Dane Kealoha is said to be one of the top 10 power surfers in the World, he is a Pipe master and was #2 in the World back in the 80’s We were stoked to see our friend David Langer made the connect to get him some gear and especially stoked to see his reaction! Right in line with the brand’s philosophies!
It is not very often that you see such a large storm parked off the California coast. So when I saw this forming up some 20ft+ seas coinciding with a 6ft+ High tide, I had to document it. My day started around 9 am at Morro Rock and the north jetty break wall, the harbor mouth was closing out and a few people were “Trying” to surf the inside at finger jetty, but the currents proved too much and most of them had a pretty short session… As I made my way to the break wall, I saw some massive waves capping way out to sea and some great explosions into the jetty. Not the biggest I have seen, but still impressive. Once the tide got closer to it’s maximum high, waves actually started surging all the way up to the walking trail and the Fire Department deemed it was time to close down the area for viewing.
So, after about an hour of shooting the big waves at Morro Rock, I decided to head up to Cayucos to see if the Cayucos Pier was still in tact, as it has been shut down to public access due to pilings breaking off. The pier has been reinforced, but who knows what this strong storm could do. I arrive in Cayucos as the high tide is peaking, the water is surging up into the parking lot and everyone is having a good look at the mayhem. This is when I see a couple of buddies, Kurt Roberts and Nate Ditmore. They say they want to head north in search of waves and to see what the heck is going on up there with this abnormally large swell. We pile into Nate’s SUV and head up the coast to Big Sur.
Big Sur California is a special place, I have photographed it for over a decade keeping my photos relatively obscure and landmark free when the waves are firing. Over the years it has become a place that has been heavily exploited by the Surf Magazines and the photographers they deploy. This day, we did not see a single soul in the water in Big Sur because it was 20-30ft and mostly storm surf… I gotta run now, enjoy the shots! MLJ
Wow, what a swell. I stayed up from about 12 midnight tto 2:30 watching these swells. Seeing a lifeless body floating around on the inside at Nazare within the first half hour really shook me up. Then to find out it was Maya!? No matter what, maybe no 100 footers were ridden, but it looked sketchy out there. The cliff’s, the size, that inside meat grinder. Damn.
Taking the red eye from Maui to Lax connecting to San Jose was hard enough after two days of shooting some of the biggest waves I have ever seen at Jaws. With no sleep, I now need to find a ride from the airport to the Mavericks event as I am on the elite photo team consisting of a hand full of my hero’s in the big wave photography World. I call upon an old friend Ben Andrews, an acclaimed big wave surfer who would normally be surfing Mavericks on days such as today. But today he is my savior, he picks me up and I am already 2 hours late to get on the media boat. We rush to half moon bay watching the live stream on his cell phone in his beat up soccer mom van. As we fly down the freeway fixated to the mobile device, I see a HUGE set detonate on the screen, “Ohh shit, it’s big out there.” as we draw closer to the event, I frantically try to figure out how I will get out to the line up, calling the contest director does not help as everyone is fixated on the action and nobody wants to come pick up my dumb ass. I instruct Ben to just get me down to the launch ramp, maybe I can hitch a ride out? As we roll up to the launch ramp there is only one boat. A small Mexican made Ponga boat that the captain had fabricated in Ensenada for $3800. Anyway, I run up to the boat and a photographer is messing around with some gear. I give him my sob story and he is very nice to allow me to go out to the line up with them. I wave good bye to Ben, still sitting in his white van. The photos in this gallery start up where I am leaving off… Enjoy. www.azhiaziam.com
Az.Hi.Az.I.aM is an Aerial Sports brand that supports those who live life to the fullest! phone order: 805-771-0199 Az.Hi.az.I.aM Shop 1140 Front Street Unit B Morro Bay California 9am-6 pm 7 days a week pacific standard time *Unless the waves are good. firstname.lastname@example.org
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