Surfing Alaska's Bore Tide

Many years ago, I worked as a tour guide in Alaska, falling deeply in love with the state. One of my favorite drives was along Turnagain Arm, a long and shallow branch of Cook Inlet, a beautiful landscape that is home to a fascinating natural phenomenon. Bore tides occur when an incoming high tide collides with the outgoing tide in a narrow channel, generating a turbulent wave front. Getty Images photographer Streeter Lecka was recently lucky enough to spend six days on Turnagain Arm, photographing the brave souls who venture out onto the mudflats to ride these waves. Waves can reach as high as 10 feet tall, crashing over calmer waters, moving upstream at 10-15 mph. Gathered here are some of Lecka's images of the surfers riding the bore tides of Turnagain Arm.

Read more
Hints: View this page full screen. Skip to the next and previous photo by typing j/k or ←/→.

Most Recent

  • Siese Veenstra / AFP / Getty

    Hopeful Images From 2018

    I’ve made it a tradition to compose an essay of uplifting images from the past year—an effort to seek out and recognize some of the abundant joy and kindness present in the world around us.

  • Mandel Ngan / AFP / Getty

    2018 in Photos: Wrapping Up the Year

    Time to take a look back at some of the most memorable events and images of 2018. Among the events covered in this essay, part 3 of 3: midterm congressional elections in the United States, hurricanes and typhoons in Asia and North America, Brazil’s election of the far-right Jair Bolsonaro as its new president, and much more.

  • Anton Vaganov / Reuters

    2018 in Photos: A Look at the Middle Months

    Time to take a look back at some of the most memorable events and images of 2018. Among the events covered in this essay, part 2 of 3: Mexico elected a new president, World Cup fans cheered and cried, lava destroyed neighborhoods in Hawaii, and much more.

  • Larry Busacca / Getty for Coachella

    2018 in Photos: How the First Months Unfolded

    Time to take a look at some of the most memorable events and images of 2018. Events covered in this essay include the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, the March for Our Lives gun control rally, Mark Zuckerberg facing Congress, and much more.