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Surfing in a land-locked city

The mercury climbed to the upper 90s last week in Munich. So naturally the banks of the Eisbach, an artificial tributary of the River Isar that flows into the Englischer Garten, were packed — with surfers.

They waited patiently to take a turn, one surfer at a time. Some managed to stay upright as long as a minute or two. Others almost immediately fell into the waves and ended up half a football field down the river. But they seemed to enjoy being carried along in the cool, green water.

Surfing Eisbach Munich

Englischer Garden Munich

From the bridge above the surf looked violent and locals mentioned that authorities hope to eliminate the waves to make surfing impossible. Further down the river, the banks were crowded with swimmers. "Swimming is prohibited, but the swimmers say surfing is too — and there are still surfers," said one of the many onlookers.

Munich Swimming Verboten

Maybe this guy was smart to wear headgear:

Surfing Germany

This site mentions the conflict and the history of the spot. Even Jack Johnson once took a spin in the Eisbach.

And who could resist the pull of the river? Cold, wet air rose up from its turbulence, breaking the heat. If only we'd had suits. Luckily, a nearby beer garden, with shade and a different sort of froth, beckoned.

River Eisbach Surfing

Banks of River Eisbach