category_outlined / Sports

Surfer December 2017

We founded Surfer Magazine in 1960 with a mission: to bring our readers a slice of the entire surfing world with each issue. And for over four decades, we've made good on that promise. Every issue of Surfer is packed with spectacular award-winning photos, provocative interviews with the leading pros, and journeys to the coolest undiscovered surf spots. With your order you'll get the Annual Oversized Issue, the Buyer's Guide, and the Hot 100, featuring the world's best new surfers.

United States
American Media Operations, Inc
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8 Issues


access_time3 min.
editor’s note

I felt like the odd man out sitting on the boil at Rockpile, flanked on either side by a half dozen pros known for rushing the heaviest Hawaiian surf. Seeing as how I’m known for writing things like this magazine intro from the safety of my San Diego office, and not for throwing myself over mutant ledges in front of a literal pile of rocks, I thought maybe I’d crashed the wrong party. There was one surfer, however, who seemed even more out of place among the logo-clad surfing elite. An anonymous, middle-aged man had paddled through the gauntlet of pros earlier in the session, wearing a helmet and a bulky life vest, on an oversized board that had “garage-sale find” written all over it. He had moved well past the…

access_time3 min.
traveling light

This is how lugging boards abroad has played out since the beginning of surf travel: Figure out what kind of quiver to bring on your trip, stuff it into an oversized bag, haul it to the airport … and have a panic attack. “How much will they charge me?” you wonder. “Will the boards arrive in one piece?” At the check-in counter, the agent slaps you with an arbitrary charge, starting your trip off on a decidedly bad foot. “Six hundred dollars for four boards? That’s the price of my ticket!” Tour veteran Adrian “Ace” Buchan wants to put an end to the madness. Six months ago, he and his friend Gideon Silverman had an idea, and they realized that with Buchan’s industry connections and Silverman’s technical chops (he was a…

access_time3 min.
blood, sweat and tears

Look at the two fresh-faced Aussie pros in the above profile from May 1999. Danny Wills and Mick Campbell had just wrapped an astonishing year on the World Tour, streaked into the pro surf scene like meteors in 1998, shone as bright as suns, and they did it against some of the all-time greatest competitors, no less. World-title races in the 1990s were not exactly kind to lesser-known competitors. The decade was bookended by Tom Curren winning his third and last championship (1990) and Occy winning his first (1999). In between, Kelly Slater won six titles, Damien Hardman picked up his second and Derek Ho brought the trophy home for Hawaii. Just a step or two below these heavyweights on the podium were names like Rob Machado, Shane Beschen and…

access_time4 min.
keala kennelly, 39

“You have no idea what you are capable of until you challenge yourself. You are so much stronger than you think.” Sometimes girls feel like they have to prove themselves. Growing up on Kauai, I felt like the guys were especially hard on me because I was a girl. Even when I would do something awesome, they wouldn’t give me a lot of credit for it. But when we got a little older, that all changed. You have to be scrappy and resilient when you’re the underdog. Having that mentality is always beneficial, because life will throw shit at you. When someone is critical of you when you’re young, it can leave a really negative mark. I was told so many discouraging things as a grom. I’ve been called everything from loser to…

access_time5 min.

Do you have other interests besides surfing? Other life-consuming hobbies or sports, complete with their own unique cultures, charmingly peculiar vocabularies, verbal signifiers of who’s part of the in crowd and who’s not? Can you move freely between the languages of surf and your other interests? I ask because I’ve spent the past few years spiraling deeply down the fly-fishing rabbit hole. Surely fly-fishing has a codified lingo, a jargon indecipherable to the outsider that immediately separates the newbs (me) from the long-timers (Ted, the fly-shop dude). But if it does, I have yet to learn it. When I walk into a fly-shop (which, by the way, does not feel all that different from a surf shop — neoprene-footed waders even give the place a rubbery, surf-shop odor), my vocabulary…

access_time16 min.
golden aspirations

IT was just past 11 a.m. a few weeks before the start of the Hurley Pro, and a solid south swell was producing overhead sets at Lower Trestles. The air was hot and sticky and the lineup was crowded, looking like a tepid pool dotted with gnats between sets. As I stood near the water’s edge, I watched Gabriel Medina, Ian Gouveia and Filipe Toledo trade lefts in preparation for the upcoming World Tour event. But it wasn’t Brazil’s best that brought me to the cobblestone break. I was there to meet the pride of another nation — one seldom mentioned in discussions about top-tier surfing. Conversations in Mandarin filled the air as seven visiting Chinese surfers — three women and four men, ranging from 14 to 27 years old —…