Cliffs of hope

In a new series called “Cliffs of hope“, former Irish Surf Champion John McCarthy explores his greatest passions and challenges his deepest fears. He invites us all to journey with him to discover that there is a lot to life than meets the eye.

Affectionately known as ‘Mac’ to many, John is an Irish surfing pioneer. In 2005, he became the first surfer to ride “Ailleens“, a serious big wave that breaks at the foot of the cliffs of Moher in County Clare. He aptly named it after the nearby headland Aill na Searrach (the cliff of foals).

John has a surf school in Lahinch, and they were a key part of the first ever Cross Culture Surf exchange team, providing surf lessons, encouragement and motivational talks to Basque and Irish students.

His infectious smile and energy are a breath of fresh air in a sport that by its nature, is very selfish, and sadly, at times quite ugly. But as he would be the first to admit, he’s not always been this way. So what inspired the change?

Find out at !

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