The sun was barely up Thursday morning before people started making their way to Half Moon Bay to take a peek at the big waves crashing ashore.
Good Morning from Half Moon Bay! What a gorgeous sunrise as the waves crash on shore. Haven’t spotted many monster waves yet, but NWS warning of 14 footers and even larger breaker waves up to 25’ @abc7newsbayarea pic.twitter.com/8jJIV1lNmy— Julian Glover (@JulianGABC7) January 2, 2020
ABC7 News spoke to father and son Wilson and Armani Gonzalez who came to catch crab and stripers.
They only come out to the beach "once a year, twice a year. That's it," Wilson Gonzalez told ABC7 "So I don't know what we're getting into right now."
VIDEO: Wave sweeps man into ocean at Bonny Doon Beach
Other onlookers tell us they know the drill.
"It doesn't bother us," said Trudy Donais. "I never turn my back to the ocean. I know better."
Sure enough, paddlers and surfers eventually showed up to take advantage of the big waves.
Surfer Adam Coopersmith said he's looking forward to "some time to relax, some time to have some fun. Catch a ride."
He would later say the waves weren't as exciting as he was expecting.
"It a pretty average day at the jetty - nothing that special."
Others decided to stay on land and just take in nature's power and beauty. Ian Partridge, visiting from England, is cycling across the world and said this may just be his most beautiful path yet.
"It's great to start my day cycling, knowing I'm going to go down the coast with the sea on my right-hand side," said Partridge. "It lifts my spirits just looking at it."
The National Weather Service is reminding people who do come out to the beaches to stay away from the water's edge and never turn your back to the ocean.
Watch the latest AccuWeather forecast and take a look at recent weather stories and videos.