The thermal wind works up here even in spring when the lake is still frozen. So, it’s important that the landmasses are no longer covered by snow and can heat up. Punctually at 12 o’clock it was already time and the Maloja wind kicked in. In summer you can see the wind getting closer and closer in the form of a dark stripe on the water. Of course, if the lake is still frozen, this isn’t the case – the wind just kicks in all of a sudden. At first, Juliano was not really impressed by the idea of going ‘icesurfing’ up there. For him, as a windsurfer, the ice hole was just big enough to get planing before doing a trick. He wasn’t feeling it. But then, when the wind picked up and the shimmering mirror-flat water of the ice hole started to shudder, I could see his eyes start to sparkle.
No time to lose, it was out of the dry suits and into our wetsuits. I was wearing the new Mercury Tie Dye which looked awesome in that environment. It was one big party on the water – Juliano did some serious world-class windsurf freestyle, Sarah had fun on the wingfoil and couldn’t stop cruising through the shimmering blue, and in between was me on my twintip jumping from the water to the ice and back – basically, like cross country on a kite. These extreme temperatures pose a great challenge for body and material – it’s not about trying new tricks, but more about the experience and the joy of the extraordinary.
Overall we enjoyed a week full of peaceful SUP and foil mornings, crazy views, good company, and a lot of wind to shred the ice in the afternoons. I am already looking forward to next year when the ice starts to melt and the Maloja wind blows like a hairdryer… ■