During the 80′s, as the booming surf industry made it’s move for cash registers around the planet, a solitary 70′s bred surfer turned and walked away from his top 16 pro tour position to devote his time to challenging his surfing abilities and self shaped boards in some of the worlds remotest and most challenging waves.
Surfer, shaper, explorer, Jim Banks is currently touring California shaping a limited number of custom boards and presenting an evening of live music, slideshow and story telling at the Boathouse Collective Costa Mesa : 8pm Thursday March 14th : $25 includes ticket to win a custom board from Jim.
As this was in the days before the companies backed such ventures, Jim funded his own exploration through shaping boards and writing the occasional travel piece for the magazines, and in doing so, he became an unwitting icon, flying the flag for surfers who felt that surfing was so much more than 20-minute heats in sub standard waves.
And so, while the banners waved, the horns blared, and the crowds cheered for the surfers in the coloured vests, Jim Banks quietly pulled into some of the worlds longest, deepest barrels while logging extended solo sessions at places like Grajagan, Desert Point, Cloudbreak and Gnaraloo.
These days Jim resides at Uluwatu in Bali where he spends his time building and developing his finely crafted boards, guitars and amps in between long sessions in the ocean and overseeing his Mex-inspired, Mango Tree Cafe.
Read more here: Surfer Mag