The Wave: In Pursuit of the Rogues, Freaks and Giants of the by Susan Casey

By Susan Casey

From Susan Casey, bestselling writer of The Devil’s Teeth, an miraculous e-book approximately colossal,  ship-swallowing rogue waves and the surfers who search them out.

For centuries, mariners have spun stories of gargantuan waves, 100-feet excessive or taller. till lately scientists dis­missed those stories—waves that prime would appear to violate the legislation of physics. yet long ago few many years, as a startling variety of ships vanished and new proof has emerged, oceanographers discovered anything frightening was once brewing within the planet’s waters. they discovered their evidence in February 2000, while a British learn vessel was once trapped in a vortex of impossibly gigantic waves within the North Sea—including a number of that approached a hundred feet.

As scientists scramble to appreciate this phenomenon, others view the large waves because the final problem. those are severe surfers who fly around the globe attempting to trip the ocean’s such a lot harmful monsters. The pioneer of maximum browsing is the mythical Laird Hamilton, who, with a gaggle of pals in Hawaii, discovered find out how to board suicidally huge waves of 70 and eighty toes. Casey follows this exact tribe of peo­ple as they search to overcome the holy grail in their game, a 100­-foot wave.

In this spell binding account, the exploits of Hamilton and his fellow surfers are juxtaposed opposed to scientists’ pressing efforts to appreciate the harmful powers of waves—from the tsunami that burnt up 250,000 humans within the Pacific in 2004 to the 1,740-foot-wave that lately leveled a part of the Alaskan coast.

Like Jon Krakauer’s Into skinny Air, The Wave brilliantly portrays humans confronting nature at its so much ferocious.

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Extra info for The Wave: In Pursuit of the Rogues, Freaks and Giants of the Ocean

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They tinkered with equipment. They refined their techniques. Working in teams of two—a driver and a rider—they figured out how to rescue each other in behemoth surf. As the stakes got higher and the margin for error got slimmer, a kind of natural selection occurred. Riders who’d glimpsed their own mortality a little too closely drifted to the sidelines. At the other end of that spectrum was Hamilton. Watching him, you got the feeling that no wave was out of reach. The more intimidating the conditions, the more he seemed to thrive in them.

Any surfer who fell at Jaws wasn’t getting out of there alone. There was a brief window, maybe a fifteen-second interval between waves, in which a driver had to sight his partner’s head in the churning foam, dart in on the Jet Ski, grab him, and get out before the next wave came hurtling down. ) It soon became clear that not everyone was up to the task. People froze on the sidelines, or pretended to be very busy elsewhere while their partners floundered in the impact zone. “There were the guys who would come get you and the guys who wouldn’t come get you,” Hamilton said.

Unpleasant, perhaps, but not especially dramatic—until three o’clock in the afternoon, when an eighty-five-foot wave came careening over the horizon and walloped the rig at forty-five miles per hour. While the Draupner sustained only moderate damage, the proof was there. This wasn’t a case of laser malfunction or too many aquavit toasts the night before. It was the first confirmed measurement of a freak wave, more than twice as tall and steep as its neighbors, a teetering maniac ripping across the North Sea.

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