Without question, Shaun White is the greatest competitive snowboarder ever. Back-to-back Olympic Gold Medals. An astounding 11 X Winter Games Gold Medals. Six US Open Titles. Snowboarding Grand Prix Gold Medalist. The list goes on and on. And at the young age of 24, who knows what snowboarding accomplishments White will add to his resume.
The snowboard isn't the only shred stick that White dominates on. When White's career was just beginning, White was known as much for his skateboarding skills as his mastery of the snowboarding craft. As a vert skateboarder, White has two Summer X Games Gold Medals, including his recent dramatic victory at the 2011 Summer X Games.
Despite his dominance on both a snowboard and skateboard, White has been relatively quiet when it comes to the founding father of board sports, surfing. In the new surf book Dogwild & Board, White talked about surfing as a young kid, and why he stayed away from the water for many years. "My dad wanted me to be a surfer in the beginning. He took me out when I was nine. It's pretty scary when you're small, because the waves look huge," said White. "My dad sends me down this wave. I get swirled around, and it's my first time on a hard board. I come out of the water, and the board hits me in the face! I start bleeding everywhere, and decided I'm never doing this again. So I shied away from surfing and went to the skatepark."
"I still love surfing," said White. "I go out all the time. I think it's one of those things where I could never compete in it because it's just so much fun to do on the side."
While White admits to being passionate about surfing, there has been very little, if any, documentation of the snowboard and skateboard master riding waves. Until now.
Over a three month span, White went to both Hawaii and Mexico to ditch the snow and concrete for some salt water bliss. White first went to Hawaii, where he stayed at his sponsor Target's private house on the North Shore of Oahu. It was here that White was photographed catching some beautiful right-handers.
A few months later, White headed south of the border to Mexico. Looks like White can surf his backside as good as the front.
White looks like a natural catching and riding waves. Who knows, maybe someday White will get tired of falling on hard snow and concrete, and take his competitive nature to the ASP World Tour. Or maybe Shaun White will leave the rigors of his snowboarding and skateboarding work behind, and just focus on having fun when he's out surfing.