22 April 2008

Fours (Oahu South Shore), 18 April 2008

Happily, the Xanadu arrived in Honolulu safe and sound. United didn't even charge me an oversize bag fee, although TSA opened the lock and rifled through the board bag, failing to replace my booties which were to serve as extra padding on the points of the half-moon tail. At the car rental lot we discovered some intermediate American cars are foolishly built with rear seats that don't fold down (a necessity for stowing the board when leaving it with the car unattended), but eventually we pulled away in a Nissan with the surfboard atop on soft roof racks.

Our oceanfront Waikiki condo fronted the channel between Fours and Threes, and Friday morning I made the long paddle to the lineup where the surf was up to head high with lulls. Being Waikiki, it was crowded, and hard to find a spot somewhat to myself. After sitting on the right shoulder at Fours for a while, I tried the left, where a caught one or two but blew the pop-ups. Then a bigger outside set came through, and an overhead wave closed out with me just inside of it. I'm thinking, I can duck-dive this, I can do it - ah, sadly, no. Holy fuck! I have never been tumbled so hard as that before; the wave was waaay more powerful than I'm used to. And my spankin' new SeaSpecs, red ones to match my board, that I'd put on for the first time only 30 minutes before - gone, lost to the deep, swimming with the fishes. Damn. I stayed out a while longer but wasn't getting any waves, and since I was getting cold (yes, cold in Hawaii!), I made the long paddle back to the beach.

Friday afternoon, with the slightest encouragement from S, I paddled out again. This time I took my watch to verify that it was actually a 10-minute paddle to the reef break. The water was shallow all the way out, less than 3-4 feet, with a mostly rocky bottom that I know from painful previous experience is inhabited by spiky sea urchins. Unfortunately I again forgot my seasickness wristbands, and with the Xanadu responding to every messy wavelet in the choppy channel, by the time I reached the lineup I felt awful. An big outside set rolled through just then bringing waveriders to my previously quiescent spot, and I had a couple of near-collisions in rapid succession combined with stomach-churning whitewash. I turned around and made a miserable 10-minute paddle in.

The other side of the condo faced Surfline's South Shore cam location.

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