La Concha, Santander: another surf in the wall | Photo: Urrun60

Surfing towards a rocky wall feels like having an adrenaline shot injection. The problem is when things go wrong. Surfers get injured and cliffs remain unharmed.


The world is full of reef breaks, precise jetty breaks and hollow slabs. These are surf peaks for the advanced and local surfers. It's important to take-off in the right spot and bottom turn really quickly, but it is perfectly doable.

Now, have you ever surfed against a rock, cliff or concrete wall? In many coastal villages and towns, these barriers are usually built to protect the urban areas from the power of the ocean.

Surfers know that and can't resist the adrenaline impulse. Where are the greatest sharp, tough and rocky surf-against-the-wall spots? Who takes risk seriously?

Spain offers the gnarliest examples of nose-to-rock surf. El Mongol, located in Gijon, is universally known in the world of winter stunt surfing, as the deadliest rocky point. Here, you'll also need to manage the backwash power in order to get out alive.

Another surf against the wall challenge might be experienced in Santander. At El Muro, you'll actually surf along the wall of rocks and can even touch it with your right hand as you drive a circular surf line and say goodbye to the spectator up above.

British surfers also get stoked in rocky and wedge surf. Newquay, the heart of surfing in the United Kingdom, offers two dangerous rock surf spots. At the local harbor and in the Towan Bay, surfers take-off and ride towards rocks. Hazards ahead.

In Byron Bay, Australia, something curious has been tried. Wave enthusiasts turn their back to the pile of rocks and ride the backwash, as it moves towards the ocean. The stunt is dangerous. Don't try it at your home break.

Finally, in the heart of American surfing, surfers in Santa Cruz get used to a wall of rocks and cliffs at their local point break. At Steamer Lane, risk is part of surfing. The problem is that, sometime, it doesn't go according to plans.