I was fortunate to be out in Maui last month to watch WWWC Club member, Alex Mckirgan, 15 years old take his first windsurf session at Hookipa, Maui, Hawaii.
Alex who started with the X-train Rippers – West Wittering as a 5 year old has been windsurfing with his Dad Frank, Mum Sandra and sister Georgia since then. It has been a long journey as a kid getting through the usual barriers that windsurfing has to offer – planing, carve gybing, water starting, carrying big kit to the water and the first jump, the usual frustration of lack of wind, and then having to pick your game up to sail the outside waves in deep water where you imagine the worst is going to happen.
I have been with Alex through most of this and I have to say it was a great day to see him and his coach Matt Pritchard make the decision to go to Hookipa.
Myself and Holly drove down to Hookipa to join Alex after we watched Robbie Naish pulling some big moves whilst doing the 2014 Naish kit photo shoot just outside the house in Camp One.
Alex by the time we got there was already getting into some Hookipa action with Matt who showed why he certainly is one of the best windsurf coaches in the world – when he blocked waves for Alex to ride – keeping other riders off his wave – and selected the good wave sections and exits through the channel.
I have to say it was quite emotional watching Alex who took some good sets, nearly got nailed by a few, then picked up his confidence and started to tear into a some set waves. Hookipa even on small head high with logo high sets has a hefty rip with a small launching and landing zone – shit hot locals (that’s the girls!) plus some of the top pros in the world tearing it up. It has a big reputation as the No1 windsurf wave location in the world.
Anyway, after watching for a while, I left Holly with the camera and thought I ought to get out there and enjoy the surf – came back the following day for another session and started to understand how Hookipa works. We were even greeted with topless yoga models “on the rocks” – seemed like a perfect day!
Have added a couple of pics of the previous days Camp One “Warm Up” and Hookipa session when it was so big only 5 to 6 riders were out ……
If you are planning a trip to Maui and would like to get some lessons try Matt Prichard or Shawna Cropas at Aloha clinics – get a guide to take you to Hookipa, otherwise it could be an expensive trip on the rock pile…
Watch this space – lots more Maui info coming up – 2014 kit & more pics …. ..