Home Turnagain Arm Surfing The Arm
Barrel On The Dordogne Courtesy Fabrice Colas And Phillipe Garrigues
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The Turnagain Arm tidal bore was first ridden by kayakers over 20 years ago. But it is only in the last three that surfers have started riding the wave. A group of local Girdwood surfers, John Markel, Mark Wisdorf, Paul Wunnicke and Lolly Moss first rode the wave in October 1998 and continue to do so. In fact, for several years previously they had searched the Arm for the perfect wave.

The wave generally varies from a four to six foot face, can surge upto ten foot, and was seen at close to fifteen foot on the large tides of 98/99.

The wave runs for many miles and it is possible to surf it for a long time, but for most of its course it is broken white water. So the locals tend to head for the deeper channels, near Girdwood, where glassy shoulders can be ridden for a couple of miles.

The recently constructed Seaward Highway, from Anchorage to Seaward, runs along the Arm's shores, and so the surfers can normally ride at two locations on each tide.