The excitement around here is a hurricane named Felicia. She's sitting out in the middle of the Pacific and has waves directed straight at the Hawaiian Islands.Pat Caldwell of the National Weather Service and our wave forecast guru is calling for a watch on Sunday and a warning on Monday for our east shores. We should (hopefully?) get some wrapping here on the north shore. If our trade winds hold as they are now we are in for some great summer wave sailing. Most of our (K.Y.C.) gang are back on Island after their summer safari's and are ready to explode.
Now,these are extreme athletes in a very extreme place!
Olaf, Good to hear that your Aggro Tank can be repaired. I see that Felicia has been downgraded to Cat 1 but looks like it will track right over the islands. Appears you'll have plentiful waves and wind, enjoy! No development here on the right coast but we are moving into prime cane season. We have had a very unusual weather pattern this summer, so its hard to say what will happen. Off to OBX in 2 weeks. Hopefully, there will be a wave down in NC. By the way, my 8.0'is a fire flex squash tail.
Fat Paul, Felicia may surprise us but as of now she's only giving us some much needed rain and she seems to have stalled our trade winds so WTF ?
I'll bet you've visited Hatteras many times. I have only been there once about 30 years ago. I'm sure that it's changed alot. It was September through October and the island was pretty much deserted (after the national amateur surfing championship event)that is except for a bunch of surfers and fishermen. I remember it to be one of the coolest places that I have ever been to. I surfed various spots like The Light House,Avon Pier,Old Road, Frisco and some others that I can't remember the names of. I lived in my van at Frisco Woods Camp Ground with all the other Nomadic east coast surfers. That, was as cool to me as a young surfer dude as living Camp 4 in Yosemite was when I was a young climber dude! My experience on Cape Hatteras that season solidified the notion that I wanted to be a surfer and live in a place that I can surf every day that there are waves, when I grew up. We would surf when there were waves and clean fish at the docks when there weren't. We would get a little cash and some fresh fish. We REALLY ate well in camp every night was a feast Everyone there was so cool.
I remember surfing at Old Road one really big day. It was closing out so, really, all we were doing is dropping in and kicking out after one turn. On one wave I was late and got sucked over the falls and I got worked real bad. My leash got wrapped around a log or some sort of post that was buried in the sandbar below the surface. Also some how the strap connecting the leash to my leg was tangled at the same time. I was literally tethered to the bottom in pounding waves. I couldn't get a breath between the waves. I almost drowned! Somehow, I broke the leash! If it had been a modern one like I use now I couldn't have broken it. I remember swimming in and sitting on the beach with my face in my hands feeling soo numb. When my buddies came in one of them said to me, "I saw you flailing in the impact zone and heard you screaming! I thought that shark had got you so I didn't want to get close. Then I saw you on the beach and I figured you were OK"
If your in the neighborhood and are just cruising go by and say hay to my friend Andy McKinney. He owns "Sail World Cape Hatteras" and is a very cool guy. He and I shared some great waves at Kuau last winter when he was here on Maui.
Have a great trip Fat Paul! I look forward to your report.
Many trips to the Cape and some unforgettable nights at Frisco Woods campground. Flat spells are particularly hard, especially if the fish aren't biting and usually leads to much beer consumption. We wore out our welcome at the campgrounds on several occasions. It seems that everyone who has been there has some memorable story about their visit. During my last trip, I was bombarded with lead fishing weights by these Amish women fishing off Rodanthe pier while surfing the north side. Those holy women could cast pretty good and nearly clipped me twice. I kept asking them where the love was and they just shook their fist at us. Mr. grey suit also came calling and restored order by clearing the water. Olaf, I'll look up your friend Andy when Im there.
We just went through our first Big NW swell event here on the north shore of Maui. It was all that we could hope for! Five days of waves and strong consistent wind made for some great wave sailing! As Summer Nemora the owner of the Kuau Mart(the little local store that every surfer,wave sailor,and kite surfer drops by for beer and munchies)said to me yesterday,"Every surfer on the north shore looks like they've had the shit kicked out of them!" I personally took two trips through the rocks on my back in the strong currents on Saturday! I also rode some awesome waves! Several of them with better than 15' faces. So I guess it's "Game ON" again over here on da Rock. Glenn James said that we have one more day of waves and there isn't much in the way of work so what a mutha to do?
We just finished up another 4 day north shore big wave event and it was soo good! The swells have been back to back all this late summer /early fall! Every day of this last swell was unique unto it’s self and had its own personality due to slight directional and weather changes.
Day one was difficult in that the wind was very gusty and I rigged for the lulls so I really got spanked in the gusts. It was hard to turn on the wave face. I was upset with myself for breaking a rule that I have about trying to tweak my sail to do something that is beyond it designed purpose. As it turned out there really wasn’t any perfect scenario but I should have rigged the sail the way it was designed or rigged another size. I still got some great waves in spite of the gnarly wind conditions.
Day two was one of the best (big wave) wave sailing days that I can remember EVER! 20’+ faces with steady 4.4m wind and the channels were open. I dropped in and road so many perfect waves I have no Idea how many. I started getting tired at one point and almost went in when a beautiful massive wave presented its self and I just had to take it after that I decided that if I go in before dark with conditions as good as they were I would probably regret it. When I did go in I was too exhausted to fight the current in the Kuau channel and I was nearly washed back out to sea via the rock garden. My Kiwi buddy Tracy saw what was happening and swam out and helped me punch my sail board gear through the ripping current. I had done the same for her a couple of weeks back when she broke her mast. She was just paying back the favor.
Day three the waves were still giant and somewhat larger than day two. The wind was sketchy due to the passing rain squalls. In fact the wind completely shut down for a while leaving a number of pro sailors swimming with their rigs in giant wave and strong current. The wind came back so I rigged and sailed a shorter session than the previous day. I got some more phenomenal mackers and made it back to the launch without much trouble.
Day four was forecasted to have much lighter wind so I opted to drive over to the west side and surf. My favorite long board had been repaired and I was excited to ride the green” Aggro Tank” again. I had a classic expression session with no more than four guys in the lineup at any one time and plenty of shoulder to better than head high glassy waves After a couple of hours of great surfing the tide got high and the waves got junky so I caught a wave in and drove back to the north shore where the wind had come up enough for yet another light wind wave sail at Kuau. This sesh was just MAGIC! Due to the light wind there was very little chop on the wave face and they still had most of the size of the past few days. What a double dipper! What a blessing!
The waves and wind shut down for two days but it is up again today and the swell is supposed to jump up towards the evening for another smaller wave sailing event and then another on the weekend.
BTW: Please send your positive energy toward Baptiste. He is one of our local pro surfers and wave sailors. He got severely hurt surfing at Teahupoo in Tahiti recently.
Back in 2001 I was hired to help with the filming of the “Tow-In World Cup” a surfing competition being held at "Peahi aka Jaws".
My initial assignment was establishing two separate camera stations on the sheer cliff above “Jaws”. In addition to the camera platforms, a trail system with safety rails also needed to be constructed in order to safely transport the equipment and protect the crew that were posisitioned on these steep and awkward perches.
The film was to be shot in 35mm. This required a person constantly running freshly loaded film canisters from a production vehicle on top down the cliff down to the camera station below and transporting canisters of exposed film back to the production center for processing and reloading.
While I was working on my camera station and trail project, there was allot going on out on the wave. In addition to the usual surfing activity, another production crew was at work. Laird Hamilton, Derrick Dorner, and Dave Kalama, were towing in to waves in the 30’ range. They were wearing camouflage print wetsuits, firing weapons at each other with all three of them surfing the same wave. This was an action stunt for an up coming James Bond movie.
After the trail construction was completed the swell on the north shore dropped drastically causing the contest to be postponed.
Two weeks went by before I received the call telling me that a gimongus swell was on it's way and the contest was back on and we were going back to work.
The majority of the contestants and film crew, had left the island and gone back to their homes in various places around the world. They were now on the first flights back to Maui!
With all the logistics of a live film shoot, something had to go wrong, and things did!
In the middle of the event one of the rented 35mm movie cameras failed at another very important camera location.
Mercer Richards our assistant camera man was moved to that station to continue the shooting using his personal equipment.
Our camera man Greg Huglin received a radio call from the producer (Mike Slattery) asking which of the back up camera men he wanted to fill in as his assistant. His response was, "I already have a man Olaf is taking care of things quite well and all we need is a film runner to take his place".
This resulted in my assisting Greg Hugglin while he filmed “Jaws” at over 50’ with the best big wave "tow–in” surfers in the world competing for a $70,000 first place prize! The footage that we shot that day was incorporated in the film “Billabong Odyssey”. The address at the beginning of this post is the opening scene from "Billabong Odyssey"
Hmmm, looks there's some interesting, and exciting stories in this thread. I'll have to read through the pages when I have more time. : )
RE: Shore-break waves...
I was caught off guard, and picked up, and slammed down head first into the hard, wet sand under water three weeks ago by a SBW; No wonder the sea was practically a ghost town, (D'OH!) ; ) Anyway, I'm pretty sure I was knocked out for a second or two, but luckily I inhaled some salt water as it made me come to, and realize what was happening. It was a little unnerving because I didn't know if I was swimming up or down after being somersaulted around a few times. I have a fair amount of ocean swimming, and boogie boarding experience since childhood, mainly at S. Cali beaches, and this is the second time one of those MF SBWs almost did me in. The first time I got slammed down by one was when I was bodysurfing (or trying to) at 8 years old. I thought I was going to die.
Any stories on SBWs; I bet there's killer ones on the islands.
Another successful Hatteras trip in the books compliments Hurricane Bill and Tropical Storm Danny. Things looked promising during our drive down from the Jerz when I spotted a guy surfing off Fisherman's Island which is part of the Chesapeake Bay bridge/tunnel. I had read about people surfing there but never before witnessed it during the many times through this area. Feasted on many waves at the lighthouse despite a surly crowd. Had my best session at Rodanthe pier during the late morning incoming tide on 8/27. Clean 5 - 7 peeling rights with about 8 guys on it. Surfed until my arms were dead logs! Good size with some early morning sickness 8/29 as Danny passed during the night. Caught 5 - 7' the next day in the Jerz with epic crowds.
Gi-Gi I am sure that every one that has set foot in the ocean has a shore break story and I would like to hear them all. One of my own that comes to mind occurred on my first time trying to wave sail at Cape Blanco on the Oregon Coast. We had a four car caravan cruising the coast and searching for a windy place to sail and it turned out that the only accessible launch was out on Cape Blanco. When we got there my friends quickly rigged their sails and launched while I fooled with my gear. I wasn't paying attention to the size of the shore pound. After a while I finally got my stuff together. I carried it out and I was standing innocently in the knee deep water waiting for a gust to get me going when out of nowhere came an eight foot wave that just creamed me. It broke my mast in two and wrapped my sail around me so tight that I couldn't escape from it. I was then presented with several more of those badass punk waves before I was able to free my self of the sail. When the punishment was over I was once again standing in knee deep water feeling and looking like a real KOOK! When my friends came in from their wonderful ocean sailing experience one of them said to me " I meant to warn you about the shore break at this place!"
Hay Fat Paul, It sounds as though your season is off to a great start! I have been mostly wave sailing lately and it has been great.We have had some classic big wave days here on Maui that were only good for wavesailing due to the strong trade winds. ALTHOUGH, two days ago I scored an afternoon/evening sesh that will go down as perhaps my best surf session of the fall seasion. The forecast was for 2'Hawaiian and light trades. It turned out to be almost zero wind and close to double over head and that is conservative. There were four surfers and five S.U.P. guys out.We surfed till dark to the tune of a dynamic Maui sunset! Everyone got some great waves and showed a lot of aloha!
We are looking at some epic conditions starting later today thanks to Pacific typhoon Choi-wan. The surf along north facing shores of the Hawaiian Islands will be 6 to 10 feet with occasional larger sets today, then build to 12 to 15 feet tonight and Friday. There is a lot of west in this swell and we are definantly going have some island blockage but I don't mind if it dosent get completely out of control. I know one thing for sure, I WILL, be looking over my shoulder a lot. With a rising swell and the intervals at around 17 seconds we are bound to get at least a few rouge channel closers coming through and they will break my gear and try to drown my ass! The trade winds are already blowing so we will see!
My surfing buddy Mark called this morning with a report on the south side and the buoys indicate a rise in swell on the south side of the island as well. Now, Mark, isn't a windsurfer so that is good news for him and everyone that prefers to paddle for their waves with out the pesky (blasting)wind messing every thing up. Believe me I like paddling just as well as I like wavesailing. It's just that I have spent two decades developing my windsurf skills and we have the best wavesailing on the planet here on Maui. I do like it when every one gets to play!
Dave McGunn was a surfin' bum, half-crazed by the blazin' sun. From Waikiki to the Bering Sea, he rode 'em one by one. Now he hung offshore 'bout a mile or more, out where the dolphins played, And his wild eyes gleamed as he schemed and dreamed To ride the perfect wave. Oh, ride the perfect wave, Dave, ride the perfect wave. If you wait it out and you don't sell out, you may ride The perfect wave. He crouched in the spray and he waited all day till the sun gave way to the moon, And his legs grew cold and he grew old and wrinkled like a prune. And the years rolled by and the surf broke high and the 40-foot breakers sprayed. But he sneered at 'em all, sayin', "Too damn small; I'm waitin' For the perfect wave."
He was sleepin' on his board when he woke to a roar as thunder shook the sea. 'Twas the dreaded California quake of 1973. And he stared at the reef in disbelief, then paddled with tremblin' hands As a monstrous crashin' tidal wave came roarin' 'cross the land.
It was 12 miles high and it filled the sky, the color of boilin' blood. And cities fell beneath its swell and mountains turned to mud. Its deadly surf engulfed the earth and left not a thing alive. And high on the tip with a smile on his lip was Davey hangin' five. He hit the top of the Golden Gate at a thousand miles an hour, Over the top of the Empire State and the tip of the Eiffel Tower. And as he wiped out, you could hear him shout as he plunged to a watery grave, "Hey hi dee hi, I'm glad to die -- I've rode The perfect wave." Shel Silverstein
I have been recovering from a hernia surgery for the past month and have only surfed once and that was probably not a good idea even though the doc said that he didn't think it would hurt. I fully intend to be posting of some dynamic sessions down the road. Winter is on it's way here on the north shore. I would love to see some session reports(new and old)/and other ocean/water related stuff from you guys. Lets keep this thread alive, Trundlebum?
Hey Olaf, heal up and get better! Temporary set backs only stoke the fire to charge harder when you return to the lineup or take the sharp end. Worked a session in on Sunday morning 10/25 after a low passed through overnight. Beach erosion has produced a bumper crop of shallow sandbars that were firing but had some cross chop sickness due to the strong NW wind. Took my share of beatings while trying to pull into these hollow speed walls. Barreled via the back door on several of the six waves I rode. The water is chilling and now wearing my 4/3 suit. On the plus side, crowds have thinned, fish are on the move and the sunrise was beautiful.
just got back from a great couple of days in the south bay (poopertubes). perfect for a now every 52nd weekend warrior! head high southie, kinda mushy but fast and perfect glassy a frames from sunrise till about 9:00 a.m.. in true kook style i stayed out way too long (way after any swell went to hell) and paddled for everything that rolled in! i would give up every future day of climbing for half as many surfing (and i LOVE climbing)!
Thanks guys, This surgical event has been coming for a while! After the long recovery/rehab and the out of pocket expense of a major orthopedic surgery last year I chose to surf all the summer south swells and wave sail the early north swells. In the meantime I acquired health insurance again so it was very little out of pocket expense. Besides that the ocean hasn't been all that epic this month and I don't feel that I've really missed allot. It's been a month now and I'm feeling close to being ready to play again. We have a substantial swell forecasted for this weekend. I just may ride the bench for a while more and make sure that I'm totally healed. Thanks for posting gang!
Why do we use this expression? Well because the earliest recorded history of surfing tells about how Captain Cook discovered Hawaiians playing, quite literally frolicking in the very force that early, western, mariners highly feared - breaking waves!
In ancient times Hawaiians of all rank, cast, age and gender would take joy in riding breakers.
The myths and generalizations about the Hawaiian Ali'i (royalty) abound. Some true, most (as generalizations) were not.
In the Hawaiian language there is a powerful word -'Kapu'. It's meaning is all to often translated in English as 'Forbidden'. This is not true at all, this is a western (Judeo/Christian) twist of the word's true meaning. The true meaning is more aptly translated as 'Sacred'. For example a Hawaiian Ali'i might declare an over fished reef (under his/her rule/management) to be 'Kapu', meaning that it needs to be left alone and given time to heal and rejuvenate itself, not simply 'Forbidden'. You see the true meaning of the word is not as negative as the idea of something simply made forbidden to the masses. Kapu is a very positive and spiritual word in the Hawaiian language. Some Kapu were created by/for an Ali'i personal preference, perhaps guided by a family tradition or other unknown influences. An example of this is some Ali'i would declare themselves 'Kapu Alo' or 'Kapu Kua'. The first being a declaration that the leaders front side is sacred and hence all people would walk behind the royalty. The latter, 'Kapu Kua' meant that they had declared that their backside was sacred and they would walk at the end of a procession with all others out ahead of him/her.
So what does the Ali'i and the concept of Kapu have to do with surf? Well yes, sometimes a chief/ess would declare a certain break to be Kapu and only they or their friends/family or what have you, could surf that break. Sometimes there was an obvious reason that was logical, other times it was out of sheer selfishness. (Screw dem crowds, this is MY BREAK! )
As with most haole that arrive in the islands looking for da kine, keelah, world class surf, I was oblivious to Hawaiian culture for many years. However studying and learning the basics of the Hawaiian language was a goal of mine before I ever left the mainland. After a decade or so in the islands I had become saturated in surf, windsurf and the beach bum life style and began to settle down to my studies of Hawaiiana.
I was blessed with the teachers I met and came to study from. It was a very Zen way that I met these teachers. I did not go to them with a request to be taught. I never paid in currency for any of my lessons as I met my teachers when I was ready for them. I met them through mutual friends or by (if you will) 'Blind Fate'!
Hawaiiana is a term coined by one of my teachers Aunty Nona Beamer Essential it means 'Things unique to the Hawaiian culture'.
So what does the general study of Hawaiiana have to do with a surfing thread on a climbing forum? Well if you read this far then there should be no question really. It's like the discussion going on over at the 'Taco' regarding New and Old school climbers. One of the pervasive concepts in delineation seems to be that the New School(more sport oriented)Climbers do not seem to have very much regard for climbing history.
Again, what does the study of Hawaiiana have to do with modern surfing? Well, if surfing was first a Hawaiian sport, and if you consider this, Language is the foundation of any culture and... Hawaiian's call the Hula the life blood of the culture... Then don't we who call ourselves 'Surfers' and if we consider ourselves 'Old School' in our approach to the waves and ocean, owe a little tribute too the Hawaiians, their history and culture? If you answer yes then would it not be appropriate to recognize the practitioners of what the culture calls it's 'Life Blood', the Hula?
Maybe as modern surfers we don't care about the Hula, and then maybe we might be much better surfers if we studied Hula.
I do/did not dance Kahiko Hula. Instead I put my attention too the chants, their words/meaning, the metaphors they contained in their poetry and the delivery of the chants, ie: Hawaiian Chanting. I figured that since there was no Hula with out a supportive chant, that I would start my studies from that beginning and first learn at least the basics of the language and the art of Hawaiian Chanting. As you may have gathered by now, I am an avid student of Hawaiiana.
That said: A few posts back (4days ago) I said "I am going off climbing today... I'll post when I get home this evening ;)" I was thinking that I would tell a shore pound story that took place on Makena (big beach) on the south side of Maui. I thought about it because of Gigitte's Shore break/wave story/solicitation. But I could not! I had much more than waves on my mind!
I got a phone call two nights ago from a friend named 'Friday'. Friday is a friend and musical mentor who lives on O'ahu. His father was buddies and team mate on many a surf rescue team with Duke Kahanamoku. Friday called to give me the sad news that one of our most important teacher/practitioners of Hawaiian chant, hula and language had passed away.
Friday and I spoke for at least an hour. We 'talked story' about the times, our involvement, the direction of things and where we came from culturally regarding our teachers and studies. On a lighter note, Friday and I at one point in talking about people of the past got onto his dad, then Duke Kahanamoku which lead to an amazing comment by Friday. He said that 'In all his (61) years of living in Hawaii that he had never surfed a foam/fiberglass, surf board. He had only ever surfed his good 'ole 'Piper Board'. For those of you who do not know what a 'Piper Board' is, I tried a google search for an image or discription but found neither so I will save that for another story altogether.
The next morning I called my father and gave him the news. We discussed (again) how we felt when hearing the news of Genoa Keawe passing away. We felt (at that time) that many of the 'Old School' Hawaiians would soon follow behind her. Sure enough shortly after, Aunty Genoa, Aunty Nona passed and now Uncle George. My dad and I discussed what I call the 'erosional' process and how it relates to the Hawaiian culture. Who will police the younger generation? Do they need to be guided? Did the Kupuna/kumu (elder teachers) leave enough of a legacy that their students now teachering will do them justice in maintaining authenticity within the traditional cultural practices? Or will the culture just continuously degenerate as it is homogenized into modern western culture? Is Hawaiian culture destined to become nothing more than 'Jawaiian rap beats', Japenese girls in cellophane skirts and imported Phillipino shell lei dancing Hula? These are questions that only time can tell.
This ramble of mine is my own way of paying tribute the (now) late Uncle George Na'ope. I legally should not do this, but I am going upload and link to a few samples of Uncle George's chanting. I hope you listen to them and find that even if there is a language barrier for you, that you can still feel the power of this master chanter.
The first one is titled: 'Ho'opuka 'E Ka La Ma Ka Hikina' It is often used as a 'ka'i' or entry chant as dancers make their way to the performance area and take position in preparation for their main Hula/s of their presentation. It is a very spiritual chant that has many deeper metaphors woven into the poetry. My personal interpretation (in a nut shell) is that it is telling that with light, knowledge and wisdom all things are ultimately possible. As well, it speaks (in metaphor) about how we are all temporarily in the physical while occupying a space on the eternal conveyor belt of the life/death cycle. - Ho'opuka 'E Ka La
The second one is titled: 'Ku Lanakila' Somewhat of a Big Isle(Hawai'i) nature chant. It talks about the lofty majesty of the two mountains, Mauna kea and Mauna loa. It goes on to pay reference to the uplands above Hilo and the cold winds of 'Lilinoe'. She, Lilinoe physically manifests herself as cold winds and/or chilly, damp, swirling, light rain. Lilinoe is the sister of Poliahu the 'Snow Goddess. It goes on to talk about the cold and drenching rains of 'Kulani' area above Hilo and how this is where the mighty Koa and ancient gnarled Ohi'a trees can be found. In the third verse it speaks reverently about Pele the fire goddess and all of her ohana/family. The final stanza essentially outlines the procession from the union of Mother Earth and Father Sky through the emergence of the various nature gods/ess and finally the propagation of mankind ending with the declaration of respect for the wisdom of the elders. The final line, 'E Ola Makou a Mau Loa' says quite literally "May we all live(propagate/flourish) forever". - Ku Lanakila
The third is titled: 'Ka Iolani ' and it talks about a revered Hawaiian Ali'i. In the chant/poem she is compared to some of the beautiful, rare and endemic botanical wonders of Hawai'i. - Ka Iolani
The fourth is titled: 'Ulei Pahu '. This chant is very old and was composed before and foretelling of the arrival of foreigners from distant lands that eventually would overwhelm and homogenize the Hawaiian culture. This chant is being performed by Haumana Uniki/graduate students of Uncle George's at the time of recording. - Ulei Pahu
The last chant is titled: 'Na Nalu 'o Hawai'i' If you surf you should know the word 'Nalu', pronounced 'Nuhloo'. It is the Hawaiian word for 'wave'. You will here the word 'Kaiko'o' often. Kaiko'o is a tsunami or tidal wave. Again this chant is being performed by students of Uncle George. - Na Nalu 'o Hawai'i
Thak you for indulging me. I could not help myself... I needed to pay some sort of immediate tribute to 'Uncle George' and in my misguided way found myself doing so on a climbing forum and in a surfing thread no less.
'E 'Onipa'a Kakou 'E He'e Nalu, No na Kau a Kau 'E Ola Makou amau loa
I'll keave you with a couple old(Garage) recordings of my friend Friday singing:
Once again trundlebum you've,enlightened and entertained me with your very passionate well researched and entertaining journey through the halls of Hawaiian culture,history and customs. Your post is very appropriate for this thread in that in my opinion, The soul of surfing is Hawaiian! Aloha
Olaf, Just spoke via e-mail about the morrison girdle. It was crazy; that night while watching the science channel, they had a powered surf board featured as something coming out right around the corner. I guess it would be the "sport climbing of surfing" type of thing in that there will be no more waiting for swells. Kind of like a combination of being pulled into the huge waves by a jet ski and then having the power to outrun the whitewater at the end of the ride. Sounds unethical to a real surfer but I can see the sport change in the high end of difficult wave riding with this invention. Have you heard of anything like it. All it had was a type of rope off the front of it for a cheater sling for balance, and some type of propulsion underneath?! Jim
Jim they were demoing those powered surfboards here a few years ago and I intended to go and see what they were all about but didn't make it to any of the demo sessions. I haven't seen anything like the powered surfboard here on the north shore but maybe there are some of them on the south side. I really feel that if some one pulled up in any line up where the vessel could actually ride a wave it would be met with aggro energy(stink eye)! If it showed up again it would be less well received! I promise that the thing would not show up again! There are plenty of places a fun craft of that nature would be right at home like some rivers that I know of. It would be a hoot to just cruise on the thing. There might be a niche for it in surfing obscure and hard to get to spots where there is long and difficult access and no paddle in surfers around. I'm surprised that there isn't a promotional video On UTUBE of the guys ripping it up on some sick surf on their "Surf mo sticks"! It would be like tow in surfing which is very effective, but it requires a team of two seasoned and well trained/practiced partners to make that work. It also takes a very powerful jet ski to out run and be effective on the waves around here and I would be suspect if they told me that the surf mo stick had that much mussel. On the other if it did have the power and was light and shaped by Jimmy Louis I might look into one for myself.
Last time I was in Puerto in '07 it was so crowded I surfed down the beach a lot..
One afternoon that was only about 4-6', this jet ski duo comes out. The guy was dropping in way way way behind the peak and he'd already be in the barrel for a couple of seconds at the same spot you'd just be dropping in. He got shacked like 6 times in 20 minutes, it was ridiculous!!!
Forgot the guy's name, owns a surf shop on the East Coast somewhere..
I was so jealous. Then like 15 minutes later I took off on a screamer and got easily the longest backside tube ride of my life..One of those ones where you're like "where the hell am I, why am I still in this thing?"
I will preface with, this story is both old yet ongoing. It is not a unique story by any means. If you have never lived near a shore line that gets large, ocean swell waves that break along it's shore then you may find it entertaining/sobering.
When I first moved to Maui I would take a glance at the activity flyers. You know the ones, advertising for paragliding, down hill bike tours from the summit of Haleakala, Copter tours over the crater and a multitude of half authentic Polynesian cultural events such as lu'au. Somewhere, usually on the back cover of these, there was always printed a ten item checklist of water front/ocean side safety tips. The number one tip was: "1. Never turn your back on the ocean!". I'm sorry but as a kid who grew up a thousand yards or so from the water's edge I found this hysterical. I remember thinking "what is there some massive, multi headed, green eyed sea monster that in a matter of seconds can rear it's ugly head from the ocean and snatch unwitting tourists off the rocks and be gone faster than it came?". I was taking for granted a number of factors. The first being that I grew up on the ocean. As a kid and ever since I have taken joy at going down to the ocean during storms or just plain large surf and watching. I would conscientiously question and note wave numbers in a set. Which was the biggest of the set? How long between sets? Are the sets increasing in size and/or frequency... etc. The second factor I didn't take into account was that I had heard of, but never witnessed some of the 'sneaker set' war stories from the islands. Yes it is a good idea to print warnings to land lubber tourist that state: "Never turn you back on the ocean". Just make it that plain, who needs an explanation?
It was summer and had been virtually flat for at least two and a half weeks. I was sailing almost every day but still the surf jones was setting in. One morning I was sitting, sipping coffee with 'Big Bruce' on the front planter boxes of 'PikNiks' watching the tourists shuffle through town on their parade to Hana. Down the street from Mana Foods strolls my buddy 'Dode'. He stops and asks Bruce and I if we are gunna head over the south side? Why? Well turns out there is a growing, south, mysto swell happening! Bruce was busy but Dode and I caught it pretty epic that day and we surfed until we were noodle armed. In three sessions and in this order we hit Dumps then and a smaller Kihei break called 'Sidewalks'. By about 4pm we were so worked it was the end of our surf day so we decided to head back south from Kihei and go chill and burn on the beach at Makena. We were on 'Big Beach' for about twenty minutes when this tourist couple walks to the water's edge about eighty yards down the beach from us and started wading around . The beach was pretty empty (for the size of it) and the guy begins looking around almost seeming a little paranoid. Soon it was apparent that the guy wanted to jump in the water but had no surf jamms. As he tentatively stripped to boxer shorts he kept looking at us waiting for a disdainful look. We motioned to let him know we could not give a hoot and he could go ahead and skinny dip if he liked. I think we were hoping for just that and for his girl friend to join him in the pursuit. So into the water the guy goes. He is standing around in thigh/waist deep water, now and again taking a small plunge and standing back up. All this while he is essential oblivious to the ocean more than twenty yards off shore. Dode and I watch as this small set appears on it's advance towards the beach. The man was unaware of the set until it had actually become shore pound. As the first wave mounted he turned offshore and ran towards it. He was engaging a rather small set with wave faces of about three feet. Each wave of the four wave set he would jump up into the face and manage to make it back to having his feet on the sand as the wave expired behind him. It was apparent this guy didn't have a clue about going under a wave. About 8 minutes later... Lo and Behold, a nice meaty, four to six foot (Hawaiian numbers) set starts to show as it wraps the point on the south end of the beach. Dode and I were a little apprehensive about how this guy in the water was going to handle the situation but initially did nothing. Once the set was starting to jack on the beach we had stood up, hooted at the guy and motioned for him to be aware of the fate awaiting him(given his skill set) if he did not exit the water in the next couple dozen seconds. The guy hears our hoots and took it as an encouragement. With a quick look at the inbound set and a brief smile shot our way... he turned and started running into the water towards the first wave of the set. The first one had about a five foot face on it and the guy lucked out when he jumped up into it. He managed to not get pitched. The second one though, well he was not so fortunate. He was a little further out this time and the wave was significantly bigger than the first. Pitched, oh did he get pitched. Over the falls into about a foot of water then slammed by the secondary impact. He came out the back, sputtering and just in time for a big, deep breath and... "Ooooh NOooo, you kook!". He got just enough footing to kick a little jump as he was being sucked up into the third wave. We thought the first 'over the falls' was ugly but the second was of almost biblical proportion. This guy got so dredged. Dode and I were now on our feet and had started to run down towards the Horrified girl friend. By the time we closed the distance and got to water's edge he had taken two pretty serious rides over the falls and was sputtering, choke'n and generally groveling trying not to sucked up into the face of the last wave of the set. His efforts payed off and he did not get sucked up for another ride. Instead the wave broke just outside him and the initial impact sort of lifted him up enough that the white water ushered him into us, in thigh deep water. Dode and I each grabbed an arm as we helped the guy up the beach. I can't say 'Helped him to his feet' because he basically crawled with our assistance to a higher, drier ground. By the time the guy had regained composure, calmed his breathing and was relaxing, the ocean was absolutely flat and glassy again. Noticing this and the fact that he had just about seen his last dry inhalation... the man looks up from his sitting position at Dode and I standing there and said "WTF? I just wanted to wade and maybe take a plunge or two". We asked where they were from... "Ohio and our first ocean visit" was the answer.