December 10, 2009

Legendary Big-Wave Surf Competition Held in Hawaii: For the first time in five years, the conditions on Oahu's North Shore were right to hold a legendary big-wave surfing contest -- the Quiksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau. The event only takes place when waves are at least 40 feet tall. Greg Long, 26, won in the last heat over nine-time world champion Kelly Slater. The competition is named for a legendary surfer and lifeguard who saved numerous people in conditions no one else would attempt, inspiring the catchphrase Eddie Would Go.

posted by rcade to extreme at 02:39 PM - 8 comments

This is awesome! It's good to see that conditions were to the point where the event was able to take place this year since it hasn't been held since 2004 due to low level waves.

Eddie Aikau is a legend that many people here in the mainland do not know about but he is still a man that should be remembered.

Great post rcade!

posted by BornIcon at 02:52 PM on December 10, 2009

The Eddie over at Waimea is incredible, particularly since the surfers are paddling in, but the even bigger surf is on Oahu's North Shore at Jaws, where the tow-in crews really tear it up.

posted by sbacharach at 03:00 PM on December 10, 2009

The legendary Cowabunga from Downunda?

I think that might be a Back to the Beach reference. I believe that's an internet first. Pointe a moi.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 05:36 PM on December 10, 2009

Yes, here in California we are getting the waves that Hawaii had a few days ago. Big surf. Hawaii had sets up to 50 feet and now those conditions are appearing at Mavericks and other west coast big wave spots. Most of the competitors jumped planes for California as soon as the Eddie Aikau was finished to chase the swell to the West Coast.

posted by Atheist at 06:42 PM on December 10, 2009

I'm not a surfer, but living out here, there is something magical about surfing that goes way beyond the "cool" factor. I'm not saying this is true for everyone involved in surfing, but for many of my kids, there's a whole way of life associated with surfing that goes way, way beyond the "whoa, dude" stereotype. Its almost a zen "one with nature" sort of thing.

This whole last week my students that do surf had this far away, glazed over look in their eyes about half the time that suggested their brains were on the North Shore with this weeks amazing waves no matter what they were doing.

I wasn't able to get away to watch any of the competition this year, but if you're ever in Hawaii when the Eddie Aikau is being held, you will thank yourself forever for checking it out. As amazing as the photos are, they don't even begin to do justice to it.

Thank you for posting this rcade - and for giving a shout out to Mr. Aikau himself. Mr. Aikau, it needs to be stressed, would have been a legend in Hawaii regardless of his tragic end - even though, I confess, that's what raised him to the status of local icon.

posted by Joey Michaels at 08:13 PM on December 10, 2009

Big props to rcade for this post! Thank you so much.

posted by DudeDykstra at 10:56 PM on December 10, 2009

Eddie would, but Jesus Christ I wouldn't.

/Has 9 foot longboard, but also is way too old.

posted by owlhouse at 05:21 AM on December 11, 2009

This whole last week my students that do surf had this far away, glazed over look in their eyes ...

That surf culture vibe is here in St. Augustine too. I proctored a state achievement test in an elementary school not long ago. During every single break, most of the boys spent the entire time talking about the surf conditions.

posted by rcade at 09:16 AM on December 11, 2009

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