Surfing the Arctic Tundra


She’s cold, harsh, treacherous, but by god is the Arctic part of the world beautiful.

What these gents lack in hi-fi surf skills they more than make up for by being crazy fucking Russians and camping in the Arctic Tundra. Filmed over a year in the Murmansk region, which is extreme north east Russia, this film documents some of the first attempts at surfing in the region; not surprising considering that the waves look pretty average, and the temp, as cold as it gets. But the fact that the Ruski’s went there and done did it is commendable to say the least.

The film’s a little bit Zissou, sprinkled with a fair—but bearable—amount of cheese, incredible insights into growing up in Russia, and it’s really beautifully shot. We’ve all seen the Northern Lights a million times, but we’ll be damned if she doesn’t still sparkle on Vimeo. The chaps unfortunately don’t score epic waves, and they’d be the first to admit that they’re not the best surfers in the world. But they’ve got real travel props, and snowboard pretty well.

As surfing becomes more or less completely overrun, expect to see more and more exploration of the colder corners of the globe. While it might touch the inner surf-romantic in all of us, be warned. Unless (and even if) you grew in Russia like these dudes, surfing in sub-zero temperatures, hurts. Like, get me out of here I can’t feel my face, hurts. Not saying that you shouldn’t head off into the great white yonder or anything, but don’t say that you weren’t warned.

If, like us, you’re fascinated by men who search for happiness in obscure and freezing parts of the world, see Chris Burkhard’s Ted talk here. The guy’s made a living from freezing his tits off.

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