Even for boat captains like Mons, with more than a decade of experience navigating vessels around the globe, the ocean remains unpredictable. “On calm days it’s an exhilarating experience,” says Mons of the transfer he must do between pilot boat and the large ship he’ll eventually bring into port. “We meet ships coming from all over the world about five miles out to sea.
You grind for a few months, taking on charters or catching whatever fish is running, and then you have time off—time you’d likely want to spend surfing. “It can be a little torturous being on the water if the waves are firing,” says Mons, whose job requires him to work three weeks on and three weeks off. “You are heading out in the pilot boat launching over huge swells.
At this point in Mons’s career, one would be hard pressed to find a surfer who understands the ocean better. “In surf terms, pretend you are going to surf a critical wave and someone hands you a board that looks like a high performance shortboard,” Mons says of his daily duties. “You are in the lineup and commit to this wave coming your way, you take off, and, holy crap, it handles like a slug of a longboard!
Read more here: Surfer Mag