Stab Magazine | An Epic Afternoon At Honolua Bay

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An Epic Afternoon At Honolua Bay

Stab was there, almost!

cinema // Dec 15, 2017
Words by stab
Reading Time: 2 minutes

Wanna hear something funny? Like really really depressing for me but for you, funny? I’m in Maui right now, living out my Bucket List™ experience of surfing Honolua Bay with the talented Tanner Hendrickson, and somehow we missed the best session of the swell. And when I say best session of the swell, I mean like 5-10x better than anything we got to surf. Let me set the scene:

Tanner and I arrived at Honolua around 10 AM. Dusty Payne was hanging at the top of the point, still wet from a morning session which he described as mediocre. “It’s getting cleaner already though,” Dusty informed us. “I’d get out there.”

We got out there. 

The next three hours involved a lot of paddling, duck diving, and bouncing around on warbly overhead walls. The swell was raw and the wind was wrong so perfect Honolua it was not. Riding a standard shortboard on the well-overhead lines, I found myself unable to set the rail for a turn and with no barrels in sight, my session was relegated to riding straight on rollers. 

Around 1 o’clock we broke for lunch, where we found Albee Layer to be equally unenthralled with his morning session. “I caught two waves and went in,” Albee told us.

And he’s right that the waves were pretty shit, but I also think Albee doesn’t like Honolua very much. Tanner, on the other hand, is enamored with the wave. Says it’s his favorite in the world. So after quickly scarfing down a kale salad, he was keen to get back out to the point. 

When we returned, the waves looked more or less the same. There was plenty of swell, and it was bending in at a favorable angle, but the confluence of side-onshore winds and a jumbled swell made Honolua’s tube into a crumbly, chandeliering mess. So we left.

Not thirty minutes into our drive back to Haiku, we got a call from Tanner’s neighbor and filmer Elliott Leboe. “It just got so sick at The Cave,” Elliott told us. “Three guys in a row just got spit out of tubes.” 


But could we trust him? Having watched Honolua all day, it was hard to imagine the waves could have magically cleaned up right as we left.

A decision had to be made, and we chose to keep driving. Turns out we were driving the wrong way as the Cave was fucking pumping. And then today was head high. 

Without further ado, please enjoy the dream session that I never got to surf. And Maui, I’ll be back. 


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