Hawaii February 09, 2016
Everyone Has Waited 6 Years For This Amazingly Perfect Time In Hawaii
The Quicksilver In Memory of Eddie Aikau Big Wave Invitational is perhaps the most prestigious event in surfing, and event organizers have announced that the contest is at a green alert for Wednesday, February 10 at Waimea Bay, on Oahu’s north shore. You see, the competition requires waves of more than 20 feet (with 40 foot faces) to run, and the conditions have to be absolutely perfect.
Every year, the big-wave invitational has a holding period from December 1 to February 28, during the biggest active swell season on Oahu’s north shore.
But the conditions haven’t been right for several years, and the last event was held in 2009. If the green alert continues, it will be the ninth time the competition has run in its 30-year history.
The event is held in memory of Eddie Aikau, Waimea Bay’s first lifeguard. As a lifeguard, he saved more than 500 people and became famous for surfing the huge Hawaii waves, winning several awards, including the 1977 Duke Kahanamoku Invitational Surfing Championship.
In 1978, Aikau joined an expedition on a Polynesian voyaging canoe headed for Tahiti. The journey was abandoned when the canoe capsized after encountering a gigantic storm. Aikau survived the night and decided to paddle to land for help, but never reached land, despite his unprecedented skills in the ocean.
The Eddie is the original big wave riding competition, and is the ruler against which every big wave surfing event in the world is measured.
In 2009, the last year the competition was held, a record 30,000 people watched the event from the beach, cliffs and road around Waimea Bay.
The 2009 competition received more national media coverage than any other surfing event in history.
Greg Long, a Big Wave World Tour surfer won that year.
According to event director Glenn Moncata, “It has taken us six years to pull the trigger, but this is the first swell we have seen that is truly lining up as an Eddie swell.”
But this year looks perfect, and the event is scheduled to take place this Wednesday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., though the waves may decide otherwise.
Every year, several professional surfers are invited to participate in the event. This year, the featured invitee is Clyde Aikau, Eddie’s brother and winner of the second Eddie event.
Here’s to hoping the waves don’t disappoint! For more information about the competition, head over to the
Quicksilver Eddie website.