Big wave surfers open ‘The Eddie’

Dec. 6, 2013 | 0 Comments
Nainoa Thompson, left, with Myra Aikau and members of the Hokule'a voyaging crew. (Courtesy Quicksilver)

Nainoa Thompson, left, with Myra Aikau and members of the Hokule’a voyaging crew. (Courtesy Quicksilver)

BY JASON GENEGABUS / jason@staradvertiser.com

The world’s most talented big wave surfers returned to Waimea Beach on Thursday, Dec. 5, to commemorate the opening of this year’s holding period for The Quicksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau. The annual contest, which has only been held eight times and last took place in 2009, requires a minimum consistent wave height of 20 feet to take place.

The surfers were joined by members of Aikau’s family and members of his voyaging crew aboard the Hokule’a, the traditional Polynesian voyaging canoe that was en-route to Tahiti in 1978 when it capsized and Aikau died while trying to paddle back to Hawaii for help. Among those in attendance was Nainoa Thompson, the last person aboard the Hokule’a to speak to Aikau before he began his fateful journey.

“Every voyage we make is in the wake of Eddie Aikau’s greatness,” said Thompson, who now serves as master navigator of the Hokule’a.

Following a ceremony on land, this year’s invited surfers joined Thompson and the Hokule’a in the waters of Waimea Bay to form a surfer’s circle as the sun set over Oahu’s famed North Shore.

The Hokule'a joins a circle of Quiksilver In Memory of Eddie Aikau surfers in Waimea Bay on Thursday, Dec. 5. (Courtesy Quicksilver)

The Hokule’a joins a circle of Quiksilver In Memory of Eddie Aikau surfers in Waimea Bay on Thursday, Dec. 5. (Courtesy Quicksilver)

The Quicksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau

2013 Invitees

Clyde Aikau
Kala Alexander
Grant Baker
Carlos Burle
Tom Carroll
Kohl Christensen
Ross Clarke-Jones
Shane Dorian
Nathan Fletcher
John John Florence
Sunny Garcia
Aaron Gold
Mark Healey
Bruce Irons
Noah Johnson
Greg Long
Reef McIntosh
Garrett McNamara
Pete Mel
Ramon Navarro
Jamie O’Brien
Makua Rothman
Kelly Slater
Jamie Sterling
Takayuki Wakita
Ian Walsh
Dave Wassel

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