north shore big wave watching

April 1st – Pipeline, North Shore, Oahu, Hawaii

Okay, I know I’m waaaaaay behind on posting about this – but it was such a fun day, I figured that to post it late was better than never, right?  Besides… part of the luxury of a personal blog: no deadlines!  I am my own editor.

Carly, my Hawaiian partner-in-crime, and I have been on a mission to see more of the island, be tourists, take it all in, experience as much as we can, and make every day that our husbands are deployed go by faster.   I mean, what better way to pass a deployment than exploring and playing on one of the most beautiful islands on this earth, right?   So here’s a story about another one of our fun Hawaiian days!

Big Wave Watching on the North Shore

The night of March 31st I was about to go to bed, when I saw a friend throw some pics up on FB of the hugest waves ever.  The album was all fun beach pics from the north shore that had been taken that day.  So I text my friend and find out that a late season swell was upon us, and the North Shore was getting unseasonably big waves.  (Typically in Hawaii, winter = big waves, so having 20+ feet waves in later March/early April was just weird and awesome and crazy!).   So I wake up Carly and inform her about these crazy waves coming in, and we decide that we MUST take advantage of this and get on up there.   Every time we tried to catch big set on the North Shore, we’d get there and it would be a bust; we kept going on small, blown out days.  And when I thought about it – I may never get the chance to do this again in my life (oh I hope I do, but another winter in Hawaii isn’t in the Duggan Family game plan as of now).

So, we went set our alarms for early and set off to see some big waves!

To Pipeline we go!

I picked up Carly and we had a nice early morning drive on up.  The drive from the Windward side on up to the Pipeline/Sunset Beach area is soooo beautiful.  I can’t get over how lucky we are to live here!

i'm a good driver, i swears

the view along the H-2

the colors out here are so vivid!

pretty carlita and silly me!

the pine trees on the north side of the aina make it look like the mainland, or at least a totally different place than the rest of oah'u. it really does feel like you're going up north!

After a lot of singing along to Metric (one of me and carly’s faves), and me talking Carly’s face off (I tend to do that) – we got to Pipeline! Can I just say that after hearing about a place like Pipeline my whole when I lived in Florida, it’s so surreal and crazy to get to go there and hang out.   I’m at PIPELINE!!  That’s sooo cool!

Carly, I think she's giving me a sassy face of some sort - but she's about to scope out a place for us to plant ourselves and hang out.

oh hay! i'm at the beach too!

Yeah, we’re real subtle here.  So.  We’ve arrived at Pipeline, there’s a pro-am contest going on for bodyboarding (boogie boarding) and surfing.  So we’re at one of the coolest, most serious surfing beaches in the world, on a day there’s a contest and unseasonably big waves, and we’ve shown up with cheesy grocery store boogie boards, and i’m dressed like a wacky fool (as per usual).  We’re playing it real cool at this point.

Volcom house - isn't this sooo cool? That's the Volcom house!! Ahhh!

close up!

So there was a contest going on.  We got there during the boogie boarding part of it.  It was ladies’ boogie boarding!  It wasn’t really that crazy fun to watch.  But then a few minutes after we had settled in, they announced that the shortboard heats were up next.  Yay!  We were so stoked to get to watch some rad lady surfers!

the announcer booth for the contest

one of the competitors heading out into the water

a surfer all stretching out before her heat

the posters for the day's contests

The contest we stumbled upon was the Science Hawaii Women’s Pipeline Pro.  The winner of the shortboard division, Tatiana Weston-Webb, was amazing.  She was just killin it, and watching her was so fun.  I was mesmerized by watching all of the women surf, it was just so fun and awesome.  It made me want to grab a board and paddle out… Well, it made me want to find a quiet beach with not-scary waves and paddle out there.

Here’s a page I found about the Science contest, and there’s some video. ooh! fancy!

Weird Vog and Rain

So the weather wasn’t exactly perfect, and it kept lightly raining on us!  It’s no big deal… it was just so funny.  It would be blazing hot and sunny, then some rain clouds would roll in right quick, and it would be dark and chilly, and wet.  It was also really voggy that day, and it made everything kind of blah and icky.  No me gusta vog, it’s yuck!  (In case you haven’t been dillegnetly following my blog AND you’re unfamiliar with Hawaii – I’ll fill you in: vog = the weird volcanic fog that rolls into our local atmosphere from the Big Island.  Vog is yucky.  It makes people cough and it makes the sky look poisonous).

carly hiding from the rain!

rain, rain, go away!

yeah, we're THIS cool.

 Okay, okay… The Waves! 

Finally, I’ll show y’all some wave photos.  Mind you, my whole blog is based on low-quality cell phone snap shots – so please don’t expect anything better or fancier than that from me.  Thanks!

The waves were pretty big – bigger than I’ve really seen in person probably.  But, it’s really hard to photograph them from the beach, on a cell phone camera, in a manner that gives them justice.  And a lot of the sets were average, and then every now and then a big ole set would just come in.   So yeah, enjoy:

Shark’s Cove Grill

So we decided to head down the road a lil bit and look for food.  We saw Shark’s Cove Grill, and checked it out on the ole “Urban Spoon.”  (Urban Spoon is an iphone app that uses your GPS to find places to eat near you, and has a community of users that rate and review places to eat.  The reviews tend to be very reliable!).   Urban Spoon told us the Shark’s Cove Grill was affordable and tasty… and that Urban Spoon don’t lie!

We had an insanely good meal there.  We were both talking about how we can’t wait till our husbands get home so we can take them there.  It was awesome food!

shark's cove grill = amazing

lots of chicks hang out there.

aww, meow! kitteh cat!!

Here’s there website, they have some awesome pics on here:

I got some ahi skewers, it was served on rice and black beans.  And what is SO WEIRD is that Carly and I were talking about food on the beach as we were starting to get hungry, and I was whining about not having access to any Chipotle out here (no, there aren’t any Chipotle restaurants in Hawaii, gah!).   So I was saying that I just wanted some protein with some rice and beans and veggies.   When I got my plate at lunch I was just sitting there all mesmerized, thinking ask, and you shall receive! 

oh yum. i can't wait to go back!!

yeah. amazing.

Shark’s Cove

While we were enjoying our lunch, we were staring out Shark’s Cove the entire time.  It’s right across the street.  (Well, I would actually say that the aptly named Shark’s Cove Grill is across the street from Shark’s Cove).

The water was just calling our names.  So we decided to go for a little post-lunch swim.   No, we did not wait thirty minutes.  We’re totally living on the edge and we know it.

carly heading down to the water

Shark’s Cove totally looks beautiful, right?  We aren’t the only ones who think so: the place is cramjammed with tourists, tons of people bedecked in snorkel gear.  There must be some pretty stuff in the water, right?

Carly and I have traveled sans snorkel equipment on this particular day.  Or Aqua Socks.  (do Aqua Socks even exist anymore?).  It turns out, we are poorly prepared for the next segment of our day.  In fact, our time at Shark’s Cove was borderline miserable.

Those rocks are sharp, and never ending!  All we wanted to do was cool off in some refreshing water.  But in order to do this seemingly simple task, we had to pick our way across a bevy of terrifyingly sharp and slippery rocks.  That’s how rocks get you: sharp AND slippery.  So to make our way out to water deep enough to swim in, we undertook this awkard, slow trek of CAREFULLY walking from rock to rock, trying  to find smooth enough footing so not to fall on all the sharp ouchy points, or cut our feet.  It was time consuming and just… not fun.  haha!  oops!

In the next couple days after our time at Shark’s Cove, Carly and I kept finding small cuts on ourselves from those durn rocks.

Anyways, we finally made it out to the pool part of the cove, and we did have a very lovely swim.  It was super refreshing and cool, and it was a very pretty place to swim.

oh hay, step on me!

Dole Whip!

Finally, it was time to head home.  I really had a hankering for shave ice… but we didn’t want to stop in Haleiwa and wait in the huge lines.  Then I remembered, I’ve never had a Dole Whip – and Carly had promised me that we could go to Dole soon.

dole plantation

If I thought Shark’s Cove was chock full of tourists, I hadn’t seen nothin’ yet!  The Dole Plantation had bus and after bus of people getting dumped off there.

Like any super tourist center, they have getting a lot of people in and out in a reasonable time down to a science.  The lines for getting treats move really fast, and we were actually in and out in maybe ten minutes.

so hard to decide!

whatcha gonna get, carly?

a pineapple flavr dole whip

And for all my Family Guy-loving friends… yeah, we kept pronouncing the whip part in a way that would make Stewey proud.  Whhhhip. 

Oh what a fun day I had with my pal Carly seeing more of the island, being tourists, and keeping ourselves busy.   We’re trying to stay busy and make the time our husbands are deployed go by faster – and what a way to do that!!  Everyday my appreciation for how amazing and beautiful this island is, grows.   And my appreciation for my good friend grows as well!

I just feel so super blessed to have the life that I do, and I hope that I’m maxing out on it and making the best of my circumstance.


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