Born in the early 1940s, George Greenough is a surfing legend, acknowledged the world over as the man who changed the way we ride surfboards, with his very own designs. Designs that were not a rip off of someone else’s ideas, but moreso, just a practical reality that turned into a revelation at the time when people were riding heavy DFin longboards built for nose riding.
George Greenough was riding in the tube, with a camera on his back in 1969 and filming it, in the dark. People didn’t really start riding in the tube until years later, let alone film their tube rides!
above: George Greenough on set for Big Wednesday, photo by Dick Hoole.
Greenough was riding lightweight boards (spoons) under 5 foot long, weighing less than a modern shortboard, when the most high performance surfers were riding boards that weighed 30 pounds and were over 9 feet long. It doesn’t stop. Greenough doesn’t stop. He is still making waves and adding more interesting ideas to surfing, photography, boat designs and anything else that he is interested in.
If we talk the history of surfing, I think most people would have Greenough in their top 5 contributors and possibly the most influential surfer alive today (2020).