Urban surfing

26 marzo 2007

Any day of the week, a person who walked by the city of Munich, could easily find this scene:

It is not a fake or a joke. The video is recorded in the heart of the city, at the River Eisbach, hundreds of kilometers away from the next coast line. The history of surfing in Munich goes back into the year 1972, when a small group of surfers found this natural and standing riverwave.

The location is at the Eisbach, which translates to 'ice river', just inside the Englischer Garten in Munich. The standing wave can be surfed the whole year, but the water is always very cold.

Well known and internationally recognized surfers started their careers in Munich. Techniques and manovers were adapted from surfing in the sea and tricks like aerials, 360s and floaters are common on the riverwave.

Nowadays, surfing is a very popular sport in Munich and they celebrate an international festival, the Munich Surf Open, which takes place in the natural wave of the river "Floßlände". Famous names in riversurfing come for the festival every year.

Talking again about the Eisbach spot, the river flows out of a tunnel under the city. And surfers must be careful, as the rock is only about 40cm below the surface.

Curiously, the surfing is not allowed at the Eisbach and the sign you can see in the picture reads: surfing and bathing is forbidden. But it seems quite difficult to forbid anything when people is having such a great time.

More info and sources: 1, 2, 3, 4 / See also: Pororoca: surfing the Amazon