There are a few moments in life when you say, “Are you kidding me?” That is all I can say about the waves that have been exploding onto the Pipe reef. After the first day of competition, the contest had to be put on hold because the waves were too big at Pipeline. If that is not an eye opener for a surfer I don’t know what is.
The contest resumed in XL Hawaiian surf. The second day of competition brought epic rides as well as epic carnage. Paddling out in these conditions is 100% commitment. The sets were consistent and large from the first heat to the last heat of the day. Second and third reef at Pipe was breaking during some sets
Some standout performers of the day were Bruce Irons, Alex Gray, Chris Ward, Balaram Stack, Carlos Munoz, Koa Rothman, Nate Yeomans and Dylan Graves. Dusty Payne, Graves and Stack scored perfect 10.00-point rides in their heats. Payne lost his heat with 1 ride . . . the perfect 10. Bruce Irons (17.47) was in form as he took a strong hold on his heat with two heavy rides. Alex Gray surfed two heats during the second day of competition with stitches in his leg from the previous lay day monster swell. He charged the mega swell with a warrior’s heart.
In some of the heats, if you had one decent ride that is all you needed, as it was tough to pick the waves that would line up. The barrels were thick and powerful. I counted at least 7 broken sticks throughout the day. There were plenty of clean up sets, which kept the surfers’ adrenaline going throughout the contest. Getting caught on the inside was not an ideal situation today. The final day will be a classic finish to one of the biggest swells for a Pipe contest of all time.
Stay tuned for the contest wrap up as the finals are expected to run tomorrow.
~P. Franklin / GUERRILLA SURF – GuerrillaSurfers@gmail.com