Frank Quirarte is on his way to Maverick's, the storied big-wave break 20 minutes south of San Francisco, when his truck -- license plate: MAVSRFR -- blows its radiator. It's a bright, broiling day along the coast, and Quirarte waits for the tow truck to arrive in a steamy pizza parlor in downtown Half Moon Bay, sweating through clothes befitting a photographer for Surfing Magazine: flip-flops, shorts, Quicksilver T-shirt, black wire-rimmed glasses. He's just turned 40, and his hair and goatee are sprinkled with gray. "We're experienced surfers, experienced big-wave guys, and we know when a guy's going to die," says Quirarte. "So we go in and get him and drag him out, whether he likes it or not. If he doesn't have a surfboard, doesn't have a way in, there are so many variables that can get him. Hell, there are... More >>>
During the two dozen or so winter days
when Maverick's gets huge, it produces
waves that retain the hollow, surfable shape
of smaller swells.