Looking at the picture above you’ll see five distinct sets.
Set 1 is the closest to the shore.
Sets 2, 3, 4 as you go farther out into the ocean.
Set 5 is a forming wave, outside.
"How you look at the waves has a lot to do with your age."
I remember in my early twenties my eyes would immediately have went to the last and biggest set 4 and the forming outside set 5.
Risks be dammed, I wanted the thrill of the biggest ride.
It also helped that I was in terrific shape to deal with the increased danger of playing in the biggest waves.
Now I didn’t have to be surfing in the waves.
I could be body surfing, boogie boarding, or just riding up and down and swimming on them.
The shore breaker set (set 1) and the next set out (set 2) would have looked so boring to me.
I just needed to hurry up and get by them.
The third set from the shore looked a little more interesting.
It had some open face waves with some height to them.
Set 3 might serve as a little practice area to warm up and get use to the water and the wave's pace.
The next set out, #4, was where the action was.
Big, open face waves that would surely give me a thrill while I came ripping down the face trying to stay ahead of the wave collapsing right or left.
But, if you look behind the fourth wave you’ll see the next big wave forming.
Set 5 is where the thrill and uncertainty is.
That building wave could be just another one of the same size or it could be the first of a BIGGER set that occasionally rolls in.
That’s where the biggest danger and thrill would be found.
So that forced me to stay in the last biggest set waiting for a huge set to occur.
Now remember all of these thought processes were occurring in my early twenties when the thrill of a big ride completely outweighed the risk of the danger of getting into a big, painful wipeout.