Distributor of Ideas

The Inertia

The iconic scene in The Shining when Wendy (Shelley Duvall) discovers the novel her husband Jack (Jack Nicholson) has been working on is just pages and pages of the words “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy,” could easily be adapted for surfers. All work and no surf makes Jack a dull boy, you could say. Flat spells frustrate to the point of near-insanity. But if you rely on giant bodies of freshwater to produce ridable surf like our friends in the Great Lakes, where it gets so cold that icicles literally accumulate on your beard, you could wake up to a phenomenon that oceanic surfers know nothing about: your local completely frozen over.

That’s what happened to Rochester-based Aurelien “Frenchy” Bouche-Pillon, 36, who regularly surfs Lake Ontario during the recent bomb cycle that put much of the eastern half of the contiguous United States into a deep freeze. To make lemonade from lemons, Frenchy recruited his friend Ryan James, 30, and another buddy, Alex Freeman, to film the two towing through an empty parking lot on snowboards around town.

“Lake Ontario is frozen. Can’t surf!!!” said Frenchy in a Facebook message. “We invented something else!”


The two are hardly the first to tow snowboard through city streets. Nonetheless, this looks like a blast.


Only the best. We promise.


Join our community of contributors.