As reported on www.tahoedailytribune.com
Last Tuesday’s gale-force winds probably caused lots of cursing — especially among firefighters battling a wildfire near Reno — but one intrepid North Shore man seized the gusts for all they were worth.
Photographer and fine-art framer Jimmy Callian, 36, knew this was his chance to ride Lake Tahoe’s wild surf.
That’s right. Callian, a longtime surfer who moved to Tahoe in 1999, saw the wind whipping up whitecaps on the lake and figured there “were waves somewhere on the lake.” After driving around to check out beaches, he found a spot “that looked fun.”
By “fun,” he meant 3- to 5-foot waves eerily resembling typical ocean swells. A gale-force wind and bone-chilling lake water only added to the challenge.
After his friend Meg Pugh arrived to take pictures, Callian grabbed his 5-foot, 10-inch Quad surfboard, donned his 5mm titanium-lined wetsuit, booties, gloves and hood, and slid from a rock into the frigid washing machine that the lake had become.
“I had to keep telling myself it was the lake,” Callian wrote in an e-mail last week. “I couldn’t believe it.”