SURFER surf videos – ON THOSE CROWDED BLUEBIRD DAYS AT FIRST PEAK a clean, pulsing north swell in the water, a gentle west wind kissing the wedging peak’s pencil-thin lips—you could hear a sound—pop pop pop pop—as sets approached the viper-pit pack, pinballing through the jetty’s pilings. The East Coast’s best surfers knew it well, heard it in their dreams. Ask Kelly Slater; he remembers. Or Jeff Crawford, if you can find him. Mike Tabeling heard it on his way out. For nearly 40 years, Sebastian Inlet groomed more champion surfers than perhaps any wave on the planet, responsible for eight Pipe Masters wins, 16 world titles, and countless major East Coast, national, and World Championship event wins, not to mention dozens and dozens of local, underground, world-class surfers filling in the gaps. Then, in the early 2000s, repairs and renovations to the jetty caused the wave to disappear almost overnight. In its absence, Florida hasn’t produced a single World Tour surfer, let alone a world- title threat.
“I miss Sebastian, truly,” says Slater, First Peak’s prodigal son. “I’d do anything to bring it back to its glory.”