Saturday, June 11, 2011

Not according to plan

        Well Nick and I headed to Oahu this weekend to photograph waves. The plan was to photograph waves at Sandy beach this weekend while the sun would be perfectly positioned down the barrel of the wave. Well things didn't go according to plan. First of all as seen in the photo above we were given the ultimate tourist mobile (a red pt cruiser look a like). It was a Chevy HHR. In all fairness to Chevy it was a very comfortable car and it drove fantastic. It just was not the car that you want to blend in on the Waianae coast (The most local community in the islands with a well deserved reputation for being rough for new comers to the islands.) I was raised on the Waianae coast and graduated from Waianae High so I knew better but couldn't resist posing with lei's on by our tourist mobile in the heart of Waianae. The photo above was taken at the dead end of the road in Waianae at one of my favorite beaches (Yokes). I love the high surf sign in the background and my handicap placard in the window, but the cheap ABC Store lei's that we went out of our way to get made the photo. The photo below was taken very quickly with Waianae Store in the background.  I had to do these two photos for my friends in Waianae who will get a laugh out of the car Nick and I were driving out there.

       Day one we headed out two photograph with to friends from Oahu, Jon and Kimo.  We got up early and headed to Sandy beach.  We pulled up to a massive thunder storm. The lightning was amazing.  Nick and I were looking for a break in the rain so we could shoot lighting through the barrel. With no break in the rain there was no way to keep the ports clear on our cameras so that plan was shot.  So we called Kimo and Jon and headed to the only place on the island that was not blanketed in rain, Waianae. It was a good call as Yokes was beautiful. Waves were right on the beach so it was fun to roll around in the shore break with friends.

         You can see Jon down the barrel of this wave and Kimo entering the surf in the photo after. Kimo had to leave the break early. While jumping through a wave it pushed his water housing back into his head and split it open a bit. So he got out to apply direct pressure to stop the bleeding. Later we headed to the drug store and got supplies. I had to patch Kimo up on the tailgate of his truck. This definitely was not according to plan. But before that we got these great shots at Yokes.

       After Yokes Nick took off on his own while I went to help my friend Jennie look for a car. He spent the day on the north shore and got this amazing image below at Keki beach.

       The next day the surf was bigger as a south west swell hit simultaneously with a small north swell. We went to over 10 beaches looking for a place to shoot. The plan was still Sandies but the sky was still black and gloomy after the previous days thunder storms. We got in for a few minutes but the conditions were terrible. So we left and checked a few breaks on the south and east shore then headed over to the north shore, and finally after an extended surf check we arrived at Pounders. Conditions were nice other then all the sticks and debris in the water that had come down stream after the thunder storms. These are a few of the shot from the day.

          On our last day we decided to scratch Sandies and head straight for Pounders at sunrise. We got up early and rushed to the north shore with hopes of conditions like the day before and sunrise colors. Once again things did not go according to plan. We pulled up to Pounders to find the winds blowing a gale directly on shore. So Pounders was a no go. We quickly headed back to Waimea bay to get in before the crowds. The back wash was making for some interesting images I just wish there was more color in the sky.

        As the sun finally came over the mountains both Nick and I got some great images just before the crowds of people arrived. I got the one I was trying for with the Waimea church and Nick was just purely on his A game getting many great images in the short time we were in the water.

          Finally we headed back to Waianae for one last chance in the water. Yokes was huge and crashing right on the reef and the sand was closed out. We would have needed fins, which was not an option with my ankle yet. So we backtracked to Makaha Beach Cabanas. A beach that I used to hang at as a kid. The outside was closed out clear across the bay and the inside would wall up steep but every once and a while one would curl nice. It was here that we encountered Scuba Steve. He was determined to get out even after we warned him.

       I let him know on many of his attempts that the surf was big and it wasn't a good idea for him to go out. But my warnings were ignored and he kept trying. Finally I told him the yellow fins might help in locating his body later. Still he didn't get the hint.

       Every time there was a break in the surf, He went for it! Later we saw him on the beach after he lost his fins and got a little scraped up on his legs. I was glad that he made it out safe as it could have been far worse. When the sets came in they were tossing Nick and I like rag dolls.  Scuba Steve was safe, we returned our awesome rental car, and even though nothing went according to plan we got some amazing images.

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