If you had one sick day to use this year, Thursday would’ve been it. The Quiksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau had everyone coming down with something when the contest finally ran for the first time since 2009.
Green lighted only 9 times in the last 31 yrs, the contest requires min 20-ft waves (40-ft faces) for a consistent 8-hrs. Nearly a decade passed without the right conditions from 1989-99. Despite earlier false alarms, tens of thousands found their way back to the bay.
We made it to Haleiwa just before 10. The lineup started from there. Cars parked miles away. People walking, biking, with backpacks and coolers. No one bothered by the distance or traffic, just happy to be there.
With the beach packed, we made our way up to the heiau–sacred place for a sacred day.
Pass the heiau, an easy trail leads to several lookouts.
A few new friends and a direct view of the action. Don’t forget water and some shade.
After a couple heats we made our way back down. The parking gods smiling down on us.
Fewer views of the surf, but not a bad seat in the house. Something going on wherever you look. I think these guys are on to something. By 2pm the sun was in full effect.
Prayers and the Hawaiian Water Patrol kept everyone safe. These guys are half the show and legends in their own right.
This years Eddie was a symbolic passing of the torch and solidified two surf legends’ place in history all in one day–Clyde Aikau at age 66 and 23 yr old John John Florence. The stars aligned and everything fell into place. All was right with the world.
Even with no knowledge of surfing you could sense it was a powerful day. Mother nature, the people, the surf, the legend–how can you not call in sick next time? Eddie Would