Big Wave Surfing at Pe’ahi: “The Potential for Performance is Limitless”

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Kai Lenny Peahi photo Erik Aeder
Kai Lenny shows what it means to redefine the sport of big wave surfing. Photo by: Erik Aeder/Red Bull Media
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See Kai Lenny, Billy Kemper, Ian Walsh, Paige Alms, Bianca Valenti and Keala Kennelly (to name a few) surf the massive swell from Pe’ahi in January 2020.

Pe’ahi Delivers Promise

Pe’ahi on Maui’s north shore is renowned as one of the few ‘holy grail’ big surf spots on the globe. Approximately three miles east of Pa’ia town, this forbidding underwater sea cliff churns out a dramatic style wave, all it’s own, when the swell direction is right. The wave size at Pe’ahi (a.k.a. “Jaws”) can exceed 60′ during the months of December to March and attracts a massively talented group of big wave riders, men and women, from around the world.

Read SUJ’s exclusive interview with Kai Lenny
after he won his first Big Wave event in 2017.
CLICK HERE

In this WSL video from late January 2020, Kai Lenny walks through a ‘strike mission’ at Jaws’ famed break. It is a rare treat to capture so many of stand up paddling’s former surf champions including Kai, Izzi Gomez and Annie Star as they transition from SUP surfing into big wave riding for the World Surf League. Check out this video, narrated in large part by Kai Lenny, and get a taste of the energy out there at Jaws.

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Evelyn O'Doherty, editor & publisher of the new Standup Journal 2.0 is a former school teacher gone rogue. She left her career as a teacher in order to spend more time near or on the water after learning to surf turned her life around (upsidedown?). She is a year-round surfer and paddler living on the eastern tip of Long Island in NY who is a certified SUP instructor, seasoned SUP racer and avid longboard surfer. Evelyn was hired as Online Editor to Standup Journal in 2016. Her passion for the project quickly led to her success and eventually taking over the mag herself in Oct. 2018. Today, as editor, publisher and chief bottle washer at Standup Journal, Evelyn keeps her toes wet writing, traveling, paddling, surfing, and learning to foil. You can find her most days paddling out on Gardiner's Bay or surfing Ditch Plains in Montauk, NY.