Battle at Cortes

Images of triumph and near-tragedy from Cortes Bank

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| posted on December 26, 2012
  • Mango

    I am so proud of you guys who did the job the right way. You saved your fellow brother of the ocean from dieing. I am in the same breath so angry at you Garrett that you have not make a public apology for your gross miscalculation of judgement both in an out of the water. Do us all a favor and keep the wave jet board out of the water.
    To ditch the ski and risk your own life to save your surf brother is what aquatic gladiators of made. You guys have jumped to the top of the pecking order of respect with me.
    Get well God Speed GL.

  • Jimmy the Dong

    Nice pics and a delicate description of GMac’s now infamous burn…”Greg straightened his line to make way for GMac…” tread lightly…

    Will Surfer Mag seek to get Greg and GMac’s views on the WaveJet Burn™?

    Or will that be stepping on toes for one of your biggest, annoying banner ad buyers?

  • tillish bazooka

    I am not Gmacs greatest fan here, but who says he was on one of those wave jets? wipeouts happen just like that…

  • Dante Rondo

    Since i was not there to witness what went down on that wave shared with GM and Greg Long…I wonder if Greg would have made the wave out of the white water section if GM was not out on the shoulder…? I only see one photo in the group of the wave they were both on…Obviously Greg is deeper and would have the “Right of way”. I guess people can blame GM…But the heroics of fellow watermen carrying out the rescue and the survival of one of the best big wave chargers on the planet (Greg Long) is the positive side of this Cortes Bank session !!!

  • sid abruzzi

    DK WALSH Legend

  • ivan

    These guys share big waves all of the time. Does it matter if it’s a boogie-board, wave jet, sup, bodysurfer,…? If they both made the wave nobody would care. Greg nearly drowned because he made the choice to train and surf giant waves. You can just sit in that line-up and suffer the same fate. Congratulate the guys that are giving us the entertainment and saving each other’s lives.

  • MIk

    I totally admire Garret, and his abilities, and I respect his need for income… But Wavejets are not surfboards, and riding them is not surfing… they are small Jetski’s and IMO they are for kooks. Frankly, it’s lame that their advertisements are welcome in the surf media, because they have no place in surfing. Surfing is about oneness with the ocean. We don’t need motors to surf. Tow-in surfing, is a small niche, and I accept its life saving value, 100%. But Wavejets???? Just some goofy idea that is all about how a machine company can profit from surfing, while diminishing its aesthetic value. Surfing really isn’t for kooks who can’t paddle. It’s for dedicated athletes who are willing to pay the price it takes to be in shape to do it well. Again, money is money, but there are lines that separate class from lame. And unequivocally, Wavejets are lame.

  • Mike I

    Here is my take! The wave jet is a non issue. Its just a lil boost /aid, not a boat. its really slow, not fast enought to even stand up on on flat water. As for the burn. the waves at this size are ok to share on, just like mavs, the bay or other massive spots. Sux Greg had 2 eat it, it happens.Glad hes ok! BTw THE WAVE JET IS A GREAT TOOL FOR DISABLED SURFERS!

  • Jimmy the Saint

    Mike 1 – I accept that wavjets and SUPs can be used by both the disabled and those with shoulder injuries, but if you have four functioning limbs their is no excuse to use either to hog waves in a lineup. There is some wavejet ad with Cory Lopez with some stupid tag line “I catch twice as many waves as my friends – on my wavejet”. If my friend turned up to surf in a lineup with one of those and started getting twice as many waves as me, well i’d have to start dropping in on him. Luckly they cost a fortune and I have never seen one yet, but dropping in on someone on a wave jet is like dropping in on a kayaker, or SUPer, normal rules of decency no longer apply IF (and only if) they are hogging waves. I look forward to Wavejets next ad campaign with GMAC. “Gmac drops in on Jesse Billaur – on his SUP, Gmac drops in on Greg Long – on his Wavejet”. Sometimes you have to question the decision taken by companies to sponsor guys that are universally loathed in the surfing world to endorse their product, but I think Wavejet and Gmac are a perfect match. An almost universally loathed Surfer (GMAC) endorsing an almost universally loathed product – the wavejet. Sorry this is a rant about the wavejet – I don’t know Gmac, and I am only basing my opinion on him from what I have read over the years, and on the comment boards in relation to the Cortes Bank incident… but I think he should consider getting himself a Jerry Maguire type guy to promote a fairer and more sensitive image.

  • jdb

    Aaron Gold looks he was scoring bombs all over the place…good on ya!

  • Jake

    write wavejet, i just did. told them how ashamed they should be of their product and that they should have gmac issue an apology to greg. immediately after requesting that I realized there was no use because gmac doesn’t know how to read or write…

  • Nicole

    Jake- I guess you can’t read very well because on the home page of is Garrett McNamara’s public statement
    You obviously can’t write either! Take a look at your punctuation and grammar.

  • Turpentine

    I’ve never surfed a wavejet (and don’t plan to) so I don’t know if this made a difference, but gmac looks out of control and doesn’t turn and this forced Greg into the white water. He cuts Greg off and then forces him back into white water. This is bad behavior in any size surf and he should address it or stay out of crowded heavy situations

  • Cortes surfer

    As one who knows that lineup very well and the players involved I concur with following statement made by Jerry on the GMAC statement link:

    Yes people take off on each other at waimea. at cortes it doesnt have to happen, and shouldn’t happen, especially not on a very heavy, unproven, semi-uncontrollable craft. When you bring something like that into the lineup you need to be extremely careful not to endanger anyone else. Gmac was not. but then Gmac is never considerate of others in the lineup and never has been and here we have more proof. The most important safety skill of all in big surf is being aware of what is going on around you. The playing field out there is big and wide open with no visual obstruction except your own ego. The chances that he didn’t know greg was behind him are near zero. He’s just one of those people who never quite made it as a pro surfer so he keeps trying to be the “big man” at lesser and more marginal aspects of surfing. First towing, then sup and now jet boarding or whatever that idiotic thing is called. They really picked the perfect spokesman to sum up that activity. It’s pretty sad really. I talked to one of the surfers out that day and he said garret was his usual self charging around on his power assisted board being a greedy selfish ass.

  • Jake

    Nicole- sorry English is not my first language. Also the only advice I will every take from a women is how to make better cooking jajaja. Get back in the kitchen and make me some food! Also are you good looking with large seios?? How is gmacs baby d taste?

  • Bruce sanchez

    It’s good to see these guys ralling up and making the trip out there. It’s 100 miles in the middle of no where. Who cares what who was riding at least no one towed into a wave. Good to see the long time hardcore underground nut case chargers like chapman Murphy getting in on the action too. It’s about time we see some of those guys get some of the credit!!!

  • Mik

    The thing about Wavejet is simple. Surfing is unique, in that it is a very simple, pure sport. Riding a wave via the wave energy is what makes it magic. As a surfer elder, I do not want to see line-ups full of motorized surfboards. It’s a black and white issue. I also dont want to see Jetskis in a small surf line-up. But I do understand an accept Jetski driven tow ins, when appropriate, and the use of a Jetski for lifeguard use in big surf, or any surf where it saves life. I’m also cool with using them in contests, where the WCT pros deem it functional. But Wavejets???? Sorry. They are a potential menace to the sport and they need to be spoken out against.

    Now Garret: I sincerely admire the guy, and the more he writes about his surfing, the more I like him. It appears to be a human mistake, and Greg Long has made it clear that he is OK with Garret. So, Wavejet endorsement aside, I respect Garret’s ability and achievements.

    And I’m stoked Greg was surrounded by such amazing friends and support crew. Wishing him a full and speedy recovery!!!

  • Richard fitzwell

    Most u hating on gmac couldn’t hold his wax comb. If someone wanted to pay u thousands to ride a board u would too. Good ups on those guys going 100 miles in the middle if no where to surf death bombs and not towing in. Nice to see underground chargers like chapman getting some bombs too. So quit hating on big wave surfers and go after real pussies like rasta and Craig Anderson. Lloyd a real alter boy too!!

  • joe

    that was a statement nicole, not an apology. maybe YOU should learn how to read and write, and probably to think too

  • http://nuts4bolts mike

    Re WaveJet:
    I have a spinal disababilty other than just being old. I’m a 62 yr old surfer w 50 yrs surfing experience under my belt. My best days are behind me but I just can’t seem to get off the board on ocassion. I’m about ready to hang it up, the surfboard that is. I have 4 working limbs but also have neuropathy, multiple joint issues, spinal issues.arthritis, and issues with tendons in my arms n shoulders. When the waves are small to medium I just have the desire to still go out. The wavejet sounds like possibly the ticket for me. I don’t want to hog waves, just get a few good ones. I’m a surfer, can I help it?
    Listen up surfers…Probably most of my issues have come from surfing! My goal was to surf till I’m 80. I’m beat up but I’m still in descent shape otherwise. Hope I can afford it, here I come Wavejet. There is a place for WJ, maybe you’ll be singing the same tune someday. I have paid the price, I just need a few more waves brah… Nuts4Bolts

  • 92007

    DK Walsh,,,,nice job bro!!!
    you can drop in on me anytime!

  • Dante Rondo

    Rasta a “Pussie” ? Really ? Who ever that writes this crap maybe has forgotten just how much Rasta has walked his talk ! With a lot of involvement with Sea Shepard, and trying to save Dolphins and Whales , including his attempt (With friends) to block the slaughter of Dolphins in the documentry “The Cove” in S. Japan. And “Pussie” really ? What about his stellar performance and carving at Big Jaws a few years back ! There will always be haters , like the idiot that writes such crap ! Get a life ! Yours could will never match the work Rasta has done for the global ocean environment and it’s living beings !