In the heart of Dana Point, a town heavily immersed in surf culture, sits a legendary establishment known as Killer Dana.
This surf shop began from nothing but two friends and a dream.
Now, it has grown to one of the town's most popular surf shops.
Even still, every time you walk in, you are greeted as if you are the shop's very first customers.
The Killer Dana staff truly wants to help you find anything you’ve come looking for, even if it is simply a fun story.
In this article, we will take a dive into the rich history of Killer Dana and how it has grown into the thriving surf shop business it is today.
Killer Dana’s Place in Surf Culture
The first Killer Dana shop opened up in 1991 and was located alongside Pacific Coast Highway.
With just about 800 square feet and a few boards to show for, the original owners, Chris Andrews and Steve Price came together to create their very own surf shop.
The shop was named after the iconic wave that filled Dana Point before the harbor was built in 1971.
The wave was known to have grown to about 12 to 15 ft during large swells.
Sales associate Shayne Shroeder said that current owners, Mike and Carrie, still “really enjoy explaining the story of Killer Dana the wave”.
Killer Dana now has two locations where you can find a big print of what the old Killer Dana wave looked like behind the front counters.
What’s Sold at Killer Dana
Killer Dana is the place to go for all of your beach essentials.
One new thing Killer Dana started in 2023 was a pop-up tent right on Doheny State Beach.
Since this beach is placed right next to the store, they were able to set up shop right on the beach each day of summer where they would sell sunscreen, sand toys, and boogie boards, so beach-goers didn’t have to leave the beach.
In the off season for surf shops, you can still find all these goods in store, just not right at the beach.
Beyond the typical supplies that you would expect to find at any other surf shop, Killer Dana has many stylish and name brand companies that they consistently rotate in stock.
Some notable brands include: Billabong, Quicksilver, O’Neill, Z Supply, Sisstrevolution, IPD and Florence Marine.
Although you could purchase these goods directly from the provider, you can quickly stop into the shop and try on the clothes, all while supporting a smaller business.
Don’t forget to take a look at the Killer Dana apparel that features their iconic logo. You may be able to see people walking around wearing this same design all over Dana Point!
That, and rentals — Killer Dana offers every type of beach equipment you can imagine.
What To Look For in the Shop
If you visit the store on Del Prado Ave, take a look into the back boardroom. Here, you’ll find a ton of photos of local surfers, ripping at Salt Creek through the years.
You may even get the chance to meet some of the folks that are in the photos, because they still work there.
“They still love working even when they don’t have to. It keeps them young, excited, and they love watching the new generations of surfers too,” said Shroeder.
Take the time to meet these guys and get them talking. They would love to swap stories about different waves you’ve surfed, favorite memories, and anything else.
Waves Near the Surf Shop
The two most popular waves around Killer Dana are found at Doheny State Beach and at Salt Creek, which are both within a 2-mile radius of each store.
Doheny State Beach is a very popular place for people and families in the area to learn to surf or bring their younger kids to surf.
The reason for this is the size of the wave.
On most days, the waves here are from 1 to 3 ft and crash softly above the surface of the water.
Despite the crowds of beginner surfers, many intermediate to experienced longboarders also find favor in this wave.
Many of the kids will shorten the name of this wave to just “Doho”.
Within “Doho”, there are two breaks, Rivermouth and Boneyard, and here you’ll find many of the shop kids surfing once their shift is over.
Salt Creek is where all the local shortboarders go to showcase their skills.
Down at the beach, you will find a few different waves that you can test out, however the most popular wave is a left point break.
“After surfing Creek it’s super convenient to stop into Killer Dana and grab any goods I need because it’s so close to where I live and surf,” said Micah Abadie, one of the shop's team riders.
How To Get to Killer Dana Surf Shop
Killer Dana currently has two different locations open.
One of the shops is right off Del Obispo St in the Dana Point Harbor. The other location is in a more central part of the town on Del Prado Ave.
Both stores are owned and operated under the same management and are just a few streets apart from each other!
The addresses to the two shops are located below:
34467 Golden Lantern, Dana Point, CA 92629
24621 Del Prado Ave, Dana Point, CA 92629
Visit Killer Dana Surf Shop Today
Whether you are an experienced surfer or a beach enthusiast, Killer Dana extends an invitation to discover its blend of history, style, and community.
With two shops conveniently located in populated areas of town, you can’t miss it.
So, if you happen to be in Dana Point for the day or are just driving through, take the opportunity to step inside Killer Dana, look around, and maybe even get some new gear to take home.