The Los Angeles Times just published a fascinating piece and video on the WSL Surf Ranch, a creation of Kelly Slater. WSL is located 100 miles inland from the Pacific Ocean in Lemoore, California, which is 35 miles south of Fresno. From the story:
“In 2006, Slater teamed with Adam Fincham, an associate professor of engineering at USC who specialized in fluid dynamics. They studied aerial footage of beaches across Southern California, Australia and the South Pacific, translating breaks into mathematical equations. Computer simulations led to a small-scale model, each step suggesting they were on the right track, but it would be eight years before construction began.
The 20-acre Lemoore property seemed like a feasible site because the land was cheap and it already had a pair of long, narrow lagoons that had been used for water skiing. The isolation was another plus.
‘It wasn’t on anyone’s radar that we were building here,’ Slater says, adding that ‘if the thing didn’t work, we would scrap it all and never show anyone the footage and pretend it never happened.’
The key to their design was a giant hydrofoil — picture a bright blue locomotive with a snow plow mounted on it, a 200-ton contraption charging along rails at the lagoon’s edge, pushing a wall of water toward a lone surfer.
‘In the ocean, you see the wave from 30 seconds out and you have all these judgments before it gets to you,’ says Kanoa Igarashi, a 20-year-old pro from Huntington Beach who helped test the system’s early versions. ‘Here, the wave pops up out of nowhere. Pretty weird.’
After about two years of fine-tuning, the ranch now generates waves that consistently rise to 6 feet tall and roll the length of seven football fields. They break to the right when the hydrofoil moves in one direction, then left when it makes the return trip.”
Surfers say it can’t beat a perfect wave from Hawaii or Tahiti but that the waves here are perfect and gnarly. Current world champion Tyler Wright says: “You get in wrong spot, you can definitely get water up your nose.”
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
- Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Plus earn up to $50 in statement credits towards grocery store purchases.
- 2X points on dining at restaurants including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out and travel & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- Get 25% more value when you redeem for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel.
- With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories.
- Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on eligible orders over $12 for a minimum of one year with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
- Earn 2x total points on up to $1,000 in grocery store purchases per month from November 1, 2020 to April 30, 2021. Includes eligible pick-up and delivery services.
The comments on this page are not provided, reviewed, or otherwise approved by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered. Editorial Note: The editorial content on this page is not provided by any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.
Editorial Note: The editorial content on this page is not provided by any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.