Bend to Baja documents a surf-inspired road trip along the West Coast of North America. In February 2005, a group of world-renowned surfers left Ventura, California, for Bend, Oregon. From Oregon, the crew worked its way south to the tip of Baja, looking for waves and traveling in a pickup truck converted to run on alternative fuel sources: veggie oil and biodiesel.
Jeff Johnson, along with Chris, Keith, and Dan Malloy, experienced a road trip centered on surfing, climbing, and camping. Along the way, they met an array of characters, found rich, road-weathered experiences, and endured setbacks, all against the backdrop of a captivating ocean. Bend to Baja chronicles their journey and a nontraditional lifestyle centered on the search for waves.
Jeff Johnson grew up in Danville, California, and moved to Hawaii as soon as he graduated high school. He lived on the North Shore of Oahu for fifteen years, where he juggled two jobs: a North Shore City and County lifeguard and an international flight attendant for a commercial airline. These two jobs provided him a unique lifestyle. As a traveler, self-taught writer and photographer, Jeff has combined these talents to chronicle his experiences. His stories and photographs have appeared in The Wall Street Journal, The Surfer’s Journal, Alpinist, Surfer magazine, Climbing magazine, and Outside magazine. The Surfer's Journal has described him as “a piece of true grit,” and someone who “doesn't back down when sketching the seamier side of the surf ghetto.” Bend to Baja was his first book when it published in 2006. Jeff’s second book, 180° South: Conquerors of the Useless, is a coffee table book as well as a documentary film.
Jeff now resides in Santa Barbara, California, where he works full-time for Patagonia, Inc. as a staff photographer, writer, and assists with product development. He divides his time between the mountains and the ocean. His website is jeffjohnsonstories.com.