Sunday, October 27, 2013

Whale of a Tale

Went to see the huge sperm whale get pulled out of the pier this weekend.  It was huge and one my friends caught tons of fish off it the other day.  He was one of the first guy to find it and it was his best fishing day of his life.

My nephew Maika made our family proud watching him jam at the Roy Sakuma ukulele concert.  Keep practicing and do your best!

Also tried our luck at the heeia pier fishing tournament but all we caught was a tan and some fishing tales to tell about the big one that got away.   It was a great experience for us.  Biggest catch was a Ahi over 200 lbs and Marlin over 300 lbs. Mahalo to all the sponsors and Congrats to all the winners!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Best Surf Backdrop

Been catching up with emails, phone calls, downloading my photos and work since we returned and found this amazing shot I took at one of Mentawai's secret spots.  We were lucky to catch one of the biggest swell of the year and lot of spots were unrideable but we were determined to find waves.  I told the Captain to check this hidden spot not on the surf map charts (so please don't ask me where) and we scored one of the most scenic surf spots I photographed. The swells would come in and first hit this outer rock creating a spectacular explosion of whitewash before reaching the inside ledge.  There were two spots to sit and the wave would bend outward and barrel over a shallow reef.  I remember it was so glassy that you couldn't make out the wave from the sky and with only a handful of guys out it was a session to remember...

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Hawaii arrival

Home sweet home!

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Mentawai departure

Mentawai Photographer Anton

Meet Anton Hendrix.  Our Waiter/Server on board the Naga Laut.  If he was not catering to the clients he was busy taking photos.  He enjoyed taking pictures and I think next year he will have his own camera.

He loved to fish as well!  Here is hand lined a nice mahi in on our last day.

If I wasn't taking pictures he was and here he got one of me, clifton, and Dedit going out for a surf.

Thanks for the surf shot Anton!

Our final group shot!

Friday, October 18, 2013

Mentawai Risks & Rewards

Our morning view outside the mentawais are unreal!  I've been sleeping by 9 pm so I'm up before sunrise to check the surf and beautiful sunrises.  This is one of the great rewards of the Mentawais.

Every person has their own water bottle with their identification.  We use it to drink, brush teeth, mix gatorade. Who would believe drinking out of one bottle for 10 days straight?

J.R. Matsumura was super fun guy and great surfer to have on the trip and it was a first of many for him.  First time eating sashimi in his life!  Here he is about to sample some omilu sashimi.  By the end of the trip he was making his own poke bowls.

That Uku I caught the other day became lunch for everyone the next day.  Our chef made steamed Uku chinese style which broke da mouth.

Amidst the rewards of the best waves in your life there are lots of risks involved when surfing remote places.  The reefs are sharp and some spots are shallow so we looking out for each other is a must.  Here our group helps clean the wounds of James Oshiro after taking a big wipeout.  

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Mentawai Friendships

One day after a 3 hour surf session, Chris Cordell decided to go for a paddle with one of the locals canoe.  He tried to stand up but took a spill and had to bail the water out of the boat.  Luckily the local kid offloaded all his coconuts before Chris went out on the canoe.  Chris is a math teacher in Hawaii and was fun to have on the boat and spent a lot of time surfing.  

Ht's was fun 2-4 ft with a couple nice inside ones.  It was super fun surfing with the local kids there.

We troll during boat rides from one spot to another and here Anton (boat crew in middle) hand lined this nice bull mahi which provided our group a huge slab of sashimi.

Sunsets are spectacular and with no city lights the stars are even for awesome.  A lot of time is spent here on the upper deck where we hang out.

This trip Macaronies was one of the hot spots again and with waves like this everyone was happy the joined this years Red Sea Mentawai trip.

As with every trip, its really about relationships.  Many of our surfers did not know everyone going but after the trip we all became much closer as new friends were made that will last for eternity.  

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Mentawai lifestyle

Dinner is served! Life is good in mentawais! 

Mentawai journal day 7-10

Life on the boat is simple. This is our icebox where we get all our drinks.

Our meals are 4x per day and we eat very good!

Local villagers come out and try to sell us carvings to make money.

Great diving day as we got some fish for our pupu hour. We are now on our way home with lots of stories and photos to share.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Mentawai Journal Day 5-6

We arrived at Macaronies on Day 5 with just one other boat in the lineup and our group of surfers were super excited.  Here we are on our way to the resort to check emails.

The waves are still pumping 3-5 ft with some double up ledges outside with big barrels.  Decided to take my new 5’9” Kashiwai out which proved to be a good move.  Here is one of the bomb sets which no one wanted.

Life on the boat is great!  No worries, just go with the flow and enjoy the moment.  This is our living room where we eat, watch movies, play cards, and hang out. Meals have been awesome with Steak, pasta, chicken, shrimp, and all kinds of food on the menu.

Our crew is awesome!  Boy our cook, Anton our waiter, and Alawa our boat man is always on it.

We are fortunate to be able to surf perfect waves and share amazing stories of this ultimate boat trip. 

Waves are still fun at 2-4 ft now so time to wax up and go surfing!  Tomorrow afternoon we will be going to Sikakap village to fill water and tomorrow we move on to a new spot called Roxy rights and/or Thunders before we head to HTs for some barreling rights.  Until then I’m signing off till our next internet connection.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Mentawai Surf Journal Day 1-4

One of the biggest swells of the year and we have been busy surfing some of the best waves of our lives!  We started up north in the playground area with overhead surf on day 1 and 2 with 5 spots ridden.  This is David Watmull on a double overhead wave at 4 bobs.

Perfect lefts peeling forever!

The swell arrived on day 3 (Oct 9) as forecasted and it was big!  We moved to Telescopes where it was going off 4-6 ft plus and perfect!  Sean Nakamura got this sick wave which made his day!

James Oshiro also took off on some bombs sets impressing everyone! 

Clifton Yasutomi bottom turning on the beauty!  Clifton always dreamed of surfing a perfect left and with majority being regular footers he was super happy!

Day 4 (Oct 10) the swell was still pumping big!  We checked lances left and it was 8 ft and bumpy so we decided to move the boat further south in search for some rideable waves.  We pulled up to this secret left which proved to be one of the most photogenic  break ever!  Day 5 (Oct 11) we are now at macaronis surfing the most rippable left in the world.  Stay tuned…

Sunday, October 6, 2013


Arrived in Jakarta now waiting for our final flight to Padang. 
Not much selection on the menu. Duck egg? Fried fish? Scrawny chicken? Decided on Starbucks with free wi-fi.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Travel friendships

New friends..James Oshiro, Chris Cordell, and David watamull. 
Old friends..JR Matsumura and Clifton Yasutomi ready for their best trip ever!

Indo surf report

OMG!  forecast looking good!

Taipei transit

After 10.5 hours of flying and 5 movies later we arrived in Taipei's Novotel hotel.  Everyone is doing well and ready for a night cap. For me, I'm ready for bed..good night. Zzzz

Friday, October 4, 2013

Aloha Hawaii

Travel time!

Next stop

Let the red sea ocean adventure begin! Waiting for my group to check in...

Overcoming your fear

Imagine being up on stage in front of thousands of people, bright lights blinding you and you are feeling nervous inside as butterflies take over.  Well this is what 9 year old Malaki Paul had to deal with his fear and he overcame it by faith and trust.  If you ever find yourself a little afraid, remember this song.  Click here to watch video

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Ready for pick up!

Got the call today from Jason Kashiwai!  Yup, Ready for pick up!  Just in time for our upcoming trip, no time to cure, just pack and go.  Only a surfer knows the feeling of picking up a new board.  It's like Christmas or a special holiday.  Extra cautious, polishing it up, deciding what fins, and of course most important, sticker placement!  Luckily my Red Sea Stickers are laminated right into the board.

Mahalo Jason for the new Red Sea quiver!  Can't wait to ride um'.  The Ht's special on the left and macaroni special on the right looks insane!  Time to start packing as a nice swell is expected to arrive while we are there maybe some double overhead barrels?  Will try my best to keep you updated with pictures but internet is only available in a select areas.

How to Represent Red Sea

Got some photos from my friend Mike Uyehara diving with great white sharks in Guadalupe Island. Mike and his son had a tiger shark encounter 2 years ago that made the local news and he came with us to La Paz this year and speared his first marlin.  Notice the man in the grey suit behind him?

While everyone was wearing black wetsuits, here Mike is standing out representing Red Sea with his bright yellow shark attracting t-shirt!  Thanks Mike for sharing your photos.