Friday, September 24, 2010

Surf's Up

In December 2007, at a break called "Egypt" in Maui, Hamilton and
Brett Lickle accomplished tow-surfing's equivalent of climbing Everest
when they managed to ride a freakish swell of 100-foot waves. They
survived that terrifying day, but only barely. After successfully
riding one of these powerhouses, Lickle had his leg sashimied top to
bottom, turning the thundering whitewater red. As he bled and neared
death, a Herculean rescue effort by Hamilton saved him. The price of
the day was high. An emotional retelling by Hamilton reveals he may
have glimpsed something he fears more than death: "being pounded so
bad that psychologically you don't recover." Lickle has never
tow-surfed giant waves again.

- from the New York Review of Books review (Sep 19, 2010) of Susan
Casey, The Wave: In Pursuit of the Rogues, Freaks, and Giants of the
Ocean.