They Almost Won the Darwin Award…

So when someone tells you to step back from the waves, it’s tempting to ignore them. After looking at the shots below where two teens almost “won” the Darwin Award’s highest honor, maybe you might rethink that.

On Saturday, Mark Scheffer, a photograher, was on the Mendocino headlands when he saw two teenagers getting dangerously close to the breakers.

He wrote, “I was shooting the breaking waves above them. They were taking pictures with their phones, I called out to them, motioned that they were too close and needed [to] move back.” Scheffer said the two ignored him.  Then came the big waves. “[The] first wave was close…that was fun for them…[S]econd wave…not so much!”

Here’s a series of four shots Scheffer took:
DE1A2363 MendocinoMendocino1Mendocino2 (1)

“Thankfully,” he said, “they were washed inland, soaked from head to toe and unhurt!”

Joking aside, we’re really glad the kids are okay. But, we’re also going to take heed and watch out for the waves next time we’re at the beach!



  • I hope they saw their past in front of them!

  • Great photos Mark, those 2 were so lucky, Ive seen cars and trucks washed off the Jetties up here in Humboldt Bay, they werent so lucky, they were warned but didnt heed to it

  • For god’s sake, they were lucky as hell. Could have easily been a documentary of a death…

  • I can “boast” of very probably having saved three people’s lives by screaming at them just in time — one by a split second and two by about thirty seconds — but too often no one with any sense is near enough to prevent the worst.

    It happens too often. I usually have to yell and thump and vent my frustration on my furniture and on my blog when it happens… and, yep, “Darwin Award” ends up being about the only way to look at it… that an inability to grok the most basic laws of physics nails a lot of people.

    Maybe these two can take up screaming at people about to get smacked into the sea and up against the rocks now. I’m glad they lived, but I want them out there screaming at people with me.

    • I also have a “boast” about saving someone from drowning.

      I was a teen and with my family at Swimmer’s Delight in the 90’s. As I was swimming across the deep pool my foot hit something soft. I looked down under the water and saw a small child flailing. I dove down, grabbed him and swam him to shore. I remember his unaware parents were pretty darn thankful when I pulled him outta the water.

      Mother Nature is not to be taken for granted, she is not forgiving!!

      • Wow! One lucky kick! One lucky kid… who probably won’t be up for any water-related Darwin Awards, “thanks” to that lucky break. Good deal.

        I’ve heard city slickers learning to hunt exclaiming about Mother Nature not giving part of one fig whether we live or die, that for all her beauty and our adoring it, she doesn’t love us back. I don’t agree exactly. I think she loves us plenty, just not more than the rest of her creatures.

        It strikes me that a big part of the problem is that kids are not being taught the kinds of life-saving things that used to come almost naturally to us all… that this insulation from the world when they are little is leaving them at a loss later… or… or I just was lucky to be born when and where I was and learned about this sort of stuff from a very young age.

  • Love those photo shots.nice.those kids are lucky to be alive,how dumb!!!at least you tried to warn them they were just to smart hahaha

  • Maybe a little wiser. Love nature, Fear nature, Respect nature! She loves us, we make great fish food!

  • That was way too close to a search and rescue situation. I’m so happy they’re safe!

    I hope someone can save these photos and post them now and again in the future as a public service reminder.

  • One of those days I can remember mom telling me before I left the house
    “Better make sure you have clean underwear on” cause you just never know…

  • Lost Croat Outburst

    Hope they learned their lesson. If you’re unconscious because your head cracked on the rocks after the wave sucks you in, that’s the end of it. Better luck next life.

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