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The Inertia

When it comes to surfing larger-than-average waves, Billy Kemper resides near the top of the heap. At Jaws in particular, Kemper is in a league with just a handful of others. He sits on three Jaws Challenge wins, a Big Wave World Title, and is widely regarded as one of the best at one of the world’s most prominent big waves.

In today’s playing field, where big wave surfing is fast becoming much more accessible, that’s no small feat—more and more, big wave surfers are making their way to each and every Jaws swell to push the limits, and Kemper’s consistent dominance is striking. Alongside a tight-knit group of friends like Koa Rothman, Nathan Florence, Kai Lenny, and others, Kemper is on the forefront of the big wave paddle movement.

That’s why Occy sat down with him for the most recent episode of the Occ-Cast. They talked about a lot of things, and a few things were made clear: Kemper is a humble, down-to-earth man who just happens to ride waves that almost everyone else would run from at top speed. And he does it for a very good reason: he simply loves chasing enormous surf.


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