Grab your wetsuit and hightail it to California, the not-so-secret home to Kelly Slater's game-changing wave pool. Surf fans have been scrambling to uncover the location of the facility since Saturday, when Kelly posted a video on Facebook (below) that showed him surfing what he called "the first truly world class, high performance, human-made waves." The world champion surfer was coy about the pool's precise coordinates, even as the video racked up more than four million views. In the end, it was Sydney-based surf writer Craig Brokensha who channelled his inner Miss Marple and cracked the case.
Brokensha, who writes for Swellnet, began his investigation on Reddit, where numerous other amateur detectives had already begun cobbling together clues. Cross-referencing photos from Google with telltale landmarks visible in Kelly's video, Brokensha soon narrowed the location down to an old water ski lake near Leemore, around 50 kilometres south of Fresno. "With all the tools freely available to us in this day and age (Google, Google Earth, Google Streetview) it only took an hour or so to confirm the likely location of the test facility," wrote Brokensha. Well isn't someone a bit of a clever pants?
Assuming the new technology is everything Slater claims it to be, its impact on the surf world could be enormous. There have been other attempts to create consistent, cost-effective waves in the past, but success has to this point proved elusive. Slater has promised to reveal more information in the coming weeks. In the meantime, the World Surf League have released a statement declaring that "the ramifications of this reveal are immeasurable at this point, but certainly will change the face of surfing as we know it."
Here's hoping Slater opens the pool up to the public... although that's probably still a ways off yet.
Now that the world title has been decided and events for the year have finished, I’m excited to show you what I’ve been...