Episode Archives

Episode 75: David Ochoa – Part 2

David Ochoa Part 2 -- spearfishing guide, Indo, Madagascar, Mexico, filming underwater

In Episode 75 we connect back with David Ochoa, one of my favorite spearos on the planet, and hear stories from the past six months of guiding and filming spearfishing trips around the world. David takes through his time scouting and leading spearfishing trips in Madagascar, Mexico, Azores, Panama, and Indonesia. David describes his version of fish paradise in Indo, sharing stories of huge fish and pristine waters. We hear stories of New Zealand and of David’s massive kingie / yellowtail wrapping up at 40 meters deep and the group effort to bring the fish back to the boat. David talks about his recent film, Agua Negra, The Movie (which I love) and connecting with Red Bull to film their events. As always, David provides an amazing perspective on maintaining respect for the ocean, the fish we take, and the people we visit in our travels.

Thanks for sharing David’s ocean life with us. Be sure to check out Agua Negra on Vimeo and amazing photos and videos of David on Instagram. You can hear David’s Part 1 episode here.

This Ocean Life Podcast David Ochoa

Episode 74: Ryan Levinson – Pt 2

Ryan Levinson Part 2 - muscular dystrophy at sea, living afloat in French Polynesia, rediscovering the bodyboard

In Episode 74 we check back in Ryan Levinson, a hard charging man of the water living with Muscular Dystrophy in the waters of French Polynesia. Ryan recaps the past 6 months living on a sail catamaran in Tahitian waters with wife Nicole. We hear of them making the move to their new catamaran after being passed by that boat in the middle of the Pacific Ocean en route from Mexico and the learning curve to life on a new, larger boat. Ryan shares the day to day routine of life in the Tahitian Islands, scuba diving, kite boarding, sailing, and the relationships they’ve made with other cruisers. Ryan shares perspective on riding waves with the bodyboard in the heavy Tahitian surf as his continued loss of muscle makes it more and more challenging to ride waves. We hear about a perfect paradise island that he and Nicole have found with incredible surf and amazing local people (which Ryan is keeping secret — I’m going to get it out of him :)).

Thanks for sharing Ryan’s ocean life with us. You can find pictures and video of Ryan and Nicole on their Facebook page, Instagram page and epic YouTube Channel, Two Afloat.

Please also check out the adaptive sports organizations that Ryan works with:

https://www.challengedathletes.org

https://stokeforlife.org/

This Ocean Life Podcast Ryan Levinson

Episode 73: Dan Haifley

Dan Haifley -- ocean activism, preventing oil drilling, preserving the wild

In Episode 73 we speak with Dan Haifley, an ocean activist who has spent decades working to protect California waters. Dan takes us through the amazing story of battling oil companies in the 1980’s and 90’s to block their offshore oil drilling north of Santa Barbara, CA. We hear of the grass roots activism Dan was involved in with Save Our Shores where he worked closely with NOAA and local government agencies to designate the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary, a 6,000+ square mile protected area along California’s coast. Dan talks about his interaction with Jack O’Neill leading into development of the Sea Odyssey program to educate and inspire school children on the ocean. Dan shares a lot of great perspective on citizen involvement to protect the ocean, the challenges we face today around conservation, and the amazing people he’s worked with over the years.

Thanks for sharing Dan’s ocean life with us. You can find pictures and video of him on Facebook , Oneill Sea Odyssey, and Save Our Shores.

This Ocean Life Podcast Dan Haifley

Stoked Grom Stories: Perlyn Bros

Stoked Grom Stories: Perlyn Brothers - surfing, fishing, diving, running a company

In this episode of Stoked Grom Stories we talk with Ethan and Merritt Perlyn, two brothers enjoying their ocean lives in the waters around Miami, Florida. The boys take us through their recent adventures of surfing in Costa Rica, diving with sharks in the Bahamas, experiencing the icy waters of Northern California for the first time, and developing a deep connection with the ocean. We hear how Ethan and Merritt started their clothing and lifestyle company, CREPIC, after a great surf session that was both ‘crazy’ and ‘epic’ at the same time. They boys take us through the day to day of CREPIC and how they place strong focus on sustainability (no plastic packaging) and giving back to local non-profits (anti-bullying and Surfers for Autism). We also hear about prone paddling, shark tagging, and many more activities the boys enjoy in the water. Ethan and Merritt skillfully handle the highly anticipated grom lightening round of questions and leave us all with inspiration to do something good for the ocean.

Thanks for sharing Ethan and Merritt’s ocean life with us. You can find pictures of them ripping on Instagram and check out their CREPIC gear.

This Ocean Life Podcast CREPIC
This Ocean Life Podcast CREPIC

Episode 72: Josh Smith

Josh Smith - marine biology, kelp forest changes, scuba diving

In episode 72 we speak with Josh Smith, a marine biologist spending his time underwater in the kelp forests of California. Josh takes us through his research to understand the changes in kelp forests with a relatively recent explosion in sea urchin populations and the interactions of other animals like otters, abalone, and sea stars are involved. We hear about the day to day operations of doing research in the cold waters of Monterey Bay, the physical demands of daily scuba diving, and talk about how the loss of kelp forests and other changes to the ocean environment may be part of larger cycles that we humans just haven’t been around long enough to understand yet. Josh also shares some neat perspective on the importance of mentors, both in the water and on land, to help us pursue our calling. If you want more on marine biology in California waters, see a related episode with Steve Lonhart.

Thanks for sharing Josh’s ocean life with us. You can find pictures and video of him on InstagramFacebook and website.

This Ocean Life Podcast Josh SMith

Episode 71: Ginaia Kelly

Ginaia Kelly - ocean protection, volunteer, professional surfing

In Episode 71 we speak with Ginaia Kelly, a woman of the water who spends her days supporting ocean protection, volunteering to help those less fortunate, and pursuing her own passion in the water. Ginaia takes us through her work with the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation to raise awareness and support for ocean protection along the California coast. We hear of the dynamics behind supporting a designated marine sanctuary and the coordination role that Ginaia plays. Ginaia shares her stories of surfing in the waters of Santa Cruz, stand up paddle boarding with whales, and volunteering her time with Ride A Wave, getting disabled children into the surf, and volunteering with Operation Surf (getting veterans into the surf). Tons of great perspective on helping the ocean, helping others, and loving life in the water from Ginaia.

Thanks for sharing Ginaia’s ocean life with us. You can find pictures and video of her on Facebook and Monterey Bay Sanctuary Foundation website. Photos by Bob Island Kristin Heitzler.

Episode 70: Ryan Croteau

Ryan Croteau - guiding surf trips, Guatemala, surfing Scandinavia

In Episode 70 we speak with Ryan Croteau, a former professional surfer and world traveler turned surf guide and instructor. Ryan takes us through his early surfing days in Florida, competing in local contests, and making a move with his family out to Southern California in his teens. Ryan takes us through his time and stories from surfing in Sweden and other Scandinavian countries as well as an epic road trip from the UK down into Portugal. Ryan shares a great story of finding his passion for teaching others how to surf and how he started his company, California Surf Experience, where he takes groups of new and experienced surfers on guided trips in his home waters of Southern California, Guatemala, and more. We also talk Jiu Jitsu, used surfboards, and general stoke for doing what we love in the ocean.

Thanks for sharing Ryan’s ocean life with us. You can find pictures and video of him on Instagram and California Surf Experience website.

This Ocean Life Ryan Croteau
This Ocean Life Ryan Croteau

Episode 69: Sachi Cunningham

Sachi Cunningham -- big wave surfing photography, film making, gender equity on tour

In Episode 69 we speak with Sachi Cunningham, a legendary woman of the water who has been photographing the waves of Mavericks and other heavy breaks for close to 20 years. Sachi shares her stories of developing her strength swimming in the water as a youth then finding her passion for photography, surfing, and waves. We hear of Sachi’s first day swimming and shooting at big Ocean Beach, her progression of capturing big wave photos from the water at both Mavericks and Jaws, and the big wave community she has been part of for so long. Sachi talks about her focus for helping women in professional big wave surfing reach gender equity on the world tour and her current project, She Change The Film, that documents the events and key figures in that awesome story. We also hear Sachi’s physical and mental approach to swimming in big surf and introducing her young daughter to the ocean.

Thanks for sharing Sachi’s ocean life with us. You can find pictures and video of her on Instagram and She Change The Film website. Please consider donating a few bucks to Sachi’s She Change project to help raise awareness for gender equity in surfing and beyond. 

Photos by Maria Fernanda and Sarah Makarewicz.

This Ocean Life Podcast Sachi Cunningham

Episode 68: Alo Slebir

Alo Slebir - charging Mavericks at age 17, board paddling, spearfishing

In episode 68 we visit with Alo Slebir, a 17-year old man born and bred for the water who is up for a WSL Big Wave Paddle Award for the 2018/19 winter. Alo takes us through his progression surfing big Steamer Lane before finding his passion for the waves at Mavericks at age 14, the mentors who inspired and guided him, along with his perspective on that wave and the changes he’s seen in the lineup over a few short years. Alo shares stories of being addicted to the Powerlines videos of Mavericks as a young kid, competitive surfing in the local Santa Cruz scholastic league, his love for downwind prone paddling (just like dear old dad), and recent love for freediving and spearfishing. We also hear stories of surf trips to Mainland Mexico and a recent, epic trip to Iceland. Plenty to be inspired by from this young man of the water.

Thanks for sharing Alo’s ocean life with us. You can find pictures and video of him on his Instagram page.

This Ocean Life Podcast Alo Slebir

Episode 67: Dan Semrad

Dan Semrad - Oregon freediving, spearfishing, training others

In Episode 67 we speak with Dan Semrad, founder of Oregon Freediving Company and life-long man of the water. Dan takes us through his evolution from scuba diving into freediving sharing stories on the people and places along the way such as Honduras, Grand Cayman, Hawaii, and more. Dan shares his perspective on training others through his work with PFI and NAUI while pushing his own breath hold limits. We hear of underwater blackouts and rescues while diving and hunting fish in the dark waters of the Oregon coast and adventures in Alaska with Dan’s thoughts on learning techniques to pursue new types of fish and enjoying the overall pursuit.

Thanks for sharing Dan’s ocean life with us. You can find pictures and video of Dan on his Instagram page and website – if you’re interested in freedive training definitely hit him up.

This Ocean Life Podcast Dan Semrad