Jeff Rowley: he does not follow the sheep

Jeff Rowley has paddled into the Mavericks left-hander to become the first Australian to claim the challenge. California's premier big wave surf spot is traditionally known for its crazy right-hander, but Rowley decided to drive the other way.

Rowley has decided to move to the USA during the North Pacific winter surf season and recently relocated from Hawaii to Northern California with bigger swells in sight.

The Australian record breaker enjoyed a morning of light winds and uncrowded waves before the onshore wind came up in very cold weather conditions.

Rowley was pushing the boundaries of what was possible at the Mavericks left-hander, a task that wasn't without its challenges.

"The left-hander at Mavericks is really heavy - the take-off is a vertical free fall into a nasty slab barrel," Rowley explains.

"I wiped out on a monster wave and tumbled down; it drained all of my energy, and I didn't know which way was up," Rowley stated.

"The water is so cold, and the waves are so powerful. One mistake and the wave eats you for breakfast, and next thing you know, you're washing in towards the rocks."

Jeff Rowley rode his 10'2" (3m) Al Merrick quad fin surfboard dubbed the "Magic Carpet."

He is a regular stance surfer, so he had to ride Mavericks with his back towards the wave.

"The wave is crazy. I've never had my 10'2" surfboard free-falling on the take-off on my backhand like I did today. It was just me, a handful of great local surfers, and a couple of seals, classic day", Rowley stated.

Watch him take the alternative way.

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