“Well I’m not going to lie, it was pretty fucking big” -Josh Kerr-
You know when Pancho Sullivan comes out of the water shaking his head in disbelief, Sunset is out of control. By no means was Pancho alone in his Sunset struggles today, another surfer with plenty of North Shore and big-wave experience, Love Hodel, found himself in the unenviable position of having his back pinned against the reef with his board pushing down on top of him. Many of the O’Neill World Cup of Surfing competitors looked like they were just trying to stay alive today as Sunset unleashed it’s fury on the field. It was big, really big. Wave face heights were in the 20- to 30-foot range and completely dwarfed competitors and water safety officials alike.
Still, heat after heat, each surfer paddled out and battled at one of the world’s gnarliest waves. And the beauty of it all is that it was available for all to see via webcast. While viewing an event like this doesn’t compare to seeing it live, it’s huge for surfers and fans alike to have an awesome scene like this transmitted throughout the world. The surfers put it all on the line today and I found myself unable to pull away from the computer, just sitting there watching in complete amazement.
The webcasts being used aren’t perfect, but there is plenty of progress being made and that has me stoked beyond belief for the future. It was one of the ultimate tests of man vs. nature today, and technology is allowing these surfing warriors to get the recognition and respect that they deserve.
With that being said, it’s likely that the final rounds of the O’Neill event will be held tomorrow. The forecast is calling for stellar conditions as a slight drop in the swell will leave Sunset in great shape. Contestants and fans can expect gorgeous, contestable 16- to 20-foot wave face heights as a winner is decided in the second leg of the Vans Triple Crown.
Trust me, you don’t want to miss a single second of tomorrow’s action.
Posted by Shaun on Wednesday, December 3rd, 2008 in Surfing.