Ready to watch a crew of madmen surf terrifying waves this weekend? The World Surf League Big Wave Tour has officially placed the 2017 Pe’ahi Challenge on Green Alert for this Friday, October 27th and/or Saturday, October 28th. The Jaws event is now in its third iteration, and according to Big-Wave Commissioner Mike Parsons, Maui’s famed big-wave break could be bombarded with waves the size of four-story houses in a few days.
“This swell looks really promising, so we've issued a Green Alert to run on Friday and/or Saturday," said Parsons in a WSL press release. "We have a long period swell coming from the northwest direction, which will provide us with surf in the 40-45 foot range. We will continue to monitor the conditions to determine which days we will run the contest. We could potentially see heats on both Friday and Saturday or just one of the two days. We are excited to get the first event of the winter season underway and witness the world's best big wave surfers take on Pe'ahi for the third year in a row."
According to Surfline forecasters, “former Super Typhoon Lan is transitioning to an extratropical storm in the northwest Pacific today and is expected to expand and crank out 45-50 foot seas in the next 24 hours, 2000-2500 miles from Hawaii. As a result, we'll see a powerful, long period northwest swell build into Peahi throughout the day on Friday with an expected peak overnight before trending down during the first half of Saturday.”
With back-to-back historic events in 2015 and 2016, this year’s contest will have a lot to live up to. Maui’s Billy Kemper–who’s dominated the men’s field and has won the last two events–will be chasing another Pe’ahi Challenge title alongside seasoned chargers like Makuakai Rothman, Mark Healey, and Kai Lenny, winner of the Puerto Escondido Challenge earlier this year and current No.1 on the BWWT leaderboard. On the women’s side, Maui’s Paige Alms will compete against big-wave standouts Keala Kennelly, Bianca Valenti, and others for her second consecutive win.
To watch the gladiator-like event in real-time, visit worldsurfleague.com, and check out the list of invitees and alternates below.
2017/18 BWT Men’s Pe’ahi Challenge:
Invitees: Grant Baker, Pedro Calado, Greg Long, Jamie Mitchell, Billy Kemper, Nic Lamb, Will Skudin, João De Macedo, Cristian Merello, Kai Lenny, Makuakai Rothman, Lucas Chianca, Francisco Porcella, Trevor Sven Carlson, Tom Lowe, Shane Dorian, Ian Walsh, Albee Layer, Mark Healey, Aaron Gold, Tyler Larronde, Nathan Florence, Koa Rothman, Ryan Hipwood
Alternates: Shaun Walsh, Danilo Couto, Torrey Meister, Peter Mel, Alex Botelho
2017/18 BWT Women’s Pe’ahi Challenge:
Invitees: Paige Alms, Justine Dupont, Andrea Moeller, Keala Kennelly, Felicity Palmateer, Bianca Valenti
Alternates: Emily Erickson, Nicole Pacelli, Laura Enever