Went over the falls on a 20-foot wave

It was trial and error— lots and lots of error

Fabiano Sarmento: "I have about 15 boards. I'm a little addicted.”
  • Fabiano Sarmento: "I have about 15 boards. I'm a little addicted.”
  • Name: Fabiano Sarmento
  • Age: 29
  • From: Ocean Beach
  • Location: Ocean Beach

On a cloudy day in Ocean Beach, Fabiano Sarmento was walking to the showers with a neon board. “This board belongs to one of my friends who was a local shaper in Brazil, moved to San Diego, and started a business out here. It didn’t quite pan out, so he left me a couple boards. This one’s a mid-range, old school, single fin, retro style. I have probably about 15 boards in my garage.” Sarmento laughs, “I’m a little addicted, in case you can’t tell.”

The 29-year-old has been surfing for 16 years. It all started with a salvaged board. “I got my first board off of some junk yard. I went out with a friend. Both of us were brand new at it, and we just started figuring stuff out. It was trial and error— lots and lots of error.”

Sarmento’s biggest wipeout happened in Hawaii. “I was at Sunset Beach, Oahu, and I went directly over the falls on a 20-foot wave. The wave cracked on top of me and held me under for about five seconds, but it felt like 20 seconds. I came up and took another one straight on my head. That was one of those moments when I could see the bottom and I was thinking, ‘Huh, I may not be able to make it back to the surface in time for this, alright.’”

New Zealand has been one of his favorite surf spots. “It’s big, open wilderness out there. There was nobody around for miles. You definitely feel like you are more out in nature versus surfing in the city. The water’s cold there, but as long as you enjoy venturing around, it’s worth it.”

Share / Tools

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google+
  • AddThis
  • Email

More from SDReader


This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

Log in to comment

Skip Ad

Let’s Be Friends

Subscribe for local event alerts, concerts tickets, promotions and more from the San Diego Reader