On Monday, McNamara may have broken his own record for the largest wave ever surfed. McNamara returned to Nazaré, Portugal, where he set a record a little more than a year ago.
As The Christian Science Monitor reported last May: The Guinness World Records recognized a 44-year-old Hawaii pro surfer for catching a 78-foot wave off the coast of Portugal, saying the November  feat beats a 2008 record for the biggest ridden by more than 1 foot.
Nazare is known as a prime spot for big rides. The waves roll in off the Atlantic Ocean and travel along an undersea canyon that generate some of the biggest waves on the planet. The Nazare canyon is about 16,000 feet deep in places, and about 140 miles long.
On Monday, :"The conditions in Nazaré were heavenly perfect. Light southern winds and strong swell coming from northwest and hitting the local canyon as it should," according to SurferToday.com.
McNamara is waiting confirmation of the size of the latest wave and whether a new record was set.
McNamara, who began surfing at age 11 and went pro at 17, said the achievement became more important to him when he realized it could help him urge more people to follow their passions.
"The world would be a much better place if everyone was doing what they wanted to do," he told the Associated Press last year after he set the record.