In the summer months, the western Pacific gives rise to some of the planet's biggest storms. When they turn and track north, these Category 5 super typhoons take the southern islands of Japan into their crosshairs. The long-period swells they generate transform the outer reefs into shallow, heaving and very serious slabs, as Kohl Christensen discovered on a storm chase with legendary photographer Kin Kimoto and a crew of Japan's fearless underground chargers. In the latest episode of the Deep Water series, Kohl gets a close-up look at the country's big-wave potential—and finds its samurai spirit and seafaring culture are still very much alive.
A feature story on this trip can be found in The Surfer's Journal, Vol.24, No.2