How to end up face-first in a ditch!
ILast Wednesday, red-helmeted warrior Jamie O’Brien took on and, briefly, conquered Waimea’s shorebreak on a six-foot long foam surfboard.
The great Hawaiian surfer, who is 190 pounds of rock hard muscle with 40 pounds of sturdy protective fat, and who once told me, “A big gut helps you breathe bigger and better”, woke up to a fifteen-to-twenty-foot Waimea Bay swell and saw this post by Nathan Florence.
“I had no interest in paddling out to big, fat Waimea with a hundred guys out,” says Jamie. “But if you get the right barrel in the shorebreak, it’s the most iconic thing you can do on the North Shore.”
Jamie knows that if Waimea is fifteen-to-twenty out they back, it’s going to be eight-to-ten, with a few twelve-footers on the sand.
Still, it ain’t easy.
“I paddled non-stop for three hours. The current is so strong that if you let your arms go limp, you’re probably going to die.”
Describe death scene?
“It takes you down to Jump Rock, which is no man’s land. If you get stuck down there the lifeguards will just leave you. It’s that gnarly.”
The way you manage the current, which Jamie describes as “out of this world” is with your head down and arms rolling over and if you feel like you’re a little too close to Jump Rock, you paddle out into the middle and back in again on the north side of the Bay.
This roll-in shorebreak tube, abbreviated on Instagram below, was Jamie’s second of the seven waves he rode in three hours.
“I rolled in, barely made the drop, got around the corner, put the brakes on, it sucked up, bowled out and the next thing I’m in the barrel. Holy shit! And it spat me out!”
Jamie’s pal Dante Silva had been out all night when he was roped into the session. Jamie outfitted him in a float suit and told him, “We are on.”
Dante even caught the wave of the day.
“He set up for the mental barrel and then he lost it all underneath him,” says Jamie.
Was he hurt?
“Bruised ego,” reports Jamie.
In other news from JOB, his pal, Laird, whose performance in a recent vlog had fans calling it the “worst-ever” and “cringy”, has been pulled from future episodes.
“He’s sad about all the comments. They were pissed, dude. But they’re going to be happy. Poopies is back. They’re going to forget about Laird. He’s back, dude, he’s on.”