOB?
Yes, there are occasional surf competitions and events. Check local listings or surf shop bulletin boards for details.
Surfing at Old Orchard Beach is more than just a sport; it’s an experience, blending the thrills of riding waves with the serenity of Maine’s coastline. Pack your board, respect the locals, and ride those waves!