AUSTIN, Tex. — What if everybody had an ocean, across the U.S.A.?
A tentative answer to that question took shape on a recent morning in a giant artificial body of water within 160 acres of cactus-studded former ranch land here in Hill Country.
Every few minutes, about a half-dozen surfers paddled their boards into the shimmering celadon waves that approached. The surfers would then stand, turn and crouch to try riding the water as it crested over a reef and curled across the lagoon in head-high wedges before breaking, only to reform into mellow little rollers of the sort you might find in Waikiki.
It was another day of test runs at NLand Surf Park, a much-delayed attraction under development by Doug Coors, a scion of the beer-making family.
The idea of surfable, potentially profitable artificial waves is not new or unique. Kelly Slater, professional surfing’s most decorated champion, has grand plans for the big barrel -wave pool he has developed in California’s Central Valley — the first of what he hopes will become a global collection of elite training and competition centers built in partnership with the World Surf League, the leading professional tour. Read the full story here