One of the best/worst feelings in all of surfing is realizing that a big set is on its way. The lineup, silent save for maybe a single shrill whistle of warning or appreciation, begins scratching towards the horizon, all angling for a piece of the incoming wave. It’s usually the surfer who’s been waiting too far out the back who’ll get it, and everyone else sitting inside watches, green with envy, as they duck dive through it. But then there’s the wave behind it. It’s bigger. It’s faster. And despite the fact that you just paddled until your lungs burned, you still aren’t out there far enough. Like I said, it’s one of the best/worst feelings in all of surfing.
Nate Florence is a man experienced in paddling very hard for very large waves. He somewhat recently surfed a maxed-out slab, a wave that most wouldn’t want a part of – with only a few other people willing to pay the price of admission. There’s always a bigger one behind it, as they say, and that was certainly the case here. But from the looks of it, it was totally worth it.