Surfer Watching on Lake Superior

There was a southwesterly wind that passed through our area this week. I love when the storms pass through because the waves on Lake Superior grow very larger and look spectacular when they crash into the sides of some rocky islands. Big waves also mean surfers are often spotted playing off of different beaches around the lake. Yesterday, we stopped to watch a group surfing at Stoney Point. 

When we arrived, there were two guys coming out of the water with a thin layer of ice coating their dry suits. Their eyebrows sparkled with tiny ice bits and their faces were red from the cold. My husband thought this looked fun. I immediately felt the pain of the cold seep into my bones. 

A few of people rode the waves standing. Only a handful rode the wave to its completion and coast into shore. I noticed the surfers would ride one wave in and get out to warm up before going back into the water. A few rode the waves by laying on their boards. I think this was a wise move to lower the chances of falling into the water, especially for newbies. 

Here’s a YouTube video from one the surfers from the weekend.

I’ve surfed one time so far in my life and that was off the coast of Maui. I managed to stand up to ride waves as often as I fell. I loved the feel of catching the wave and riding it to shore. I imagine that feeling of coasting on the wave is what keeps the surfers on Lake Superior going out. It’s the only place in Minnesota you can surf and unfortunately, it can only be done in the winter, when the water is more tumultuous.

The waves I surfed were much smaller than what we watched on the lake on Saturday, but I’d rather start with small warm waves, in shallower water, where the worst that will happen when falling off the board is a few scrapes and cuts. Surfing Lake Superior takes a bit of a crazy mindset that I don’t wish to adopt, but completely understand. Maybe that’s part of the reason I don’t want to try it because I’d probably learn to endure the freezing cold and torture myself because of the love of riding the wave mixed with the strong dislike of being cold. 

I enjoy watching the surfers, whether I’m up here in the frozen area of Northern Minnesota or on a warm sandy beach. The skill some surfers have is a pleasure to watch. I’m glad they’re willing to make the sacrifice to get the layer of ice on their bodies and icicles on their eyebrows and beards (if they have one) for the public’s entertainment. 

On the writing front, I’m still writing my romance novel set along the North Shore. I’m hoping to have the draft finished by the end of the month. 

I hope everyone stays warm.

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