“As soon as I saw him going for that wave all I could think was, Oh, s***!” says photographer Stuart Gibson of this photo showing Mick Hoult surfing a wave off the east coast of Tasmania, Australia. “I was thinking, He can’t be going for that wave,” Gibson recalls. “Mick was so deep that he almost fell right onto the rocky slab below, but he recovered at just the last second—just in time to pose for the shot.
“This particular spot only fires up about once a year,” notes Gibson. “I wanted to be really close to the action, but so much water is moving around, and it tries to suck you around the back of the rock. It’s a really dangerous wave—another friend of mine broke two vertebrae on that rock, and Mick tore the ligaments in his ankle on this same session.”
Despite all of this, Gibson says that the image was worth the trouble. “It’s one of my favorite images to date. I had all my camera settings locked and ready to go, so all I had to do was get myself in the right position on the wave and blast away.”
Reblogged from National Geographic