Mike Stewart: the Hawaiian bodyboarder taking on Praia do Norte at the age of 55 | Photo: Praia do Norte

Mike Stewart returned to the world's most famous underwater canyon, two years after riding a few giants alongside Dudu Pedra.

Despite the challenging ocean conditions, the Hawaiian bodyboarder, 55, paddled out on his own at Praia do Norte, in Nazaré, and attacked the mighty waves without jet ski support.

The swell, influenced by tropical storm Leslie, was sending waves in the 20-to-40-foot range. Stewart paddled into his mountains of choice and then got back to the lineup using arm power only.

"The way I figured things was that if I couldn’t make the paddle out, then I probably shouldn’t try to handle the conditions," explained Stewart.

"This session took me two, or three times longer to paddle out than the previous Nazaré session I had there. It was also discouraging to get pushed back after making progress, and so I almost gave up a couple of times to try from further north up the beach."

"Important life lesson: Surges of intensity are usually followed by episodes of relief. If you can just persevere, you will take advantage of any progress you make and will more likely arrive at your destination," concluded the waterman from Oahu.

Mike Stewart: he didn't want jet ski support at Praia do Norte | Photo: Praia do Norte

Mike Stewart: he has been riding Nazaré for more than a decade | Photo: Praia do Norte

The nine-time world bodyboarding champion is a familiar face in Nazaré for a long time.

More than a decade ago, and years before the Guinness World Records, Mike Stewart was already competing in the Nazaré Special Edition, a big wave bodyboarding contest that was first held in 2003.

This time, and according to the local reports, the man who embraced healthy organic eating spent 40 minutes in the water, battling the beasts that made the Portuguese shore break famous across the world.

Impressive, to say the least. But let's not forget that Mike Stewart was the first bodyboarder to be featured in Nazaré's Surfer Wall.

Take a look at a few interesting facts about Mike Stewart.

Portugal is known worldwide for its beautiful beaches, food, historical monuments, nice weather, and friendly people. But the westernmost European country is also a popular wave riding destination.

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