After two non-surfers asked me if I had seen the Los Angeles Times front page article about ‘surfing slabs’, I figured that I better go re-introduce myself to the local newspaper.
While I thought it was cute that my non-surfer friends used the surf colloquialism of ‘slabs’, it became apparent through these conversations that my friends thought these surfers had evolved from wave riders to ‘slab’ riders. Just to clear up any confusion, a ‘slab’ is just a wave. And a surfer would ride a ‘slab’ like any other wave. However, if you are a surfer and you claim that you rode a ‘slab’, it better be thick, powerful and throwing.
The LA Times article is a mix of surf exploration, surf science and a look inside the life of Hawaiian big-wave pioneer Garrett McNamara. While the LA Times article is worth reading, the story is further clarified with the video below. The video offers footage of Garrett McNamara surfing glacier-made waves in Alaska as well as him charging Jaws and Teahupoo.