September 02, 2018 2 min read

The WSL Surf Ranch Pro presented by Hurley is stop #8 on the World Surf League Championship Tour, and perhaps one of the most controversial.

The man-made wave, made it's 1st public contest appearance during the WSL Founders Cup in May 2018, to a sold-out crowd, and changed the face of surfing as we know it.

This September the surf contest tour takes a wide turn inland. The championship tour, which usually takes place at Trestles in San Clemente, was bumped from the roster, and moved to the artificial waves of Lemoore, California.

"A World Tour contest at the Ranch will be both tangible and symbolic: it would effectively put the artificial wave on par with legendary breaks and tour mainstays like North Shore Oahu’s Pipeline, South Africa’s Jeffrey’s Bay, and Australia’s Bells Beach." Aaron Colton

The future is now, as surfing transitions into a official spectator sport, unfolding one wave at at time. It's dubbed the world's longest open-barrel artificial wave, and offers a variety of wave shapes and sizes -- all of them picture perfect and identical. 

Some say the essence of "soul surfing" is gone, as technology mimics and mocks mother nature.  Others like Kelly Slater himself say  "That's where we've made all of our dreams and ideas, and our imaginations have grown from being in the ocean and learning from there. This will never replace that, this could just supplement it."

There's one thing for certain Lemoore, California, is not a beach town, and 70 ton Hydro-Foil wave making machinery is a far cry from the calming seashore.

Technology you’re pretty cool. Check out this drones eye view of #surfranch in Lemoore California. a A small agricultural town, 100 miles to the closest beach. . It was here last weekend the first EVER man-made wave surf contest #wslfounderscup went off. A place where perfect 40 second waves & 15 second barrels are the norm, and crowds of 5000+ spend💰to watch & froth. . Love it or Hate? this is the #newnormal Epic video by the talented @mattkurvin . #kellyslaterwavecompany #surfphotos #surfculture #weekendrewind

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Michelle Michalak
Michelle Michalak

Michelle's diploma reads BA Psychology with a minor in English, and her license plate reads #CaliforniaDreaming4Life. She begin her career in the NYC fashion industry working with fashion and internet pioneer, However, due the constant "nagging" of her entrepreneurial spirit, her crush on surfing, and hardcore love for the ocean, she chosen to call San Diego home for the past 10 years. On the west coast she 's chased waves & enlightenment working alongside "Gurus" in the online marketing & personal development industries. It in May 2012 she found her true Zen & Stoke, and joined the Slyde Handboards Team.