Coconut Wireless: October 14, 2005 – First Swell of Season Rocks Sunset Beach

Derrick Doerner pulled out his Dick Brewer balsa gun, as did 35+ other big wave riders that dawn patrolled Sunset Beach on opening day Oct. 13, 2005. The lifeguards had there hands full, even with Pipe still shaking off the sand. Sunset was pumping and a few lifeguards showed up early, before they are getting paid, to make sure nobody payed the ultimate price on opening day. Six guns snapped by 9AM, “Big Wave Bryan” sent to the beach, limping his huge yellow gun back to his rusted pick-up, pausing for the tourist to get the shot. Kenny Bradshaw rode this thick, monster board and
glided were others struggled. Flynn Novak, Ezra Sitt, and that crew watched for an hour, asking “Double D” and the other stalwarts about the conditions, before charging the first real swell to grace the rocks this season.

Plenty of swell in the islands lately and the City and County of Honolulu lifeguards have been busy: they had 250 assists and rescues during the last two south swells alone. So the lifeguards have asked the beach boys renting surfboards to refrain from doing so during high-surf-advisory and high-surf-warning conditions. Some heavy "anything for 20 bucks" claims were presented on the local television news by one lifeguard; the beach boys countered with the standard “safety first” claims. This will go to the legislature and laws will be passed.

The Hawaiian Island chain is finally drying out after some serious weather related to the passing hurricanes and/or their remnants. Big Island got the most swell from Hurricane Jova, but some spots on Oahu's northeast corner got good Sept. 22, during the late afternoon and all day Sept. 23. Pounders and Kahana Bay got fun. Mason Ho and crew ripped Pounders. They would catch the little backwash wave and link directly into some sick sandbar dredgers. Meanwhile, long point-style rights wrapped in at Crouching Lion … lights winds in the late afternoons was the call. But be careful, some active lightning and thunder on the afternoon of Sept. 23 kept surfers on their toes. A bolt hit Thomas Gambino's coconut palm and it exploded into flames. The Honolulu Fire Department put the tree out and the Honolulu City & County says it is actually on their property, so an arborist was sent to assess the damage. Also, heavy runoff from the flash flooding recently is making for some nasty water conditions, especially at Ala Moana Bowls, where a large tree stump was seen floating past the lineup around lunch time on Oct. 6, 2005.

All trails, campsites, cabins and many other public recreation areas that closed on the Big Island due to the weather are now reopened. Two helicopters doing tours crashed on Kauai's north shore late September near Hanalei Bay. Both copters held six people and were from Heli USA, Inc. Two died.

The Waimea Bay jump rock has claimed a life. John "Jersey" Greengrove, 17, was struck by another jumper several weeks ago and received severe head injuries that put him in a coma until his untimely death on Sept. 22, 2005. The Haleiwa Puntu Crew will miss Jersey and they hope to create a memorial in honor of his fun-loving spirit.

Construction, er, reconstruction, on the famous Anahulu Bridge in downtown Haleiwa is moving right along without major delays or harm to motorists — good job. The contractor even put up surfboard signs with their name on it … That’s the spirit! The Rainbow Bridge is getting a complete face-lift and will be done in October, if all goes according to plan.

Meanwhile, up the coast, construction of the 17 new parking stalls at Ehukai Beach Park seems to have stalled. The first surf event of the winter season is the 29th Annual North Shore Menehune Surfing Championships, October 8-9. The event was started by the late, great Rell Sunn and her friends; this event is the launching pad for many top surfers, like Derek Ho, Liam and Garrett McNamara, Jamie O’Brien, Pancho Sullivan, Kalani Robb, Ross Williams, Rusty K. and current Number 6 on the WCT, Fred Patacchia. photogs will be on it, so look for galleries at the end of each day! Entry forms at all Haleiwa surf shops. Event happens in solid surf at Alii Beach Park. Contact Skill Johnson to help sponsor this important event.

October 9-16 is the waiting period for the Red Bull King of the Air event at Hookipa, Maui. Back on Oahu, there's the Oct. 15-16 HASA Event Number 3 at Diamond Head. Oct. 21-23, the China Uemura Longboard PRO-AM at Makaha is gonna be a winner. The Xcel Pro at Sunset is Oct. 2- Nov. 10 … plenty of waiting period for this very important event. HASA Event Number 4 at Ma’ili Point on da Westside should have some good surf, and then November 12-24 the WCT Men and Women invade Alii Beach for the Vans Hawaiian and Roxy Pros.