Nathan Florence spends a lot of time in the water at Pipeline. His surfing makes it pretty clear, doesn’t it? In the last few years, he’s well and truly stepped out from John John’s long shadow, and he’s done it by being hilariously pleasant and freakishly talented. Since he spends so much time in the water at Pipeline, Nathan Florence also spends a lot of time under the water at Pipeline. Decidedly less fun than spending time in the tube, but a necessary evil. And since Nathan Florence lives off stacking those clips, we’re lucky enough to get glimpses into what it’s like both inside the tube at Pipeline and under the water at Pipeline. Case in point: this raw footage from Pipe that includes a crazy beatdown that looks… awful.
“Hey, it’s going to get too big real fast,” Nathan says a few minutes into the video. That’s a sentence that encapsulates surfing on the North Shore: a normal session can quickly turn into a terrifying one. In a matter of minutes, the swell there can pick up to sizes that are not for the faint of heart. Luckily, though, Nathan is not faint of heart.