Although Pat Curren prefers to live his life well off
the beaten path, existing in a virtual self-imposed
exile, his impact on the sport still resonates today.
He began surfing at 18 after moving to La Jolla, and
quickly climbed the local hierarchy to become a founding
member of the notorious Wind and Sea Surf Club.
took his first trip to Hawaii in 1955, then returned
two years later as an integral part of the original
wave of California surfers to tackle the verboten surf
at Waimea Bay.
nascent shaper with a mere two years experience crafting
boards, Curren, upon his return to California, rededicated
himself to configuring an effective Waimea gun. By 1960,
Curren's big wave boards were considered the performance
standard, his sleek spears of foam and resin manifestation
of the shaper himself, narrow, functional sleds intended
to take its rider from peak to shoulder in the most
efficient manner possible.
the next decade he worked as both a surfboard shaper
and professional diver, before he finally packed up
his tools, and moved to San Jose del Cabo's rugged East
and Tom Curren, circa mid '60s.