McNamara Slays the Biggest Wave Ever Surfed


NAZARE, Portugal – Big wave surfer Garrett McNamara bagged one of the biggest waves captured on film in Portugal on November 1st. Invited by the government to investigate the site for a big wave competition, McNamara and fellow big wave rider Andrew Cotton were in the right place at the right time.

Praia do Norte beach in Navare, Portugal is known for the watery monsters that lurch into 300-foot cliffs; a suicide-wave that requires precision, guts, and just a dash of insanity to successfully ride when in its angriest mood. Funneled by a 1,000-foot deep canyon in the ocean that runs right up to the cliffs, the waves can easily reach over 50 feet in height when swell conditions are prime.

Skilled in big wave riding, McNamara initially decided to back off and not ride the giants rolling through, “we went round and I just wasn’t feeling it that much.” But after being talked into it, he decided to strap on his board and grab the tow rope attached to his partner’s jet ski.

Setting himself up on a massive set, McNamara dropped into a wave that just kept getting bigger and bigger until it became a liquid skyscraper, pushing its way towards the cliffs and carrying the tiny surfer on its face.

“I started making the bottom turn and I felt the lip hit me. You can see it in the video. Usually I don't have time to look around but you see me look round twice and then I get hit by the white water on the shoulder and it feels like a ton of bricks. I've been hit like that before and I'm thinking: I've got to make this,” said McNamara.



Last modified onSunday, 13 November 2011 14:45
Morgan Becker

After spending the first part of her life in Minnesota, Morgan traded in her snow boots for sandals and moved to sunny California. After graduating with a degree in Communication from The University of Southern California, she eventually made her way down south to San Diego and is taking advantage of the living by the best beaches and burritos California has to offer. If it’s sunny, you can find her at the beach relaxing, or exploring the calm water in the bay via paddleboards and kayaks.

Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.