Kepa Acero, man, myth, legend, just finished a solo tour through Angola, in southern Africa. What drives these adventures? What convinces Acero it’s worth it to live in a tent for months at a time in harsh, foreign lands? 200-yard pointbreaks with no one else out. And what does Acero do when he finds a 200-yard pointbreak with no one else out? He takes his clothes off and surfs it nude. Allow him to explain:
How sick is that left?
Yeah! It’s an amazing, long lefthander. I was so stoked when I woke up and saw that lineup. I was screaming the whole time, that wave was a fascinating experience, and so was the human experience to get there.
What’s the inspiration for going nude? Any wax issues?
[Laughing] Well…after surfing, I have to admit that I had to use scissors…there was no other way. The idea of surfing nude, it just came naturally. You are in the desert, all alone. I just thought my boardshorts weren't making any sense in that natural atmosphere.
How’d that SOLOSHOT cam work?
It’s so easy to use. You wear a sensor on your arm, and the tripod follows the sensor. It films the whole session, and then you only have to cut and edit the video. It’s a great idea.
How’d you get your truck stuck? And unstuck?
Well, I was trying to make a shortcut through the dunes, trying to get to a view of the spot. I hit a couple of strong bumps, I had to press the brake, and that's the biggest mistake you can do in the desert. As soon as I hit the accelerator, I was done. Luckily, I was only about 10 km from the closest people, so I figured someone would pass through sooner or later, and if not I could've just walked.
Where are the last three places you’ve been? Where are the next three you’ll go?
I went deep into Indonesia with my friend Aritz Aranburu, then I explored the west coast of India, and now I'm about to spend a month in Angola. Next, I want to go to some coastline on the Mediterranean Sea. And then I am going on a sailboat in December, the Pakea Bizkaia, with my friend and the captain, Unai Basurko, to explore Antartica. It will be the most exciting experience I've ever challenged myself with.
What was special about Angola?
Angola is a very tough country. It’s been in war for 40 years, and things there are not easy. What for us would be simple to get, like electricity or water, is a mission to get there. Lots of poverty too.
What's it like touring through a country like that?
I haven’t seen any others travelers around, things are hard in this place. But at the same time, it has that untouched beauty, the people are great, and there are no other tourists. It’s an amazing challenge to travel through places like this one. I have a love/hate relationship with many of the countries I've been to in Africa. But even with the hard parts, you always come back.