Killer Peak


back in the day...

Moss Landing used to be a collection of fish packing plants, fishing boats and fishermen, plenty of fishermen. At one point, someone thought putting a long pier out to offload fish from the boats would be a good idea. A few significant storms knocked chunks off the pier and someone decided to send railcars, filled with boulders, off the end of the remaining pier to protect the pier, though the logic of creating an artificial reef to protect the pier seems a bit incongruous. More storms knocked down more of the pier and the railcar reef created a rare wave that earned the name, "Killer Peak." It was a treacherous take-off and a quick zip through a barrel to a close-out but it was really fun if you didn't get clobbered. These days, the shore pound inside of this wave occasionally breaks and it's called, "Crash Balls," for all the reasons you might expect. 

This image is based on a photo I took on a spring day with a sizable northwest wind swell, on a minus tide and this is the last time I saw "Killer Peak" break. Storms the next year washed away the remaining reef. Through the disintegrating pilings, I saw one guy waiting in flat water and watched him for 10, maybe 15, minutes. Then a five wave set came through. He got this wave, screamed through the barrel, straightened off, got out and left. The remnants of the pier, shown here, were torn down a decade later.