Take Me Down to the Hospital – Garrett McNamara Cuts Deep

As far as getting slammed around by huge, rough-and-tumble waves and messing with sharks goes, it's been a tough few weeks for our buddy Garrett "I Epitomize No Fear" McNamara. After a highly successful, yet painful outing at Shark Park (WAY off the coast of Santa Barbara) a few weeks back, McNamara decided to get in his car and drive north up the 101 to check out Maverick's. We'll let the pride and joy of Waimea Bay pick up the story from there:

"We went up to Maverick's to get some big waves," begins McNamara. "When we got there, the waves were a solid 20 feet, but it was windy and ugly out."

That didn't stop McNamara, though.

"I went for one of the bigger waves," he explains. "I caught it and went to do a snap under the lip, but the lip crumbled and off I went. The board hit me hard and one of the fins sliced my lip and then my forearm. I knew I was cut up pretty good."

McNamara paddled back to shore to do damage assessment and take inventory.

"My arm was cut so deep you could see the muscle moving beneath the fat. The muscle movement was kind of making the fat go up and down. But God loves me and the cut did not go down to the muscle. If the cut was any deeper, it would have cut the muscle and done nerve damage. That would have caused some problems."

Realizing a visit to the emergency ward might be in order, McNamara had a buddy take him over to the nearest hospital. "You ever get a shot in the lip?" Garrett asks this writer.


"It hurt so bad that I just went to sleep. That was it. The were sewing my lip up and I was laying their asleep and snoring." [Laughter]

Busted lip and 60 stitches later, Garrett took the night off, woke up the next morning and decided to drive back over to Maverick's. You can't keep a good man down.

"So what did I do the next day? I went back out in the water. I was towing in some of my buddies. The waves were good and there were a few times that I wanted to get out there in the water, but then my lip started dripping blood. You don't want to be doing that at Maverick's."

Really? How come?

"You'll attract every shark around! That's not cool for the other surfers."

Good call.