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May 16, 2010 at 12:14 PM
By: Pete
The Battle of the Paddle Day One

"At one point I caught a wave with a five-man surf canoe just in front of me on the wave!"

Today [June 14th] I just got back from the Rainbow Sandals, Gerry Lopez, Battle of the Paddle and I wanted to type it down while its fresh in my mind.

     The real event started for me on Friday the 11th. I arrived on Oahu on Thursday with Ed Angulo but we spent the day buying supplies and preparing for the contest. No, the real fun started on Friday when my Dad flew in and we drove down to the event site in Waikiki! There were already people working on countless booths where businesses could showcase their products! After helping Ed load his things into his booth we went out and surfed! Now, anyone who has ever been to Maui knows that the south swells there are not even worth your time unless the planets are aligned! But Oahu is TOTALLY different. If there is even the slightest south swell there are head to shoulder high sets rolling in, and luckily for us we had a south swell! There were no contests today so we spent the whole day surfing! There was the slightest off-shore breeze making the wave hold up and wait to be completely shredded! At one point I caught a wave with a five-man surf canoe just in front of me on the wave! I was surfing alongside them the whole time while hooting and hollering whenever possible! Finally I spotted a bowling section that was... well bowling up! I shot straight down the line, dangerously close to the canoe, then I smacked the lip and threw a nice arc of spray into the sunset while staying virtually on top of the surf canoe! The tricky move was returned with a big shout from all of the canoe crew, it’s nice when different riders can come together on the wave and not get agro and salty (and when I can make funny alliterations like “canoe crew”. “New York Times” here I come)!  We surfed until we were dead which would later be known as a mistake but at least for the moment we had the most epic session!

     Later that night we went out to eat for Mark Angulo’s birthday. It was uber-crowded so we waited before we were seated. This was already after we had been standing either on our boards or on the Waikiki beach, now we were dirt tired and we had to stand even more! I don’t think I’ve ever stood so much in my entire life! But we finally got seated after an hour and a half, I know! Anyways, it was a great, and much needed meal and I think Mark loved his birthday so the day ended on a good note! A note that ended with us going off to sleep at midnight and a contest looming like a thunder cloud the next day...

Posted: June 22, 2010 at 11:57 AM
By: Windsport Magazine

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