When Dick Graham
was at my place he said that he might be able to get me into the Duke's
contest and that I would be pretty sure of getting into the Makaha contest.
So, Dick phoned Kimo McVay, the guy who organises the Duke's contest and it was almost an impossibility to get in but, I certainly could enter the Makaha contest, which I did.
Dick Graham organised it for me; actually, I was pretty lucky because I was late to get my entry in. Makaha is really a big contest and I was stoked to be in it.
We arrived in
Hawaii the day of the Duke's contest but, by the time we got to the north
shore, the meeting was over.
It was late in the afternoon when we arrived at Sunset and everybody was out. there and it was crowded.
It was different to last year when there were only a few out.
There was more friction with surfers.
It's good when you can get out there and use your own ability against the waves and think, well that's the best, instead of having to fight against someone.
However, it's all competition in ...
Guys like Hemmings and Cabell were playing it cool they could sense when the waves were coming. They knew the game so well and I didn't.
But this is what I have learnt and I'll know from now on.
All you've got to do is play it a little cooler and know the game.
I was getting myself all worked up and they were so cool, they knew the surf: Makaha is a contest where there are so many tricks and angles and loopholes and everything like that.
I was paddling out and I could see a wave coming through, a smaller wave and I couldn't resist it.
I would take off on it and as I was paddling back out again a bigger set would come through.
This is the true test, if you can paddle out again and go through six beautifully shaped inside waves, if you can pass them and go to a huge lull out the back and wait; this is the true pressure test in a
contest such as the Makaha.
Cabell and Hemmings knew this.
While I surfed everything I could, they knew the score and went outside for the, bigger waves and longer rides.
At the time they announced the placings I felt disappointed.
I thought that I had done a lot better.
But, afterwards when I summed it all up and thought about it a little bit more, they were right.
Third place is not bad and I tried the best I could.
Just getting to the finals of the Makaha is terrific.
Honolua Bay was
probably the best surf we had over there, although Haleiwa was pretty good.
We had Honolua at 15 -18 ft., consistent and only 12 guys in the water.
Five boards were broken in half, the othe five went in and that leaves me in the end, and that's no kidding.
I had it to myself for an hour and a half.
It got so big that I had to paddle in after a while because the whole Bay was closing out from the left point.
It was unbelievable.
There was a mass of white water all around yoll involving you with more turbulent masses.
The point was the same, mass, mass, mass; little people way up on the hill and everything.
It was so involved, so powerful, such a big thing.
Boards are being broken, money's being thrown on the rocks and cash registers blown out.
The off-shore wind, the colours, brown skin and goose pimples, the huge waves lifting up behind you and the driving down, the leaving your board for few seconds as you take the drop.
It was fantastic, it was beautiful.
I was riding one of the small stubby boards.
I borrowed it from Wayne Parkes, the New Zealand surfer.
Maui is only an Island for surf, it has nothing else to offer except beauty.
Honolua Bay is THE spot, there's just no other place that would ever compare.
You only go to Maui to surf Honolua, if you're there for a week and you only get it on one day you'll be so jazzed -it was one of, my most incredible surfing experiences.
Volume 10 Number 3,
March 1968, pages 10 to 14.