When you live in or near a surfing community, big surf is a Happening, an event that brings everyone together – locals, tourists, young, old…
This only happens about once or twice a year. So nobody wants to miss the chance to see the few brave souls challenging ocean giants on their surfboards.
That’s why people come from all over the island, or even the world. Kids get taken out of school. Moms pack picnic lunches instead of cooking a meal. Tradesmen quit their jobs. Golfers stop golfing and start walking and gawking, like everyone else. Including the Maui County employees (see the truck – right).
That’s what Elizabeth and I did this morning – even before breakfast.
“I heard the surf crashing against the shore last night while I was in the spa (around midnight),” I told Elizabeth.
Just like I used to hear it at night when I lived in Western Australia near Yallingup. So I knew we had to go this morning.
We are blessed to live within 3.5 miles of one of the greatest surfing attractions on this planet – the Jaws. Back in 2001, the then world record of surfing was set here when some crazy surfer who surfed a 75-foot wave and lived to talk about it (see Christmas Jaws Happening, Dec 2009).
By the time we rolled down our hill to Hana Hwy in our trusty El Jeepo, hundreds of cars were already parked everywhere. Those with 4WD, like ourselves, continued on for another two down a dusty dirt “road”. Hundreds of others hoofed it down the hill on foot… from small children to pensioners and everything in between.
We knew a “secret” bypass which saved us he crowding and the dust raised by hundreds of 2WD vehicles for about 90% of the way to Jaws. But the bypass was quite treacherous in places with ruts 3-4 feet deep and the dense bush and cane grass blocking the dirt track in places. We only came across one other car – also a Jeep, that attempted this route.
It was exciting, but we made it. And then we let the Jaws ocean spectacular begin…
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BIG SURF AT HO’OKIPA POINT
After Jaws, we moved on to Ho’okipa Point, about 5.5 miles west of Jaws. The scenery there just as spectacular, only in a different ways.
First, we were able to get right down to the sea level to take some of the shots. At Jaws, unless you are a surfer, you can only observe the action from about half a mile away.
Second, at Ho’okipa the ocean is wide open. So the waves are longer and resemble the white mountains of foam and water crashing against the shore.
Here’s also a short video I made at this magical spot…
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And then just before leaving Ho’okipa Pt and heading back home for a hearty breakfast, I spotted a bent tree that provided a perfect photo-op for a Yin-Yang balanced Gemini… 🙂
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UPDATE JAN 23, 2015