Here is some rare footage from 1938 of a few big swells coming into Newport Harbor (Newport Beach, CA). The long jetties at the mouth of the harbor providing smooth seas haven’t been built yet, and the waves are looking really good!
The area was known as the “Waikiki of the west coast”. The Balboa side jetty was built using a railroad to bring in rocks from inland, and is under construction when this film was made. The CDM side jetty was constructed a few years later using rocks barged over from Catalina Island.
Here are a few screenshots from the footage showing the harbor mouth without the jetties you see there today.
Thx to Ghetto Juice