I was talking to a buddy of mine about surfing Sunset (that is Los Angeles' Sunset, not Hawaii's Sunset) and I said that I wished there was a Sunset web cam available so I could check it out before I drove over. He looked at me like I was from Mars and then told me that there was a Sunset cam available on SwellMagnet.com and a year subscription was only $30 - and on top of that you can get a month for free just by sending in an email to them. That was a no brainer.
Swellmagnet has cams for: Malibu, Topanga, Sunset, Santa Monica (the only site I have seen with a cam for SM as well), Venice, El Porto, Manhattan Beach Pier, Torrance, Newport, and Huntington Beach. The cams are pretty good.
In addition to the cams there are also daily surf reports posted for each of the locations mentioned above as well as Zuma and County Line. The surf reports are pretty key in my surfing destination planning. The reports come in generally about 6:30 am and that is early enough I can take a peak at the cam and report and then select a destination.
On top of all of that, if I ever have a question I can email it in and a person actually responds with an answer and I'm pretty sure that person is the owner of the site. Gotta love and support small companies!
Now I have also used Surfine.com, which was written up by @TeamAWAC. I like Surfline and they have some great articles on the site in addition to their web cams and surf reports. At $70/year subscription price it just seems pretty darn expensive in comparison.
So, here is the bottom line for me - free 30 day trial (check),web cams in the spots that I need them to be (check), first hand surf reports delivered to me every day of the week (check), and a SCREAMING low price at $30 per year for the subscription (check). Add that all up and it is a winner!
Additionally, when I signed up their was a bonus at sign up of a copy of the DVD Urban Runoff 2. The video is cool, it was shot in and around LA so it was fun to see some local surfers at the same places I surf. I'm not sure how long they will be throwing in the freebie.
What did you think of this review?