Senior Editor

The Inertia

When it comes to surfing the heaviest slabs in Australia, Kerby Brown is one of the best there is. He’s attracted to waves that most people would turn tail and run from.

“The waves that appeal to me — the waves I’m trying to surf — they’re called slab waves, basically,” he told ABC News Australia. “They’re just these short, intense, thick chunks of ocean. They’re really unique and really unpredictable kind of waves. Because there’s not much water under them and there’s so much volume of water that bends around the reef, they can be real dangerous.”

He’s had his fair share of injuries because of the waves he chases. One particularly bad one ripped a huge chunk of his scalp from his skull. The photos are graphic. But he found that moving away from a life that revolves around surfing “amplified the self-destruction.”

It led to a period of his life that was far darker than he would have liked. Thankfully, though, he was able to pull himself out and get back to what’s really important to him in life: surfing waves that only a few human beings on Earth can surf.


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