Surf greats risk crocs to ride wave

Surf greats risk crocs to ride wave

Published Apr. 13, 2011 1:00 a.m. ET

Three-time world surfing champion Tom Curren and Australian surfer Dean Brady have completed an extraordinary 10-mile ride down an Indonesian river wave where the prowling crocodiles provide motivation to stay on your board, The Australian reported Wednesday.

California-born Curren, 46, and Brady, 25, took part in the groundbreaking surfing expedition to northern Sumatra, where their team caught a wave that lasted 55 minutes down the Kampar River, known to the locals as Seven Ghosts.

Tidal surges produced a once-a-day push of waves in the remote river, which they explored in boats before taking to their boards.

"There's driftwood everywhere because the waves just tear apart the river bank," Brady told The Australian.


But the driftwood came alive, he added.

"Another guy said 'Look out, I think there's a croc.' I told the driver to go up closer and have a look. I freaked -- this thing was about 4m [13ft]. It was bigger than the rubber ducky [boat] we were in."

Brady' admitted he at first thought the expedition must be some sort of joke -- but he ended up surfing the most surreal waves of his life. He surfed Seven Ghosts for five days, with the waves arriving like clockwork daily.

Curren, Brady and their Rip Curl Search team, which also included surfers Oney Anwar and Tyler Larronde, had been traveling the world for several months looking for new surf spots when they discovered the incredible wave.

Curren told Surfer Today Seven Ghosts was the longest wave he has ever surfed.

"It's the most amazing Search trip in 20 years," said Curren.