No one knows who first rode a wave simply for the pleasure of the act. It could have been a Stone Age fisherman on a log raft or in a dugout canoe. Perhaps it was a swimmer, someone bodysurfing a wave, thrilled by the experience, and swimming out to do it again. And it could have happened most anywhere in the world where man engaged the ocean.
From that humble beginning, surfing has grown exponentially. Today it is estimated that there are over twenty million surfers worldwide, practicing the sport in wildly diverse lands and cultures. Yet no matter where they are, the surfers stand apart. They share the same attitudes and passions, and are connected in a fundamental way. Surfing has in fact become a global tribe.
The development of that tribe is the focus of this book: how wave riding began, how it progresses, and how it grew to become an international cultural phenomenon. It is a surprising story, filled with twists and turns and a host of fascinating characters.