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Cold Water Stoke Challenge

Monday, February 4th, 2008

Around this time each year it gets harder and harder to convince myself to paddle out. With water temps bottoming out and air temps looking mighty similar to that of the ocean, it becomes increasingly easier finding a reason to pass on a session and wait for the next swell.

Like clockwork though, surf mags and sites start throwing up random shots and articles of die-hards charging snow covered beaches and coming up out of the water with ear to ear grins and icicles creeping down from their hoods, quickly putting a damper on my self-inflicted pity party I throw myself each time I ‘brave’ the icy 57 degree waters of Southern California.

A nothern-euro surf company, Nord Surf, is setting out to harness the energy shared by winter condition chargers with their Cold Water Stoke contest. With rewards of boards and clothing from their recent line, they are encouraging surfers world wide who brave the chilly temps to send in their photos that best illustrate their passion to surf in even the most blustery conditions. In turn they are seeking to end up with a wealth of marketable material illustrating the passion of cold-water warriors everywhere.

Cold: Describes the condition of low temperature or a type of upper respiratory infection.

Water: A common chemical substance that is essential to all known forms of life.

Stoke: A state of mind and necessity to survive in harsh climate.

Even though my shots of dawn-patrol sessions at San Diego breaks are highly unlikely to pull in any swag, I find what Nord Surf is setting out to do pretty interesting. The photos of waves being ridden in these types of conditions typically draw a lot of interest by those flipping through mags, watching videos, or cruising sites. It doesn’t appear that they have gotten the response they are seeking quite yet, however judging by the quality of the shots they have up so far and with the right approach to reaching the masses of ‘lovers of ice cream headaches’ worldwide, Nord Surf may just be able to capitalize on the fact that if waves are rideable, regardless of freezing temps and icy water, surfers will be riding and stoked to tell about it.

nord surf

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