Most of us can’t jump over a four-metre high wall, much less do it on a kiteboard in churning water where a wrong split-second move could mean major injury.
Larry Dennis is not us. The obsessed kiteboarder has dreamed of surfing over Victoria’s breakwater for the last seven years. He even has a tattoo on his chest of a kiteboarder going through the seawall.
His obsession became a reality on Tuesday when wind, waves, skill and sheer guts combined to propel him over the Ogden Point breakwater. Check out his euphoria at 20 seconds into the video. (Dennis is so excited he does let an F-bomb slip later, but can ya blame him?)
Dennis, 48, tells The Huffington Post B.C. he was in the air for about seven seconds and ended up on the other side of the harbour.
The stone wall -- almost four metres high (12 feet) at high tide and six metres high (20 feet) at low tide – was built in the sea to protect the harbour from the force of the waves.
Kiteboarding, or kitesurfing, uses the wind power to propel a board combined with a large, controllable kite across the water. It will debut as an Olympic sport at Rio de Janeiro in 2016.
Three years ago, Dennis moved into the tallest building in James Bay overlooking the breakwater. He says that really amped up his obsession.
“Nobody’s done it. I don’t think anyone’s tried,” he said in an interview. “Guys have talked about it. It could be not so pretty if you didn’t make it.”
Dennis describes the conditions at Ogden Point “like a washing machine. There’s a lot of kelp and stuff. It’s the factor that if you don’t nail it, it could be ugly.” He points out that powerful waves will go through a pier but waves just bounce off a breakwater at you, making his feat that much more impressive.
Dennis, who is a dockyard rigger, recorded his feat with a camera strapped to his chest. There were a few people walking on the breakwater but he doesn’t think they snapped any photos from their vantage point.
He did however get a hearty hug and congratulations from a fellow kitesurfer once he reached the shore.