John Elwell and Tom Carlin, Sunset Cliffs, San Diego CA

Tom Carlin, John Elwell at Sunset Cliffs with Car

John Elwell and Tom Carlin at Sunset Cliffs 1949, a friend took the picture with my camera. The car is 1931 Ford Model A four door sedan. The boards are a hollowed out red wood plank and a reshaped plank by Simmons on top. A good comparison between the old planks and Simmons’ light displacement boards.

The Ford was marvelous in Mexico. It rode over rough roads, traveled on beaches with the tires deflated, and could be repaired easily. It had a gravity fuel tank. Tom and I were likely the first to discover the Tijuana Playa which was a dry wheat farm, we went into the area through a swinging unlocked gate on a dirt road, and found huge untouched lobster nests. The Playa is now a huge beachside development South of the Tijuana Sloughs and Imperial Beach. No one was there and it was a pristine, a virgin area full of lobsters and fish. We traveled with pliers, a screw driver, and bailing wire to fix things on the car if we had too. We often had too. We never saw any surfers or divers in Mexico during this time. We were the first and went often. It soon changed fast!

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