North Narrabeen, Australia
Born to a blue-collar family, Ben Wilkinson was raised in a caravan at North Narrabeen. At 16, after outgrowing both the caravan and the Sydney beachbreaks, his quest for more challenging surf began. These days, settled on the North Shore of Oahu, he dedicates his life to charging the biggest surf possible. "I'm interested in pushing the performance aspect of paddle-in surfing," he says, "coming hard off the bottom and drawing critical lines on XXL waves." Out of the water Big Ben combines carpentry and art, working with salvaged wood to create custom furniture for clients in Hawai'i and around the world.