Kalle Carranza at Puerto Escondido, Mexico
Photo by Scott Aichner
Mexico has had its fair share of professional level surfers over the years, but not until 2002 did a Mexican surfer land on the cover of Surfer magazine. That all changed one morning in June at Playa Zicatela, Puerto Escondido. Dubbed the “Mexican Pipeline,” Puerto is home to some truly grande barrels—waves that photographer Scott Aichner loves to document.
“This was the first Mexican on the cover of Surfer magazine—the May 2003 issue. With being ‘the first’ in anything, there’s always a bit of controversy. It all started in June ’02, one year before the cover came out. Puerto Escondido local and excellent surfer Oscar Moncada and I were out early waiting for a bomb on the main peak,” says Aichner. “Kalle was a bit late to the party and paddled out way up the beach and started to make his way toward Oscar and me. You know what happens next … That bomb we’d been waiting for came in too deep for Oscar, but Kalle takes off, backdoors a heavy section, and scores (Gooooaaaaal!). He landed on the cover of Surfer one year later. The thing is, Kalle isn’t from Puerto Escondido; he’s Puerto Vallarta way up north. It’s like saying Santa Cruz’s Ken “Skindog” Collins is a local at the Huntington Beach Pier,” explains Aichner.
“Oscar and Kalle are good friends but—you know that had to sting. Kalle also landed on The Surfer’s Journal cover that same month in 2003 … when it rains it pours I guess,” he adds. “Either way, wherever I traveled, I always included the locals in the shoots.”
For more of Scott Aichner’s work, go to etsy.com/bestsurfstockphotos
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