Chile Portfolio


about this series

I first visited Chile in 1993.  I had no idea where to go to find surf - there was almost no information about the 3,000 plus miles of coastline.  Our exploration started off a bit shaky, but on that first trip we eventually landed in Pichilemu, which delivered the goods, to a level I don't think I had ever seen at that point in my life.  I surfed a day at Punta de Lobos that must have been five times overhead, solo, on a 7'6 board that was way too small.  I caught only one wave that day, but it was one of the most memorable waves of my life.

I went back every year after that, exploring more and more regions, to the south and the north, and surfing some waves before any other surfers had.  One year I was invited on a trip with Patagonia owner Yvon Chouinard, and found myself foraging for surf with many of the surfing elite - such as Gerry Lopez, the Malloy brothers, and Jack Johnson.  I forged friendships with some of them that led to many other fantastic trips around the globe.

A few years later I returned with Joao Valente (my brother from another mother), editor of Surf Portugal Magazine and best of friends, and had yet another amazing adventure.  This was just a year before the earthquake and tsunami that devastated much of the coastline we had visited, oblivious to the danger that lurked just offshore.  Save The Waves was the first organization on the ground after the tsunami hit this region - and Chile program director Josh Berry positively impacted the lives of thousands of coastal dwelling Chileans, with the help of a dedicated crew.

We produced a short film about the plight of Southern Chile's Mapuche population against pulp mill pollution called "All Points South."  Save The Waves continues to work in Chile to help preserve the beaches and surf zone.