Using a Drone to Surf? 'Dronesurfing' Is Actually a Thing, and It Looks Awesome

The more accessible, powerful, and lightweight drones become, the more we are going to see crafty individuals multipurpose them for their own whims. We've seen drones used to cut down trees, deliver products, and now here we have one pulling a surfer along a coast.

The Freefly Alta 8, hardly a hobbyist-grade drone when listed at $17,500, apparently has enough pull force to take the surfer in the video for a fun ride along the coast while he does some tricks on a small board. Of course it's out of the question to spend that kind of money for some fun surfing, but I can only imagine that an affordable version is not far off with as quickly as we've seen the market for drones bubble in the last few years.

It's important to note that this wasn't done by some crafty DIY-er with a spare drone and some free time, this was actually done by Freefly, makers of the Alta 8 (among other cool products). Freefly posted this video to their social media accounts, and Facebook in particular has been buzzing with comments about how there's no way this could be real. I couldn't find any comment from Freefly to confirm nor deny it, as they simply say in their posts:

The team at Freefly closed out the summer with the introduction of a brand new sport: DroneSurfing

So what do you think? Are they pulling a fast one? It looks pretty legitimate to me, but I've not used the Alta 8 so I cannot speak to how much power it does or does not have.

Mike Wilkinson's picture

Mike Wilkinson is an award-winning video director with his company Wilkinson Visual, currently based out of Lexington, Kentucky. Mike has been working in production for over 10 years as a shooter, editor, and producer. His passion lies in outdoor adventures, documentary filmmaking, photography, and locally-sourced food and beer.

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An RC boat would be cheaper

A boat would be cheaper

I enjoy water skiing, but if the drone costs $20,000, I may as well spend more for a boat.

Man i really wanna try that

Yes it just looks perfect ... i love it

Looks fun, but is this for the surfer who has no friends, nor a break? In flat waters a simple boat will do and at that price you can get two easily. and on a coast I'm sure you can find a break to surf. With friends. And I must say the coolest portions of this video when not shot from the drone... But then again, kite boarding got started by one dude doing it. So, 20 years from now every body of water might have a slight buzzing about...

Massive applications for Big Wave surfing where the guys currently use a Jetski to be towed in. The drone could tow you in & then hover directly above you. There are safety applications as well. This is awesome !

Essentially kite-surfing, but without being reliant on wind strength and direction! To those saying to use a boat, sure, but this lets one ride in vary shallow waters and glassy smooth because there's no boat wake.

Though it is a bit difficult to believe that size drone has enough power. Even if it does, I imagine it must burn through a battery in just a couple minutes.

Looks fun and that is one powerful multirotor