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Stingrays! Good-Bad-Neutral?

Stingrays! Bad or Good?

If you’re unsure about your stance on stingrays, we don’t blame you. They’re often portrayed as deadly, cold-blooded creatures who wield their venomous tails like a weapon. They’re also 99% of the time not hurtful or mean creatures. The best way to form an opinion is by learning a little more about the stingray.

When people see stingrays in the water the first reaction people make is get me out of the water! But they usually act kind and gentle around humans. Its only when a stingray feels threatened that beach-goers have to worry. Most of the stingray attacks in California happen when a human swims above or in front of them, either creating no escape route for the stingray or they accidentally step on them. Of course any animal that is cornered or scared can be dangerous, just as a stray dog can be dangerous if backed into a corner.

Trying to learn how to surf Private Surf Lessons

The stingrays do not want to eat or hurt you!

The diet of these creatures consists of small animals that live in the sand – mostly shellfish, small worms. The stingray feeds by hovering directly over the sand and fluttering the wing-like edges of its body disc to clear away the top level of sand. This exposes the little creatures that live just under the sand, and the stingray plops on top of them and eats them.


How to Avoid Stingray Attacks

Stingray Attacks  are more likely to happen to swimmers or surfers who are entering or exiting the ocean through shallow water and accidentally step on a stingray.

Naturally, the stingray will react. When the stingray is stepped on, it quickly whips its long tail forward and down, which jabs the stinger at the base of the tail into usually the foot or leg of the person. This is a defensive maneuver designed to remove the beachgoers foot from the stingray’s body, and it works. To avoid stepping on top of a stingray, beachgoers can shuffle their feet when entering and exiting the water. We call this the stingray shuffle! The Stingray Shuffle is simply sliding your feet along the sand instead of taking big steps. To a stingray, these sliding movements feel more like vibrations, which scares them away. If you take big long steps the stingray will not feel these vibrations and will stay put until you step on their backs, which most the time ends up in getting stung. Here is a video that will show you how to stingray shuffle. Go watch this video that demonstrates how to do the stingray shuffle and what to do if stung https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9a6QRcSBQec

ray shuffle

How to Treat an Injury

Treating stingray wounds requires submerging the affected area in water as hot as the individual can stand, around 110 degrees. If parts of the barb are not lodged into the wound, this type of treatment can easily be done at home instead of the doctor’s office; however, it’s important to note, if the barb is deeply lodged into the skin and/or the area does not seem to be healing, a trip to the emergency room and some antibiotics are in order. Carefully remove any surface debris from the wound with tweezers and continue to soak the area in hot water until the

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Why You Shouldnt Buy A Costco Surf Board

Summer is approaching soon!

So it’s almost that time of year to soak up the sun, hit the beach, and learn how to surf! A perfect spot to learn how to surf in Southern California is Bolsa Chica State Beach in Huntington Beach, also known as Surf City USA. Instead of running out to grab a soft-top surfboard from your nearest Costco, it’s best to take a lesson from the pros first!

Bolsa Chica State Beach is time and time again mentioned as one of the best places to learn how to surf in Southern California. That’s why Corky Carroll’s Surf School chose to teach surfing at this location and was the first surf school to ever open at Bolsa Chica State Beach! It’s a much safer decision to take a surfing lesson rather than purchase a Wavestorm soft-top from Costco with no previous experience.

Check out why Bolsa Chica is the best place to learn how to surf! Bolsa Chica State Beach

The benefits of taking a lesson first:

Surfing can be dangerous without proper instruction and lack of ocean knowledge. That’s why Corky Carroll’s is here to teach the ends and outs of surfing do and don’ts.

  1. Safety: Corky Carroll’s Surf school teaches surfers the importance of safety before getting in the water, such as the proper way to paddle out, rip currents, surf etiquette, and protecting yourself from the surfboard.
  2. Surfboard size: Corky Carroll’s Surf School will choose a surfboard that is suitable to the surfer’s skill set, height, and width. The surfboards at Corky Carroll’s are specifically designed for starting out surfers that are top-quality with the option of fiberglass or a high-performance soft-top surfboard.
  3. Knowledgeable instructors: All Corky Carroll’s instructors have years of experience surfing and teaching, along with CPR/first aid certifications and background checks.

When it comes to a surfboard, you pay for what you get. Buying a soft-top surfboard from Costco for 100$ is going to leave you with a poor-quality surfboard and experience. Let’s face it you don’t want to be a “kook” in the line-up.

The Wavestorm soft-top surfboard is known to soak up seawater and the leash is tangle-prone. Riding a Wavestorm typically earns a “newbie” badge in the surfing world. Surfers have joked that it moves like a school bus and it’s more like a bath toy than a surfboard.

waterlogged wavestorm

When it comes to a surfboard for learning Corky Carroll’s pick is StormBlade Surfboards. Their generous outlines and well calibrated thickness make surfing an unparalleled experience for beginners to advance. The strong yet forgiving foam layered construction provides a complete fun inspiring time in any surf condition. Try out our StormBlade Surfboards at Private Surf Lessons

StormBlade Surfboards encompass performance with style, only using high-quality materials. The soft-top surfboards are great for many different wave conditions and surfing levels. StormBlade makes learning easier with their style, performance, and quality to give the beginner a perfectly balanced wave-riding platform to surf.


Think twice about that Wavestorm 100$ Costco surfboard, the smart choice is to take a lesson with Corky Carroll’s and learn on a high-quality StormBlade surfboard.



What To Pack For A Day At Surf Camp & Beach Adventure

The essential packing list to bring for a day at Corky Carroll’s Surf Camp.


 What to pack! Thinking about going to surf camp or beach adventure this summer? Here at Corky Carroll’s Surf School we are pros at making a day out of going to the beach it’s almost like we live here. Enjoying a day of beach and ocean activities is generally the best place to spend a day off or an entire week at our Corky Carroll’s Surf Camp. From sunscreen to towels, you’re going to want to make sure you have all the necessities to get the most out of your camp experience! While enjoying a beach day at camp may seem pretty self explanatory, we have outlined some tips to ensure you maximize your fun! Here’s a quick beach packing list with all the essentials to help you pack quickly so you can get out the door and on your way! Go to our Huntington Beach Surf Camp page to join now! https://www.surfschool.net/huntington-beach-surf-camp

Beach Bag: First thing you need is a beach bag that you can fit all your items in. You don’t want to be carrying an arms-full of items when walking across the hot summer sand. Get yourself a spacious bag that has enough room to fit bulky items such as a towel, swimsuit, and extra pair of clothes.  We recommend that your bag has a zipper or something to cover up it up while you’re enjoying your beach activities so that the seagulls don’t get into your stuff.

Sunscreen: One of the most important things to take with you for a day in the sun. Even on a day where the weather looks overcast, you’re likely to get burnt as beaches tend to be very exposed to the elements. We recommend bringing a waterproof sunscreen with you but we do provide sunscreen if necessary. We choose Eco and skin friendly sunscreen such as Sun Bum and Zinka!

Sunscreen Beach Bag and Water

Sunscreen Beach Bag and Water

Lots of water: Don’t forget to bring along plenty of H2O. When surfing in the sun all day, even more water intake is required than on a regular day. It’s very important that you keep yourself hydrated whilst enjoying your beach day to avoid sunstroke and other related illnesses; with increased sweating in the sun, we tend to lose a lot of fluids, so make sure you drink moderate amounts of water often to avoid getting thirsty and therefore dehydrated. You can bring plastic water bottles but we recommend you bring a reusable water bottle from home so we can reduce our use of plastic. https://www.surfschool.net/blog/bolsa-chica-state-beach/

Swimwear: We recommend that you get your swimsuit on before you come to Corky Carroll’s Surf Camp so when you show up you can get in the water as soon as possible! We provide wet suits for all of our campers to wear, which we do recommend wearing while surfing, but it is not mandatory. If you know you are not going to want to a wet suit, you should wear a swimsuit that is sturdy enough not to fall off while surfing waves and swimming in the ocean. Most of our kids stay in the wet suits for the day but you are more than welcome to take it off during our out of water activities.

Snacks: Nothing increases your appetite quite like a day of running in the sand, hanging in the sun and wave surfing. Make sure that you bring plenty of snacks to keep your energy levels up! Fruit is a great option or anything else that doesn’t require preparation. If you’re taking sandwiches with you, remember that they may go soggy if not placed in a cool bag. Always pack more than you think you’ll need, as spending a day on the beach can take a lot of energy and you’ll want to keep your energy up for the surfing!

Towel, Hat, and Beach Bag

Towel, Beach bag, and Hat

Towels: One thing that you really can’t go to the beach without is a towel. Everyone needs a good towel to dry off with after a surf session, when eating your snack, and or when your tired and want to lay down in the sand. We would recommend choosing a bigger towel than you would use at home for more room to lay on and also a different patterned towel so you can recognize yours between other campers.

Flip Flops: Seriously, don’t forget your flip flops. There’s nothing worse than having to walk across the hot sand with your bare feet and it’s a real drag trying to put your socks or sneakers back on after you’ve spent the day soaking up the sun, sand, and water. Simply slip your flip flops on and you’re done and gone. We recommend your putting your initials on the sides and or choosing a distinct design so you don’t get yours mixed up with other campers.  

Sun Hat: We do provide shade for the campers under our Corky Carroll’s Surf Camp tents, but we recommend you also bring a hat. Hats do wonders for protecting your head, ears, face and neck while also keeping the sun out of your eyes. Even if you’re not a hat fan, just remind yourself that keeping those rays off your face will make a huge difference for the following day at surf camp.

A change of clothes: Ever get back to the car just to realize that you and your wet bathing suits and towels are about to ruin your car seats? Bringing an extra  pair of clothes will not only help you feel your most comfortable on the ride home, but it’ll make your parents happy also!

Empty plastic/reusable bag: This might sound like a strange one, but they’re great for keeping valuables dry and sand free.

Go to our Huntington Beach Surf Camp Photos Page https://www.surfschool.net/huntington-beach-surf-camp/huntington-beach-surf-camp-photos/

Sunscreen, Beach Bag, Water, Snack, Hat

Sunscreen, Beach Bag, Water, Snack, Hat



Packing For Costa Rica

The Essential Packing List

Once you’ve reserved a private bungalow at our all-inclusive Costa Rica surf ranch in Nosara, all that’s left to do is pack your bags! Let’s face it, deciding what to pack for a vacation can be overwhelming, especially if you’re not sure what to bring. When traveling internationally, the list of items is a bit different than a local weekend getaway and things can get confusing. Luckily, I’m here with answers to some of the most common packing list questions and also to give you a simple breakdown on what to bring and what not to bring on your trip to Costa Rica.

Do I need a passport to travel to Costa Rica?
Yes! Anyone traveling to Costa Rica from outside the country needs the following documents to enter:

  • Current passport: Valid a minimum of 3 months after arrival date (U.S. passports must be valid a minimum of one day from the day you enter Costa Rica).
  • Proof of Departure (flight itinerary)
  • Color photocopy of your passport
  • Government issued photo I.D. is strongly recommended

What clothes do I need for Costa Rica?

The big question of what to wear during your vacation can lead to overpacking the wrong items or leaving out important ones. Climate and activities can be the biggest deciding factors of what to wear. Depending on what season you’re traveling and what you plan to do while there, you may need to pack more or less. Keep in mind, the weather is always warm (85- 95 degrees in the afternoon and 75 degrees at night), the atmosphere is very casual and packing light is a good idea. Here are some essential clothing items to include :

  • Shorts, Shirts, Tank Tops, Lightweight Long Sleeve Shirts
  • Board Shorts / Swimsuits
  • Long Sleeved RashguardLight Jacket (Rainy season is May-August and November)
  • Ladies’ Cover-up (Sarong or Sundress)
  • Underwear & Extra Socks (in case feet get wet)
  • Athletic Shoes
  • Sandals (it’s a good idea to pack an extra pair)
  • Hat
  • Sunglasses
  • Optional Lightweight Pants or Surf Pants


  • Shampoo & Conditioner
  • Toothbrush & Toothpaste
  • Antiperspirant
  • Bodywash
  • Face / Makeup Remover Wipes
Costa Rica Packing List

Packing for Costa Rica

First Aid Kit

  • Prescriptions
  • Bug Repellent & Anti-itch Cream
  • Advil (muscle relief)
  • Vaseline (for ocean rash protection)
  • Aloe Vera for sunburns
  • Sunscreen SPF 30+ (We love Sun Bum Zinc & Headhunter!)

Electronics & Miscellaneous Items

When traveling out of the country, home can seem very far away but that doesn’t mean you have to miss out on all the creature comforts. Guests can enjoy TV with cable and free wifi in our open air rancho and lounge. We also use standard US outlets so no adapters are needed. Below are some important items to pack for a more enjoyable trip and for the downtime when you’re ready to retire to your private bungalow:

  • Cell Phone
    International Cell Phone Plans
  • GoPro and/or Camera
  • Chargers for Phone and Electronics
  • Flashlight for Nighttime Excursions
  • LUCI Light in case of power outage: Check them out!!
  • Favorite Candy & Snacks
  • Books and Magazines
  • Cards, Small Board Games or Puzzles
Packing essentials

Electronics In Costa Rica


  • Cash is recommended, especially for nearby activities and same day tours
  • No need to change your money at the airport, Costa Rica accepts U.S. currency (make sure they are unmarked and not torn).
  • Small bills/$20 are best to carry around
  • ATM/Credit Cards are accepted in most places
  • The average exchange rate is 550 Colon to $1.
  • Activities in Nosara include; Horseback Riding, Kayaking, Zip Line tours, Fishing tours, Tennis, Mini Golf, Quad rentals/tours, yoga & massage. Average outside vendor costs $60-$150 per activity. Yoga classes vary between $10-$20. Zip line is $50 for kids & $60 for adults (+$120 roundtrip transportation). For a full list of activities beyond surfing check out a typical day at our resort.

Important Reminders

  • Contact your bank to inform them you will be out of the country
  • Contact cell phone carrier for international travel pass. Read more about International Cell Phone Plans.
  • Each bungalow is equipped with a small safe that can hold small items and a tablet or 13” laptop but please leave jewelry and valuables at home!

Our 2nd generation family business has hosted guests for over 20 years and if there’s anything you need, our friendly staff are available to help. There is also a local Super, the equivalent to a small grocery market (like 7-Eleven), that most likely has any items you may have forgotten, such as toiletries, beverages and snacks .

Whether you’re planning a family vacation, romantic getaway, or epic Costa Rica surfing trip, we combine hospitality and the perfect location to help make the most of your vacation getaway!

By: Alexis Folden