Saturday, August 14—
Arrived about 11:30am with all equipment and luggage intact. Cost $200 extra for 2 boards, 4 sails, 4 masts and 2 booms on American Airlines. Picked up the rental van and dropped stuff off at the house before arriving at Kanaha about 215pm. We rigged 6.0/5.2 and sailed an hour in light but sailable conditions. Had boom issues, since I forgot to replace some pieces on my Fiberspar boom, but was able to replace the parts that evening and solve the problem. Luckily I brought the replacement parts with me and got some help from Neil Pryde Maui. Thanks, Gus. Dinner at Milagos and early to bed. Staying at a little cottage/ohana unit just east of Sprecks and west of Baby Beach and right on the water. Great view and windy!!
Sunday, August 15th—
Went to the grocery store and Costco to stock up on supplies and still made it to the beach before 11:30. Rigged 5.2/4.6 and had a near perfect day sailing. Our favorite spot is off Camp One in front of “the wall”. It is 3-4 hard tacks upwind and the reef is just the best place to sail w/ smooth water, ramps and jumps, some waves and crystal clear water. It is a fish bowl with turtles on most every run. The morning session is the best as it is uncrowded with the smoothest water and we try to hit it early every day. Perfect 5.2 for me with some fun jumps and turns. Shawn was on her 4.6 and hitting every ramp she could and landing most of the jumps. The second session was just as fun but we stayed at lower Kanaha to sail with friends.
Monday, August 16th—
Same routine, get to Kanaha about 11am and rigged 5.2/4.6 but today was amped up a notch compared to yesterday. Back up to the wall for a more active session today and a bit of a workout. The wind jumped up for the second session and I was back in 15 minutes to steal Shawn’s 4.6 since she was already rigging her favorite sail, the 4.2. Back out for another hour of high octane bump sailing to punish our already sore bodies. Dinner and early to bed as we just beat the shit out of ourselves today…fun but a punishing workout.
Tuesday, August 17th—
Trip to Haiku to order a new fin and got to the beach by 11am. Rigged the 5.2/4.6 and again and off to the wall. The wind had a bit more east in it today so we were sailing dead into the ramps for some big air. Unfortunately, we were flying on apparent wind so no support once we left the water leading to some high jumps and tough landings/bail outs. The outside turns were smooth so the session was fun so we were up there almost 90 minutes. The afternoon session at lowers was just as fun. The wind was steady with the windline just about 50 yards off the beach. Shawn worked on her duck jibes and I just could not help playing in the blue water offshore. The wind was steady and the water really smooth with rolling swells. You could find the smooth slots between the swells and just fly for as long as you were willing then crank on the turn at speed in the swells. Again, near perfection for sailing. 5.2 Revo wave sail, Mark Nelson custom bump board and a Techtonics 26cm Tomahawk. Don’t think, just sail.
Wednesday, August 18th—
Wind ramped down a little so we rigged 6.0/5.2 for the day. It was the kind of day that most locals just stay on the beach or rig too small and slog, only to come up and ask what I have rigged. When you say “6 meter” they look at you funny. It was actually a nice break and chance to relax sailing instead of the usual Kanaha chop/ workout.
Thursday, August 19th—
The wind is back. Rigged 4.6/4.2 and didn’t know what we were going to see. Early session was nicely powered but it backed off by 12:30p. The wind kept switching NNE to ENE which chopped up the water and made for short runs. I got really frustrated just trying to sail as the runs got shorter and shorter if you wanted 4.6 wind. Finally, abut 3p it stabilized for a final fun session. Dinner with friends meant a trip to the liquor store for wine.
Friday, August 20th—
I got to see Mark Nelson shape my new bump board this morning on his milling machine. Interesting…once the parameters are programmed in the computer and the blank is aligned on the table, it takes only about 10 minutes a side to shape the board. Won’t be able to sail it here or take it home as it takes another 2 weeks or so to turn it from foam to a real board. At Kanaha, we rigged 4.6/4.2 for and got the shifting winds from the day before, although a bit more power. The 3p shift today saw it go from windy to WINDY. A squal line was offshore driving the wind. Shawn did two short sessions before declaring it just too windy. Instead of using her 4.2, I just called it a day to nurse a very shore shoulder. Needed the Advil and alcohol to make the ache go away on a shoulder that really needs surgery. End of week one and on to week two.
Saturday, August 21st—
Kay and Greg Monteleon arrived so we now have somebody to sail with. Morning session was a near perfect 5.2/4.6 and we headed for the wall to enjoy the smooth water. A little north in the wind make the first few tacks very difficult but after clearing the swimming area, the wind filled in and it was two long tacks to the reef. Nobody else was up there early so we had the playground to ourselves with smooth water and a great wind angle to hit some ramps. Shawn got the award for the day with a vertical jump but failed to stick the landing. The morning session was an hour and forty minutes before we headed back for some water and lunch. Afternoon session was a bit different as the wind turned more easterly and picked up velocity. We went out on the morning gear but should have been a half to full meter smaller. The directional change meant voodoo chop everywhere except the far outside blue water so it was a full body workout.
The good intentions of keeping the daily journal was swept away by just being on Maui. Every morning we woke up to wind and the sound of the waves on the rocks at our little cottage on the beach in Specks. We were just west of Baldwin Beach and right at Baby Beach so every morning we did a 30 minute walk the length of Baldwin Beach , either before or after breakfast, and observe the locals walking their dogs, exercising or gathering seaweed for some unknown purpose. Afterwards we would read and fix a lunch and head to Kanaha around 11am. The early sessions ended up being the best most days so we tried to get their early. The second week was just about the same every day. I rigged a 4.6 and Shawn a 4.2. The wind was either perfect, or had too much North or East. More often, about 1pm, the wind would switch 20-30 degrees every so often and provide the famous Kanaha chop that just makes work out of fun. The best day was Wednesday, 9/25, when the wind had more North in it early and my session at the wall put me at a better angle to the swell. That day you could launch jumps at the perfect angle between the wind and swell and just float the landings. I had my single best jump in years with perfect power and angle such I could actually land the thing and sail away. The perfect Wednesday was followed by the Beast from the East Thursday where the wind angle put you directly into the swell and chop meaning it was a brutal session…but still fun. “That which don’t kill you, makes you stronger”.
The last day was a memorable experience. It started out normal so we, again, rigged 4.6/4.2 expecting just another day. I made it most of the way to the wall, about Upper Kanaha and the wind backed off and I swam for 10 minutes. Got a puff and downwinded back to the beach and waited for the wind to return. A squall came through which brought back the wind so we sailed in the rain, stinging rain , for 15 minutes (on the 4.6) before the squall passed and it just shut down to zero wind leaving windsurfers and kiters swimming. We waited and it started to come back after about 45 minutes so I rigged a 5.2 and gave that a try. Not enough so I rigged the 6.0 Retro, put the 28cm fin on and was able to plane when nobody was moving. The wind gradually built until the 6.0 was too much but by then we had to start breaking down the equipment to pack and go home. We rigged and sailed everything we brought on the last day but we had to dry it out and clean it up before we packed anyway, so no problem.
I bookended the trip by starting and ending with a 6.0m but spent most of the two weeks on a 4.6m. Shawn worked on her duck jibes and tacks and was nailing both at the end of the two weeks. The cottage we rented was great and we decided that while we really liked Hood River the last two years, we missed Maui and all our friends we have made over the years. We will be going back next year.
We shipped 2 boards, 4 sails, 4 masts and two booms and paid $200 to get them to Maui and $100 to get them home. You can’t rent for two people for two weeks for that price and we got to sail our own stuff so it was worth the hassle.