Watch: If Indiana Jones Were A Surf Photographer With A Kink For Remote Africa
One of Stab's most beloved lensman, Alan Van Gysen stars in "An African Surfing Life"
If you operate in the close-knit and ever slowly closing niche of surf media, there are characters that come up in conversation that will immediately illicit wild tales from nearly anyone assembled, and Alan Van Gysen is most certainly one.
The mythology around South African known most commonly as AVG borders on '80s Harrison Ford cinematics. Our very own Sam McIntosh, who is no easy Queen to impress, becomes nearly emotional retelling a story from Stab's trip to the Ments with Jordy for Stab In The Dark, wherein a thick anchor line was tangled in the boat's propeller, some ten feet below the water, and up a very narrow tube. With the boat drifting towards a nearby reef in building surf and wielding a pretty big knife, AVG proceeded to spend minutes at time under water, in the dark, wedged between propeller and barnacle-covered hull, hacking the rope loose, and ultimately saving not only the boat but the film project entirely.
On surf trips, he is legitimately the most competent and prepared individual you could ever encounter; on forecasting swells and conditions, even in the most remote corners of Africa, he has a near mystical nack. He is certainly one of the Most Interesting Men In The (Surf) World.
In the film above, our friends at the radically chic African brand, Mami Wata, take a look at AVG's whole trip, profiling the blue-eyed handsome devil on another deep dive into his beloved Africa.