Friday, October 30, 2009

bloody awesome. beautiful. you got to be kidding me. yaaaaaaaa.

You know those waves that when you kick out of them you just have to yell something out of your lungs? Specially when you're completely alone and you're not conditioned by the presence of others?

If you know what I'm talking about, you know how rare they are.
Well, today I had four of those. And listed in the title of this post are the short sentences I yelled out of my lungs when kicking out of them...

What an amazing day it was.

- surfing from 6.45 to 9.45.
- work from 10 to 2.
- photos at Hookipa from 2.30 to 3.30.
- windsurfing from 4 to 6.

The eight yoga lessons I took in the last three weeks are doing miracles and even though I clearly feel a bit shattered after a day like today, I feel very strong indeed.
It's a really good time to be me...

Hookipa was a great show since many non Maui resident pros are in town.
Photo of the day goes to Browsinho with a sick taka off the lip (or whatever that is called). He landed this one perfectly.

Here's the others in strict chronological order.
Mark Angulo.

Robby Swift bailing out a goiter.



Upside down Swift.

When I told him about the rockstar contest, Browsinho excitedly accepted to enter:"I'm gonna win it", he said.
To all Hookipa sailors: you'll be stoked to be announced that you are officially in a windsurfing contest against Browsinho that you can actually win.

Francisco Porcella doing what he does best. (well, he's actually pretty good at getting barreled on a surfboard too)

Long time no see Jennifer Henderson at Hookipa. Sure she didn't forget how to sail it... nice legs, btw!



Jason Polakow.


9.45pm. Tomorrow, more waves. Sunday, even bigger. Life good. Very good. Goodnight.

PS. Both the NW and the Waimea buoys already had some readings of the new NW swell at around one foot. What's so exciting about it? It's the first time EVER that I read 25 seconds as the period...
Clearly those are just the small forerunners and the period will go down, but it's going to be a good one. Way more west of today's swell though. Today the direction was just right.

a little bit of more environment catastrophe and a little bit of boom height talk

More bad news for ocean lovers (and not). I saw this on Jeff's blog.

And this is the video that Windwiner linked in the comments:

Boom height.
Remember that sequence of me doing a couple of bottom and top turns and looking with the boom way too low in the shots right in the transition between the two? It's just two posts down.
I met Tormod and told him that I would have liked to check some sequences of the good guys to see if it happens to them too.
Didn't have to wait too long... he was nice enough to send me the link to some of the sequences he collected.
Let's have a look at:
- Keith Taboul
- Robby Naish 1

- Robby Naish 2
- Robby Naish 3

So, I was right. There is a moment in the transition between bottom and top turn in which the sailor is standing straight up (Robby's 1 and 3 in particular caught this moment perfectly) and has his arms bent so that the boom is quite close to the body. In this position, of course, the boom appears to be too low... but it's not.
In the bottom and top turns, as I said, in fact the sailor is coiled (sorry, using Kelly's words.. see below) like a cat and in the regular sailing the sailor is leaning upwind forming a triangle with mast, body and straight arms and so the boom is not upper belly high anymore, but between nipple and shoulder high as it should be.
Cool, I'll be happy to go back to exactly were I was putting my boom before Tormod took the sequence, because that one inch higher that I was trying didn't feel good at all.

Waves are up here in Maui and will be up for a while. The wind should be blowing today and the weekend, but right now (6am of Friday) it's calm and I'm going surfing. Let's see if I feel like trying a carving 360. Kelly Slater just explained me how... yeah, right.

Not too exciting weather maps in the next week in the north pacific. There will be a strong high pressure NW of Hawaii and that's a very bad (and unusual) place for it: north onshore winds will prevail and no major NW ground swells (there might be stormy N windswells though). Nice long lasting south swell around mid next week though. Could be worse... could be a lot worse!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

a message in the waves that we keep ignoring + new rockstar contest sponsor + couple of videos

A few years ago I saw the wonderful movie "Hawaii - Message in the waves".

That film changed my life. Since then, the amount of plastic bottles I personally introduced in the environment has been zero. For many years I've been using my refillable metal bottles and that's something that everyone should do.
Plastic bottles are only a part of the problem of course, since every plastic object will eventually deteriorate in small bits, but they're so easily replaceable! That's why I'm pissed off when I see people (I'm talking also to you guys) buying huge amounts of them.
Same as the plastic bags, of course. So easy to replace with a reusable non plastic bag, but no many give a shit.
What's the problem? Well, if you don't have the time to watch the trailers on the movie website, here's a few pics that should be clear enough.

Shocked? How's this one? Those could be the tops and bits of a water or soda plastic bottles that you drank a few years ago... and yes, that WAS a bird. A beautiful albatross to be precise.

"Why in the world those stupid birds eat the plastic bits?", I hear someone saying...
Ever heard about the pacific gyre?
This video should answer your question.

More info here.

So pleeeaaaase, don't introduce plastic in the environment that is not strictly necessary.
Halloween is coming up. Just the other day I say a stupid plastic fake battery operated candle to put into a pumpkin. Now, already the fact that one uses a pumpkin for purposes other than eating it when there's people in the world that has nothing to eat should make everyone feel guilty... am I so strange?
But inserting an extremely unnecessary and polluting object in it, is just too much for me.
Nothing wrong with celebrating, just do it in a responsible (for the environment) way please: don't buy NEW plastic for your costume!

Hookipa Rockstar Contest update
I'd like to welcome yet another sponsor for the Hookipa Rockstar Contest: Cafe Mambo in Paia is kind enough to offer $50 certificate with the motivation that anybody that ends up plastered on the rocks needs a Margarita on the rocks to celebrate. They are hosting a scary karaoke night for Halloween.

Looks like there's more sponsors than contestants so far... Elena entered the contest with a rock visit last week. The problem of this contest is that not many people are aware of it (believe it or not, not all Hookipa sailors follow this blog), so please help me spread the word.
I'm also thinking of putting the biggest price for the winner and the other prices as a lottery for all the other contestants. Your name will be in the lottery as many times as you've gone on the rocks, but in this way everyone will have the possibility of winning something. All you have to do is to leave a comment on this blog or on the contest facebook page to claim your rockstar point.

Couple of videos.
Last summer I shot a video for some visitors. It was flat and they were not pros, but I was able to pull out 17 minutes of footage. Kind of boring at times, but not if you're in it!!! I uploaded the last song (which is Funeral by The band of horses... and I totally copied it from Bruno Sillac's video!). Here it is.

summer video from giampaolo cammarota on Vimeo.

Oh, if you really got nothing to do, here's the whole 17 minutes!

I'm about to receive the new amazing High Definition GoPro cameras... so email me if you want a nice video of your windsurfing vacation in Maui!

One more vid. Cookie (who is a french guy called Aurelien, but americans can't pronounce it, so someone nicknamed him Cookie... just like my name and GP) put together a few wipeouts of last Thursday at Hoookipa.

Des windsurfers se sont font gentiment corriger par leur maitre. from windsurfing fever on Vimeo.

As I said already in fact, Hookipa last week was pretty fun with clean waves and veeery offshore winds. This week the offshore wind continues but the waves are pretty much gone.
Pat Caldwell is forecasting rough big waves out of the NW for Thursday (12 to 14 feet faces) and Saturday (14 to 18 feet faces). I personally think that those sizes are a bit overestimated. What I agree with him, unfortunately, is that right after that, at the beginning of next week, we'll have strong onshore winds with big rough windswell, kind of like Sylt conditions... that must be karma!

Anyway, it's still Hawaii, one of most beautiful places on Earth. Let's keep it as such, using as little plastic as possible. Thanks.

Hang on, one more. Blog reader Rafn sends another video of surfing in Iceland! Bloody hell, those guys are good. Respect!!!

Friday, October 23, 2009

What a fantastic Sunday! (part 2)

Did I say I'll post part 2 the day after I posted part 1?!?
Shoots, I must have been busy!

Anyway, as usual, I got so much stuff to post about and little time. So for now all you get is a slide show of a nice two turns sequence that Tormod took of me that day. The action is lame compared to the pros, but it gives an idea of how much fun it was...

Let's have a look at this photo now.

One of the many things I like about the Superfreak is that it has the widest PVC window in the market. Most wave sails (like the one in the background for example) don't have a proper clear window anymore. Manufacturers assume that you can see through the X-Ply just as well, but I find it distracting.
On the other hand, I hate monofilm windows (well, I hate monofilm!), because they scratch easily and they get cloudy pretty quickly (and they're noisy!).
So PVC is my favorite choice for a window: it doesn't scratch as easily and if it gets temporarily cloudy (like if you rinse the sail off with fresh water - what an overrated thing! - and don't let it dry), you can wash it with soap and it will come out as new. It also gives a softer feel to the whole sail and that, as you probably know, is what I like.

Thanks again to Tormod for the photos. Check his blog he has some great shots of Francisco Porcella. Hookipa in fact has been quite good every day this week, with waves and veeery offshore wind. Lots of big aerials, I feel like mentioning Camille Juban's ones too. Gun sails had a fotoshoot and he was just going off.
Allright, off to surfing.

Monday, October 19, 2009

what a fantastic Sunday! (part 1)

This island is magic.

I've lived here for almost 8 years now and I'm still impressed (almost shocked, actually) by its beauty and by the all it has to offer to the ocean lovers (and not).

As I wrote in the previous post, Sunday morning I didn't wake up early enough to go dawn patrol on the south shore. So I went to check Hookipa and found that even though already windy, there were head high peaks to be surfed and one guy out. Evidently the out of season south swell was big enough to be known by everyone (or everyone in Maui reads my blog...), so I guessed that everyone was on the south shore.
Michelle called for a report and we decided to paddle out, just to say:"hey, we surfed The Point with only another guy out". Actually she ended up having some good fun catching the very first waves on her brand new 6.0.
I cut my session short to save my energies for windsurfing and managed to take a pic of her. Good style, shoulders right above the board and no one else in sight!

That's the other guy. Not a bad wave to be caught without any competition at all!

At 11am I hit the water with 72l and 4.5 together with a couple of other early sailors. The first hour was super fun: I caught tons of waves before the usual crowd showed up and the wind got even stronger and gustier. I quit at 12.30 and ate my lunch with the appetite of a hungry wolf.
Two different people happened to take photos of me, but I'll publish those tomorrow.

While I received an afternoon invitation to a free Ukulele festival at the MACC, I followed the call for more ocean action and drove Makena side. As usual, the kids were challenging the impressive shore break. Some of them, very, very close to the rocks on the east end of the beach.

I love this shot. Pure fun and joy to play with your buddies. So cool! Click on it to appreciate better.

And now the surfing. These are some of the best surfing shots I've ever taken. The light was beautiful and the stiff offshore wind created a huge white spray that stood out in contrast with the black lava rocks in the background. The water color was unreal. But that's too many words, I'll let the photos speak...

Well, the photos make it look epic, but it was super crowded and the SSW direction often didn't allow to make the whole wave. So there was a massive number of people dropping in along the way and sometimes that created some hairy situations. The following clip shows a small set.

Occasionally the wave opened up better and if you were lucky no one would drop in. That's the case of the photo on the very top. That's Michelle again, "everyone's best surfing buddy" as Juan once defined her.
Here's a little cronicle that wave. It was the last one of a big set, so the face was a bit frotty, but most people had already gone for (or got washed by) the previous waves. She did a big drop, a sweet bottom turn, the awesome top turn that I caught in the picture, then she trimmed the board halfway on the face of wave, got completely barreled on the final section and even came out of it.
A perfect 10 from the italian judge. Very good job sistah!
"best first day on a board ever!", she commented in a Skype chat we just had... I believe that!

Around 5pm I decided to go to Little Beach. Met a couple of friends, surfed the left over there, drank a beer, watched a great sunset, admired the fire dancers and the stars.

As I said: fantastic.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

week recap + Hookipa Rockstar Contest sponsor updates

Been busy... doing what? Here you have it.

Thursday 15: absolutely epic, glassy waves most of the day. Unfortunately I had already committed to helping a carpenter that I hired for a small construction project at my new studio, so I had to work with him from 8am to 5pm. Probably the last time I worked all day like that was my last day of work at HP in Italy, circa end of January 2001.... omg, does that suck or what?
Reduce your needs, work less and play more you guys, that's all I have to say.

Friday 16: I had a day off and had to make up for the day before. Hence I surfed for 1.5h, took a yoga class for 1.5h, took a fat nap for 1.5h and then went sailing super fun waves with super light wind at Hookipa for 2.5h. Ah, much better now.

Saturday 17: I sailed Hookipa with more fun waist to head high waves and very light wind on the inside. Sunset surf on the south shore with the new south swell on the rise.

Sunday 18: didn't manage to wake up early enough for south shore down patrol, so I'm taking it easy... at this point it's gonna be crowded no matter what. But I know that already, so I won't care and I'll have fun anyway. Where and doing what? Somewhere beautiful and something fun. Plenty of both in Maui.

I don't like posts without photos, so I'll use the Alex files again.
The one on the top is Nico with a high jump. This one is 12yo Bernd with a backloop.

Mark Winslow did this nice SUP surfing video and I'm happy to publish it.

2 WAVES 2 DAYS 1 NW SWELL from Mark Winslow on Vimeo.

He makes the SUP Neptune paddles with an interesting shape. I never tried them and probably never will, since I'm living a very NON-SUP phase of my surfing... unless I end up winning the Hookipa rockstar contest, since he kindly offered one of his paddles as a price!

Another potential sponsor for the contest is Maui Fin Company which will add prices to the already existing mast extension from Hot Sails Maui.

So there's nice prices to be won out there, hurry up and go on the rocks you guys!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

lots of surfing these days in Maui

I actually managed to squeeze in a sweet light wind wave sailing sesh on Saturday. No regular water start (only the light wind technique) and a couple of uphauls... that's how light it was. But smooth, glassy waves. At the beginning my timing was a bit off (September has been windy..) but towards the end I did slightly better. Not as good as Pascal, Jake and Peter who are true light wind masters.

Other than that, it's all about surfing. I surfed Paia bay, Lanes, Middles, Kanaha always with the 6.10. Loving it.
Still glassy conditions for a few more days, then a short spell of trades during the weekend (together with the confirmed south swell) and then the north pacific will go again in El Nino mode, as the following weather map (6 days from today) clearly shows. Doesn't look like a good winter for windsurfers, but the surfers should be stoked. The trick is to be both, so you're always happy!
By the way, the low south of the islands should bring unusual SE winds and lots of rain mid next week.

A couple of shots from the Alex files. There's a few sailors that you can tell just by watching the amount and shape of spray they throw in the top turn. Luke Siver is one of them.

Polish blog reader Michal sent me the link to his gopro wipeout video. Nice one!

It's 6.15am, waves are calling!