With Hurricane Marie pushing southern swells up to South Orange County, on Wednesday August 27, we got hit with some of the largest waves seen in 20 years. One of the most “affected” areas was The Wedge located at the end of the Balboa Peninsula in Newport Beach, Ca.
Already a popular spot for watermen, The Wedge is named for it’s wedged shaped waves that crash on the extremely shallow sandbar, reaching it’s best sets when a southernly swell (such as the one from Hurricane Maria) comes in.
The large waves are created from a man made change that happened in the 1930’s when the Jetty was built at the entrance of Newport Harbor. The Jetty creates a wave that bounces off the rock formation into another oncoming wave, blending together to create one huge wave.
Combine these conditions with a powerful backwash that leaves you hugging the sand to try and get out, and you have some of the most daring conditions for watermen alike; not to mention a breathtaking scene for spectators.