Women’s big wave surfing is having a moment, in case you haven’t noticed. Since surfers first began sending themselves over heaving ledges of water from Waimea to Sunset Beach, women have been there too, albeit in fewer numbers. And so, the history of women’s big wave surfing has developed concurrently with men’s, but with less coverage and less money. Until lately, that is.
In a February issue of the New York Times Magazine, Paige Alms occupies the cover, dropping in on a Maverick’s screamer. The image is pulled in, so it’s hard to get a sense of scale of the wave itself, but Alms’ body language is everything – she’s staring down the barrel of her drop focused. Clenching even. On a surfboard well into the eight-foot-plus range.
Alms is among the group of female big wave surfers who fought tooth and nail to make equal pay a reality at the WSL’s Maverick’s Challenge – the League ultimately instituted equal pay across its multiple tours. Beyond that, she’s committed to literally pushing women’s big wave surfing to new heights, with two Pe’ahi Challenge wins and back-to-back Big Wave Tour titles under her belt.
If the trailer above is any indication, Alms’ forthcoming biopic, simply titled Paige, will no doubt be a compelling one. The Maui-raised charger is easily one of my faves, if I’m being honest.
You can check out an interview we did with Alms back in January here.