Cool surfing

Surfing Under the Northern Lights

Advances in the design of wet suits, which are made from neoprene, a synthetic rubber, have pushed surfing far beyond the summery, “Gidget,” “Surf City” culture of midcentury Hollywood and pop music.

Since the 1990s, and especially in the last decade, enhanced insulation in the suits has opened some of the most frigid reaches of the world — Alaska, Antarctica, Canada, Greenland, Iceland, Norway, Russia, Sweden — to surfers seeking isolated adventures, craggy nature and uncrowded and unexplored waves.

“Everyone has done the tropics,” Timothy Latte, 25, a Swede who won the 2015 Lofoten Masters, said. “Cold water surfing is the new black.”

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