Author Topic: Island Beach State Park NJ SUP surfing ban  (Read 1654 times)

Hookedup

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Island Beach State Park NJ SUP surfing ban
« on: July 16, 2020, 07:50:51 AM »
Iíve been surfing Island Beach State Park NJ for over 30 years. Accessing the ocean by anchoring my boat in the bay and walking over the barrier island. On Tuesday night 7-14-2020 I had not entered the water yet but my two friends did when State Park Police pulled up and called them out of the water for having paddles. We were told SUPs have been banned in the park a 12 mile stretch on beach. There were 5 other people in the water on boogie boards and longboards they were not called out surfing and boogie boarding is ok just no paddles. We were told we could use the boards just not the paddle. Iíve reached out to park management and the informed me that they did ban all sups in the ocean I tried explaining that my 8í8Ē sup was shorter than the guys longboards but they told me thatís the rule. So Iíll be reaching out to local Surfrider Foundation and our local senator maybe have to get a petition going for them to make a rule change. Iíve been stand up paddle surfing in this spot for over 10 years without any problems

TallDude

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Re: Island Beach State Park NJ SUP surfing ban
« Reply #1 on: July 16, 2020, 10:13:55 AM »
It's specific strain of venereal disease that runs through state parks (prone surfing only) management. We've had it here since before sup. The butt boards with their paddles mixing it up with a longboarding club who has some pull with the state parks. There isn't a cure. It's prejudice against non-prone surfers. Safety?? Bull shit!
It's not overhead to me!
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Bean

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Re: Island Beach State Park NJ SUP surfing ban
« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2020, 10:16:15 AM »
Hey Hookedup, as a 40+ year user of IBSP I can tell you the park rangers have been enforcing that from the beginning.  My understanding is that the no-paddles rule is to keep people from launching canoes and kayaks on the ocean side of the park (paddling is allowed on the inner-bay side).  So, in effect the Park lumped all paddling sports together.

As the Park is primarily a fishing beach, the concern from the perspective of the Park is of course that fishermen will be launching their plastic kayaks and canoes in rough conditions along a 10+ mile stretch of un-guarded beach at all hours.  I'm sure there are many small-boat fishermen that would be frothing for the opportunity to give it a go.




Hookedup

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Re: Island Beach State Park NJ SUP surfing ban
« Reply #3 on: July 16, 2020, 10:59:09 AM »
They added SUP to the kayak rule this year not shore how you honestly compare the two

supthecreek

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Re: Island Beach State Park NJ SUP surfing ban
« Reply #4 on: July 16, 2020, 12:43:51 PM »
That sucks!
beauracrates are fond of "large blanket" regulations.

Try the soft approach
If they won't reconsider:
Make noise.
Noise works.
Use the "social distance" benifit of SUP paddling.... a healthy, safe, responsible fitness alternative to the Gyms and Yoga studios they locked down.
Tell them they can't ban you from the fresh air as well..... Scream it. with a mask on  :)
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Bean

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Re: Island Beach State Park NJ SUP surfing ban
« Reply #5 on: July 17, 2020, 07:31:44 AM »
They added SUP to the kayak rule this year not shore how you honestly compare the two
Agreed, although they have been enforcing the "no-paddles" rule on SUPs since at least 2010, which is when I was first advised "not to launch that thing on the ocean side" while checking in at the gate.

You and I and perhaps everyone on this forum know that the activities are completely different, yet it's lost on the law-makers.

The question you have to ask yourself is what was so bad about allowing fishermen to launch canoes and kayaks off the beach to fish?  Is it because they are concerned for safety give the 10+ miles of unguarded beach and the fact that the best striper fishing is done at night with solid on-shores in low temp water.  Or, do we just live in a nanny state.  But, whatever the back story, that's apparently the conclusion that the law makers came to in the 70's.

It's really crazy when you realize that you could legally launch your SUP at Seaside Park (which is the next beach north of IBSP) and be paddling off the beach at IBSP illegally;D

digger71

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Re: Island Beach State Park NJ SUP surfing ban
« Reply #6 on: July 17, 2020, 11:05:31 AM »

The question you have to ask yourself is what was so bad about allowing fishermen to launch canoes and kayaks off the beach to fish?  Is it because they are concerned for safety give the 10+ miles of unguarded beach and the fact that the best striper fishing is done at night with solid on-shores in low temp water.  Or, do we just live in a nanny state. 

NJ definitely is a nanny state when it comes to ocean use.  Every time I am there I am amazed at how aggressive the life guards are enforcing safety - swimming, surfing, etc.  Last summer I heard more whistles in an hour at Seaside Park than I have heard in the past year here in San Diego. 

Bean

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Re: Island Beach State Park NJ SUP surfing ban
« Reply #7 on: July 18, 2020, 09:20:19 AM »
NJ has such a short ďswimĒ season, the part-time  lifeguards are mostly teachers and HS students, couple that with less experienced beach goers...

WaveWashed Hatteras

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Re: Island Beach State Park NJ SUP surfing ban
« Reply #8 on: July 18, 2020, 01:26:29 PM »
As a past president of the New Jersey Windsurfing Association NJWA (1994-1997) we lobbied the state for ocean windsurfing access at IBSP.  Our coalition consisted of  the NJWA (which had two Olympic hopefuls at the time, 200+ members and the largest windsurf regatta schedule in the USA) we had many small business owners (employing 100's in Ocean and Monmouth Counties), doctors and lawyers helped with our petitions, it was a well organized effort.   

 At that time if you anchored in Tices Shoals and walked over with a long surfboard or windsurfer there was a good chance of being asked to leave the water, fishing only.   If you launched a waveboard and  in the ocean in  Berkley Twp at 24th and then sailed upwind to the surf breaks inside the park limits the rangers would try to whistle you in and then tell you the that state had jurisdiction over the sand under the water out for three miles and that windsurfing and surfing were banned inside park limits.   The State Park service finally relented to our request and formally allowed oceanside windsurfing a IBSP in a fashion so that they could say they compromised to our request and met us in the middle.   Of course after we read all the rules allowing us access no one was actually able to take advantage of it.   We we blindsided by how well they listened to our requests, read our position and then figured out how to grant approval in a fashion as to make surfsailing at IBSP impossible.    To begin, we could only access the water from the south end of the main bathing area parking lots.  Could only surfsail when the beach was open to swimming, had to stay in a 50 yard wide area that began at the south end of the bathing area and continued south. If we sailed into the swimming area we could be whistled out of the water and made to leave the beach for the remainder of the day.    To begin, the primary winds in the summer were southerly thermals in the 15 to 20 range.  By giving us a very small upwind section of the beach it was near impossible to stay out of the swimming area.  When the wind was good and the waves were good the beach was red flagged to swimming so no sailing.   No sailing once the lifeguards went off duty.    They had won, to the general public they could announce they had granted access to the NJWA request for use of the state beach, to the actual users they made the rules so onerous as to make it impossible to actually use the beach.    That was a year or so of time petitioning, answering requests, public meetings fully wasted. 
 
Maybe, possibly these Windsurf Access rules are still on the books and could be gently modified to allow SUSing at the south end of the bathing beaches in the 50 yard wide corridor that was allocated for Windsurf wavesailing.  It might be worth spending the time to research as obscure rules often aren't rescinded, as the public effort to remove them might be as onerous as it was to get them enacted.

In hindsight I believe that the lobbyists for the NJ Beach Fishing or Beach Buggy, not sure of the exact name, was behind the scenes doing everything in their power to deny us access to what they perceived as their beaches.  Then when told by the state that our access could not be denied they poured through our written requests and maps to give us everything we has said was unsuitable.    We specifically asked for 100 yards of beach downwind of the swimming area. We outlined how unlike surfers we could regularly ride waves for 30 to 50 yards, then slowly sail back up wind.  We noted if we fell while waveriding, or the wind dropped we could easily drift 50 yards downwind until we got our gear back into sailing position to head back upwind.  We requested the downwind beach so that in the event of lost/broken gear or wind drop there was no chance that we would drift into the swimming area.   The state used this rationale against us, saying that Lifeguards could not be responsible for a rescue if we were outside of the designated surfsaiing area, they could not justify adding lifeguards to monitor an additional 100 yards of beach for an activity that was dependant on the weather.  They put us upwind so that in the event of gear breakage or separation from gear we would drift into the lifeguard area not away from it.   They said it was our responsibility to not drift into the swimming area, not the lifeguards responsibility to make a rescue 100 yards down the beach.   But if we ended up in the swimming area we needed to leave the beach.

Two years later I sold by Toms River house, moved to Hatteras Island and didn't look back for 20 years.   I didn't sail/surf/sup  NJ until last summer when I took advantage of LBT's surf between the flags trial.   If not for CoVID-19 I probably would have been back on LBI earlier this summer.   IBSP is a beautiful spot but until the Fishing Lobby can be broken it will stay inaccessible to surf/sup/sailers forever.  For now if I do visit NJ in the summer then LBI or Absecon Inlet will be the destination.
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NorthJerzSurfer

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Re: Island Beach State Park NJ SUP surfing ban
« Reply #9 on: July 18, 2020, 01:35:54 PM »
NOOOOOO!!!!!

I have sup surfed IBSP ALL the time over the past 10 years.  I've never had a problem- but have not been yet this summer.

This would be a HUGE loss.  I specifically go to IBSP to space out.  God help me if I tried to SUP surf on 'surfing' beach zones in the summer with the lifeguards.  Adding Sups to the shoulder to shoulder packs is just a bad idea.


IBSP was an absolute Memorial day-Labor day lifesaver for NJ Surfers and Suppers.

Anyone organizing to fight this please let me know how I can help.


Hookedup

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Re: Island Beach State Park NJ SUP surfing ban
« Reply #10 on: July 19, 2020, 06:23:23 AM »
North Jerez this did happen and since Tuesday Iíve reached out to the park management Surfrider a local senator and the New Jersey DEP who runs all the state parks in NJ and the Governorís office. Iíve also reached out to about 6 local surf shops asking if they would help get some petitions signed. Any help would be great email me EJN2004@comcast.net

WaveWashed Hatteras

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Re: Island Beach State Park NJ SUP surfing ban
« Reply #11 on: July 19, 2020, 09:26:39 AM »
I've been away from that area for 23 years.  I looked up the IBSP current rules and they show that Sailboarding and Surfing are only allowed in the area directly south of the bathing beach.  This might be a tough fight as technically no one is allowed in the water outside of the lifeguarded area.   Asking surfers to support your effort may only result in them also being banned from the water outside the designated area.   My take would be work on getting SUP added to the Sailboarding and Surfing area.  This would "make SUP an official activity" and give Park Rangers the discretion to allow it in areas other than the designated area.   
Writing to Surfrider, Surfshops, NJ Senators, Governor is a scattershot method.   Best to use science and existing Law, save the petitions for last as they will have the least effect IMHO.   Create a simple chart showing the Coast Guard classification of Surfboard, Sailboard, Kayak, Canoe.   The former are allowed activities, the latter are banned activities.   Show how the SUP aligns with the allowed activity closer than the banner activity.   This would have to conveyed to NJDEP as they make the rules.   Having a friendly politician can help to get the audience with NJDEP.     Good Luck.
Sunova Speeed 9'5"
MDD BamBam 10'8"
Tabou 10'2"
C4 XXL iSup
Black Project Pure Paddle
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