Surfers Brave Winter Waves on Lake Michigan

Friday, Dec 13, 2013  |  Updated 3:17 PM PDT
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For surfers looking to catch a wave, Lake Michigan isn't the most likely destination this time of year, but that hasn't stopped a few brave friends.

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For surfers looking to catch a wave, Lake Michigan isn't the most likely destination this time of year, but that hasn't stopped a few brave friends.

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Three Michigan surfers turned heads Thursday after they decided to brave Lake Michigan’s winter waves.

Zach Dorvinen, John McNeil, and Nick Brown say Lake Michigan’s waves are ideal for surfing in the wintery weather and paddled out into the frigid waters Thursday to test them out, the trio told NBC affiliate Up North Live.

Water temperatures Thursday were a reported 45 degrees further out in the lake and 18 degrees on the shore in Charlevoix County. But Brown said the frigid season is "actually the best time of year to surf."

"It's  when the waves get really good, so you've got to come out in the winter if you want good waves, he said in an interview with Up North Live. "I mean, we get like one good day during the summer, but it's like almost every day in the winter."

The surfers were seen wearing wetsuit gear and were covered in ice chunks following their icy endeavor. But despite frozen eyelashes and feet, they said they don't feel any colder than your average person bundled up to brave the elements.  

And while winter temps are enough to steer people into hibernation, the surfers said the activity helps them survive the winter, at least until the water freezes.

"You know what you live in northern Michigan. You sit at home when there's snow out, you might as well move somewhere else." Dorvinen told the station. "You've got to have a hobby in the winter."
 

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