Back To Top
Beach Grit

mobile banner

Yikes: Is this your greatest ever fear?

Chas Smith

by Chas Smith

Derek Dunfee and a gorgeous cold water slam!

What is your greatest fear in surfing? Is it sharks? That you are sitting out there in the lineup and things go quiet…a swirl maybe, a brush. No, it is your imagination. There is nothing beneath you. Sharks don’t kill┬ápeople, people do…and then you see his eyes and his gaping mouth! ARGH!

Or what about this… You are locked deep into a grand barrel, your last wave of the day in a far away 3rd world land. The tide has been dropping steadily and you should have taken one in 30 minutes ago but the ocean went completely flat. But now there is this gem and you are steezy and style and ARGH! A patch of dry reef ahead! Stitches for sure! In a far away 3rd world land!

Or what about this… You are out at Mavericks and you put your head down and paddle so hard, popping to your feet and ready to set your rail… But you can’t set your rail. The wind. That damned wind! And now you are falling, falling, falling, bouncing off the icy cement northern Californians call “water” and the wave is landing on top of you and ouch and tombstone tombstone not breathing.


Let’s watch the very handsome Derek Dunfee live your nightmare!

Tombstoning: A demonstration by Derek Dunfee from Derek Dunfee on Vimeo.

But what is my greatest fear in surfing? Oh. Easy. Walking out on some rocks during a mid-sized day, preparing to jump and accidentally slipping. Getting rolled around for a few minutes while those on the shore film. Having it posted to Instagram.

Worse than losing an arm to shark, a back to reef or a life to drown.