words: Txominillo Higginbotham
Homebreak: Zarautz, Basque Country.
Sponsors: O’Neill, Globe, Arnette, Moor Surfboards
Hobbies: Films, skateboarding, sightseeing
21-year-old Zarautz goofyfoot Indar Unanue popped up on our radar last winter when he was sighted charging Waimea Bay, taking off deep, eating shit and copping the beast on the head.
The wave and the pics were impressive enough, but then when we asked Aritz about the guy he told us that Indar was only paddling a 7-foot board that day. The guy is definitely not afraid to go.
Born in San Sebastian, Spain and of Basque descent, Indar now lives in the small village of Itziar, overlooking one of the wildest stretches of the Gipuzkoa coast and a 15-minute car ride from Zarautz. At 12 years old this is where he started out, becoming a member of the local surf club where he got to meet like-minded wave riders he still rips with today (Igor Muniain, Mario Azurza, Marcos Sansegundo, Mikel Urigoitia).
While he competed a fair bit as a junior (under-18 and under-16 Euskadi and Gipuzcoa Champion), today Indar’s sponsors are happy for him to just focus on gaining photo coverage in mags and clocking as much water time as possible. With the local big wave spots of Roca Puta and Playa Gris just around the corner from where he lives, there’s plenty for him to be getting on with. In fact, more recently, the Basque charger caught the local media’s attention with an impressive win at Punta Galea BBK Challenge last December, which went down in big 3 to 4 metre conditions. “I felt pretty comfortable in the water…I was just trying to enjoy myself and learn from the experience. My good mate Adur Letamendia was with me, he’s been a real inspiration.”
While big uns are something Indar relishes, he loves to rip small waves too, not keen on the idea of being pigeon-holed. Recent surf trips have included Iceland, Norway, Indo and Hawaii again this winter. Back from his second visit where he stayed a month and half this time, he says there’s no doubt Hawaii has made the biggest impression on his surfing so far. “I had to wait over an hour to catch this wave at Pipe, but the wait finally paid off.”