Pro Surfer Garrett McNamara premiered a flick at Surfer, The Bar. He describes what it was like on the monster wave that rode him into record books.
And check this out...he says there's 'Much Bigger Waves" around there but that he cant tell us...(it's cool, just show us the video and photo G Mac! And we'll watch from the safety of our computors.
Hit up Garrett's website HERE
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Garrett McNamara is a citizen of the world. He walks the land as an ordinary man, but what he does in the ocean is anything but ordinary.
At a time when big-wave riding has reached new heights of popularity, a number of surfers have stepped to the front. None of them can surpass McNamara's combination of talent, courage and thirst for the unknown. Overthe past ten years, McNamara has been on a mission to catch the biggest, best waves on the planet, and he has succeeded mightily.
Garrett is arguably the most committed ocean explorer in the world. You just put him in any situation in the water and GMAC is not only ready to go, but go hard! When history scans its memory banks prominent, important images take front and center: Surviving the monstrous barrel at Jaws during the winter of 2003, leaving everyone in awe, being one of only 2 human beings ever to ride tsunami waves generated by calving glaciers in Alaska in the summer of 2007(and quite possibly the last!), going deeper in the barrel than anyone has ever gone at Teahupoo, and surviving the horrible wipe outs that come along with his approach. The list goes on, from stand up paddle surfing at Mavericks to winning nearly every tow contest and big wave award out there. Garrett Moore McNamara’s journey to the reality he now lives in began far from the ocean in Pittsfield, Massachusetts.
Garrett was born far from the ocean in Pittsfield, Massachusetts in the summer of 1967. His predilection for daredevil feats was established early. At 11 months, he launched himself out of his booster seat, which happened to be on top of the kitchen counter. He survived the crash with nothing more than a bump on the head but this set the tone for the future. Cut to thirty years later and Garrett is hurling himself off the precipice of heaving fifty-foot ledges.
In 1978 Garrett’s family moved to the North Shore of Hawaii. Surfing was like a force that overtook his life. His brother Liam was the first to establish himself as a standout talent, one of the best ever at Pipeline and Rocky Point. Garrett was busy prowling Sunset, Waimea and the outer reefs in search of giant swell. At seventeen, Garrett entered and placed in the prestigious Hawaiian Triple Crown Series. Both brothers began to attract the attention of major sponsors and signed deals with a number of prominent brands in Japan. They spent the next ten years on the competition circuit, traveling and becoming fluent in Japanese. It was the realization of a dream for both brothers.
By the 1980s, younger brother Liam was the first shining star of the family. Liam established himself as one of the best surfers at Pipeline and Rocky Point, the 2 most photographed surf spots in the world at that time.
Garrett was prowling Sunset, Pipeline’s outer reefs and Waimea Bay, looking for bombs and getting hooked on “The Rush.” At 17 years old, Garrett contemplated more education because he had no idea what he would do after he graduated. Half way through his senior year his sponsor at that time entered him in the Hawaiian Triple Crown. Garrett made the main event and won his first taste of surfing for money. At that time if you accepted money you became a pro, so Garrett's future was determined. Through the 80s and the 90s, Garrett and Liam were big in Japan, sponsored by Peekaboo clothing, YU Surfboard and the Murasaki sport store chain. Learning to speak Japanese and pursuing their passions, a dream come true.
Life was good and comfortable but Garrett had other ambitions, in the early 1990s an alternative path began to appear like magic, when boats and then Personal Water Craft enabled surfers to chase down and catch giant waves that were thought impossible, beyond the bounds of surfers paddling with their bare hands. Tow surfing was just the thing for Garrett: non-stop action that provided The Rush in ways the surfing world couldn’t imagine. Into the new century, surfers around the world were raising the bar on what could be ridden and survived.
Garrett stepped to the forefront of that movement. By the summer of 2002, Garrett had two main goals so he wrote them down and how to achieve them:
#1 Win the Eddie Aikau Invitational
#2 win the Tow Surfing World Cup at Jaws.
Those goals forced a split decision in the winter of 2002/2003, when they ran the Eddie and the Tow Championships on the same day. Garrett had to choose, and hindsight indicates he chose wisely.
He flew to Maui to meet his partner Rodrigo Resende. Competing in 70-foot surf that Garrett admits was “terrifying”, Garrett and Resende won and took home the $70,000 purse, which is still the largest purse ever won in any surfing event. The goal was achieved and his new life began. Garrett proved it wasn’t a fluke by following up the World Contest with a tow-in session at giant Teahupoo, netting him a dramatic barrel shot that graced the covers of major surf magazines around the world.
Not content to rest, Garrett continued to push the envelope. In 2003 he towed into a monster at Jaws.
“After the contest at Jaws I felt I had unfinished business out there,” Garrett said. I wanted to get barreled.” The following winter In December of 2003, Garrett was floating around in the channel at Jaws when Dane Kealoha came by and threw him the rope, into a lineup with at least 25 hungry aggressive tow teams on PWCs. To Garrett's surprise Uncle Dane headed strait out and did a U turn through the whole crowd. He whipped Garrett into the first wave of the set – a wave that challenged every inch and second of Garrett’s surfing experience. Garrett was at the bottom looking up thinking this is it this is what I've been trying to get my whole big wave, life a 20' barrel, when a megaton lip brushed his head. It should have crushed him and everyone thought it did. He was gone, done for. The wave then spit another couple tons of compressed water, and to the amazement of everyone he emerged in a blaze of glory, like a seal getting chomped up by a giant shark and some how escaping. Garrett’s monster barrel at Jaws hasn’t been surpassed since.
Garrett is at home in the ocean and has carved out his niche; he has been blessed many times over and gives all the glory to God.
In the summer of 2007, Garrett and partner Keali’I Mamala pushed big-wave boundaries even further. Traveling to one of the most inhospitable climates in the world, the two big-wave surfers found themselves off the coast of South-Central Alaska, hoping to surf Tsunami waves formed by calving glaciers. “It was the heaviest rush sitting out there, dwarfed by this enormous 300’ glacier,” recalls Garrett, “We were just waiting for the whole thing to crash down in front of us and hoping we would survive when it did.” A feature film about their experience is currently in production.
Predictably, Garrett can’t leave well enough alone. In the past few years, he has dedicated himself to yet another pursuit—Stand Up Paddle. What drew him to the sport was the fitness aspect—Garrett attributes much of his improved core strength to his paddle regimen. And Garrett being Garrett, he’s added his own twist to the emerging sport, taking SUPs into monstrous slabs at big-wave venues like Waimea, Puerto Escondido, even Mavericks. In June of 2009, the International Surfing Association invited Garrett to compete in the World Stand Up Paddle Surfing Championship. Garrett was one of only 32 elite watermen invited to attend the event.
He is still on a mission to explore the world’s ocean for the best and biggest waves Mother Nature has to offer. In 2010 Garrett discovered the geographic phenomenon, The North Canyon, off the coast of Portugal. These are the largest waves Garrett has found to date and for the next three years will be working with the government on an on going project.
For all his accolades, for all his accomplishments, for all his big-wave bravado Garrett remains humble and unassuming. With none of the posturing and attitude one usually expects of extreme sports athletes, Garrett almost seems at odds with his public persona. This makes him approachable and a stand out citizen, always looking to give back anyway he can.