In order to shoot big-wave surfing, one must have patience, solid forecasts, flexibility and cash on hand to travel on short notice to chase the world's largest waves.
From Maui to Nazare, Half Moon Bay to Teahupoo, 2014 was a good year for big-wave surfing. Look no further than the winning waves for proof.
It was yet another epic year of surf celebrated at the annual XXL Global Big Wave Awards, and stealing the show was none other than Greg Long and Grant Baker.
Over the last few weeks, every big-wave spot from Hawaii to California saw some of the best swells in recent memory, and some lucky surfers found the right spots.
After nearly drowning at Cortes Bank, an infamous big-wave break 100 miles off the California coast, Greg Long returned a year later to ride flawless 20-foot waves.
After starting the week surfing Jaws on Maui, then rushing Maverick's on the West Coast, Greg Long capped a 96-hour big-wave adventure with a purposeful session at Cortes Bank.
Putting in a dominant performance at the Northern California big-wave spot, Grant "Twiggy" Baker claims his second Maverick's Invitational title.
With 40-foot surf in the forecast for Jan. 24, the Maverick's Invitational will be off the charts, and the warm up sessions aren't too bad either.
It's game on in Northern California as Torrey Meister wins a unique rendition of the O'Neill Cold Water Classic and the Maverick's Invitational opens its waiting period.
On Dec. 21, 2012 Santa Cruz's Shawn Dollar rode what's been measured in at 61 feet -- enough for a new world record and the XXL Awards' "Biggest Wave" title.
From underground Maverick's charger to bonafide big-wave surf star, for Shawn Dollar success has come on his terms.
Shawn Dollar rides a world record 61-foot wave, Shane Dorian takes "Ride of the Year" honors at the 2013 Billabong XXL Big Wave Awards.
Last winter Northern California big-wave icon Peter Mel played a role in the production of "Chasing Mavericks." This is what he had to say about it all.
Nobody's ever dominated paddling quite like Jamie Mitchell, and with his sights set on the big-wave horizon, it appears there's nothing he can't do in the water.