.

So Where Can You Watch the Mavericks Surf Contest?

Not on the beaches and bluffs overlooking the big wave, that’s for sure. Here’s a look at where you can get in on the surfing action.

Because the bluffs above Mavericks are environmentally sensitive and some spectators in the past have been injured by rogue waves and rocks falling from the cliffs, local authorities from San Mateo County Sheriff, California Parks, CHP, San Mateo County Harbor District and other participating agencies will again close off all roads to Pillar Point, including access to the beach and bluffs, for public safety.

So how do you see what’s going on a half-mile west? If you're lucky, you know someone with a boat or helicopter. If not, your only chance to see the Big Wave surfers in the water is on a flat screen.

Attend the Mavericks Invitational Festival

The annual festival is on the grounds of the Oceano Hotel and Spa in Princeton Harbor, Half Moon Bay, the epicenter for the Mavericks Invitational located on the road to Mavericks and across from Jeff Clark’s Mavericks Surf Shop. They have plans for a live stream of the contest.

When Will It Start?

The Mavericks Festival starts at 8 a.m. on Sunday, Jan. 20, 2013, just as the first heat of the contest starts. The festival will run all day with a live steam of the contest action. As soon as the final heat is complete, all the action on the water will move to the Festival, where the surfers will gather for the Awards Ceremony. The event wraps up at sunset.

Where Can I Park?

Parking is available at the Half Moon Bay Airport for $15, with proceeds benefitting the Boys & Girls Club of the Coastside. The entrance to the lot is off of Capistrano Road. The San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office will not permit parking on Highway 1 in the vicinity of the harbor and spectators will not be able to park in Princeton. The best option is to bike along Highway 1 or the Coastal Trail to Pillar Point Harbor. SamTrans also offers public transportation to the area. Check the timetables to the Coastside here.

But I’ll Miss the 49ers Game

No you won’t. You can watch them both from the comfort of your own home or at area businesses by watching the football game on TV and the free webcast live of all the surfing action, interviews and contest details at www.mavericksinvitational.com. Plus, they’ll have some exciting, never-before-seen footage from camera angles provided by presenting sponsor GoPro. Also, it’s inevitable that a screen at Old Princeton Landing and Half Moon Bay Brewery Co. in Princeton will be tuned in to the football game and surf webcast as well. Other area businesses from Café Classique, Ketch Joanne, Flavor , and the American Legion will also stream the webcast for patrons as they did in 2011 when the contest was last held.

How Much Does it Cost?

The Mavericks Festival at the Oceano Hotel is $10 ($20 at the gate, if not sold out) and includes: Official Mavericks Invitational poster, program, wristband and admission to the festival grounds with access to food, giveaways, merchandise, music, viewing areas, and a chance to meet and greet the surfers and legends of big wave surfing. Get tickets online here.

Where Can I Get Updates on the Day of the Event?

Keep up with what's going on with the contest on Half Moon Bay Patch as well as on our Facebook page here and Twitter, @HMoonBayPatch.

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