Oh Hawaii, the promised land!
Yes, the group of islands has built a reputation for their picturesque landscapes, world class waves, laid back vibes and traditional pride but for some, that’s only the norm.
By now, it’s certainly no secret that each year thousands of international go getters hit the shores in search of capturing the Aloha ambience, but as surfers, there’s only one real place we wish to explore. If you haven’t yet been, you’ve seen it countless times on your screens (or in mags if you’re old school). It’s Oahu’s famous North Shore.
A spot full of charismatic surfers pushing their boundaries looking to make a name for themselves, the seven mile stretch holds a special place in many people’s hearts, bringing a beatdown you’ll never forget and/or the wave you’ll one day tell the grandkids about.
One man all too familiar with the above and fortunate enough to call this paradise his own backyard is Jamie O’Brien. Whether it’s surfing his bright pink Catch Surf foamy at maxing Pipe, mastering the invention of new and crazy sports with his pals or simply cruising around with his other half, Mr O knows what it’s all about. Yeah many may say it, but it's abundantly clear Jamie truly LOVES Hawaii, and here’s his top 5 reasons why.
1. The Weather If sunshine, warmth, an occasional shower and more than a generous handful of mindblowing double rainbows are your cup of tea, go no further. Heck, throw a few epic sunsets in the mix and it’s no wonder JOB calls the North Shore home.
2. Hawaii has the best waves in the world.
Pipe, Sunset, Rocky Point, Off The Wall, the list is endless! For those only on the island for a fraction of its winter, you may have to battle the crowd factor a little more than most. But when you wake up everyday and the first thing you see is the lineup at Pipe and the rest are only a stones throw away, you’ll soon learn the ins and outs of where is working on what conditions. It’s safe to say this is one man who can justify the capabilities and qualities of the line ups and how good they really do get.
3. We've got the best poke in the world!
Ahhhhh poke. Love it like we do? Like pasta is to Italy and tacos are to Mexico, poke (pronounced poh-keh) is to Hawaii. It’s a traditional meal served mostly at family gatherings, parties, supermarket deli’s and a heap of go-to spots on the islands. If you're in the area, roll in to Jamie's favourite, Pupukea Grill.
4. Waimea Bay
Yes, that bay - host to some of the most iconic waves ridden in surfing's history. Small days offer crystal clear waters to jump off the rock and explore the sealife, and days with swell can deliver one of the funnest shorebreaks around. Jamie's favourite though, grabbing the shovels and allowing the river to meet the ocean causing the well renowned makeshift wave.
5. Keiki Shorebreak.
Infamous for countless laughs, flogging one senseless and providing enough sand in your hair to build an entirely new beach, it's no wonder the shores of Keiki made the cut. Whether on blow up flamingos, a few Catch Surf Womper's or a simple bodybash without the amenities, when this place is on, it’s on!