Last week, surfers from all over the world descended upon Huntington Beach, Calif., for the U.S. Open of Surfing. Sadly, at the close of the festival, which has grown over the years to include skateboarding and massive street parties, "Surf City" descended into violent riots.

Surfing wasn't always about turf battles and machismo. Once upon a time, surfing was, well, pure, unadulterated fun. In honor of this beautiful sport that, when at its best, uniquely marries man and Mother Nature, here are 6 vintage photos of carefree surfers hitting the waves.

1931. (Fox Photos/Getty Images)

1933. (Bettmann/CORBIS)

1930. (Keystone/Getty Images)

1960. (Keystone/Getty Images)

1967. (H. Armstrong Roberts/ClassicStock/CORBIS)

1968. (PHOTO MEDIA/ClassicStock/CORBIS)