Danny Way: Over the wall

The famed skateboarder is the subject of a new documentary

Dragonflies were swarming. They'd pelt his face as he sailed down through the air. They could get into an eye.

Action-sports films such as Waiting for Lightning often jack up their subjects' failure and success—sometimes for valid reasons, sometimes not.

But Way's experience shows why grounding the accomplishments of great skaters or surfers in the reality the rest of us inhabit makes them bigger, not smaller.

"I have an issue with heights," he says.

Ten flights above the Great Wall of China, the scaffolding next to the ramp swayed. "I cannot wait to get this over," Way thought to himself.

And then he rolled into the jump.

This article did not appear in print.

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