Surfing the Tejo River
Proving the lengths that surfers will go to for novel experiences, pro surfer Nico von Rupp recently rode a freak river wave that occurs along the Tejo river in Portugal. The break is created by passing ferries, and varies tremendouly based on luck: the wind and tide as well as the speed and load of the passing vessel have to be just right to create the perfect wave. Von Rupp heard rumors about a man who claimed he had been surfing the wave completely solo for over a decade, and decided immediately to check it out. The spot is about 45 minutes from Lisbon and can only be surfed when the ferry is headed to Lisbon, not on the return trip. Surf culture here is non-existent; waveriders are surrounded by abandoned fish factories from the 1970s.
Waiting for the ferry's daily trip. If they miss it, it'll be a 24-hour wait for the next wave.
Paddling toward the ferry as it heads to Lisbon.
Depending upon many variables including wind, sand banks and tide, the wave's size varies tremendously.
Catching a wave. Von Rupp claims the right conditions create a perfect, fast-moving wave.
Tejo River flows into the ocean near Lisbon.
Surfers have to be ready between 7am - 10am, the only time when conditions create the chance for a surfable break.