The pier in Pismo Beach is one of my favourites. Why? Because it is still nothing but a pier.
If you ever visited the piers in Santa Monica, Santa Barbara or Pier 39 in San Francisco you know what I mean. Especially the later is like Disney world put on a boardwalk. Everything is there from a Hardrock Cafe to a Lefty’s shop. There is a carousel and the restaurants scream tourist trap. A place best to be avoided.
This pier is different. There is a small shop but it only sells cheap plastic necklaces and sharks. You can also buy a cold drink and rent a fishing rod. No need for a fishing licence – the ocean is all yours.
But I was not there to catch fish. I came here again to get some nice surfer shots. Two years before I photographed surfers at Oceanside already with an all Fuji X gear. I shot the X-T1 with the XC 50-230 OIS. Despite the not so fast X-T1 and the cheap and super slow tele zoom I got some very nice shots. Back then I was still on slow SD cards so clearing the puffer took forever.
Now I was back with the much faster X Pro-2, fast SD cards and the slightly faster XF 55-200 OIS. What could go wrong? Well everything. There were no good waves and as a consequence the surfers were sitting on the boards most of the time.
Conclusion: The best equipment doesn’t help if the conditions are bad. No waves, no good light or a boring scenery. Sometimes the only thing you can do is to pack your camera away, get some ice cream and enjoy life.