Surfer Conor Maguire has claimed what may be Ireland’s largest ever swell it was almost on his doorstep at Mullaghmore in County Sligo.
The area, which generally produces waves of 6-9 metres (20-30ft) in height, was hit by a rare coincidence of conditions: the swell from Hurricane Epsilon on top of a mid-Atlantic depression which produced waves breaking almost a mile out and touching, perhaps, 18 metres in height.
After asking the permission of the local council due to Covid restrictions and in coordination with the RNLI, it was deemed appropriate for Maguire and his support team – including five jetskis for safety – to ride.
‘Originally when I saw the swell on the charts, I was like: ‘Oh fuck, of course it would happen during lockdown,’’ Maguire told the surfing website Magic Seaweed of his potentially record breaking wave, adding that ‘my main concern was not to offend anyone or put pressure on the hospital system’.
On the wave itself, the Maguire said, ‘it was smooth, man. I felt like butter or something … I just kind of stood there [laughs]. But it ended up catching up with me in the end’