HAWAIIAN HOLIDAYS WITH JAY BUTTON

DAY 1

The call of the islands has penetrated every serious wave rider with fantasies and nightmares for decades. It was time to bring the dream alive. Hawaii is a sacred place energised by the constant flow of the earths bubbling DNA announcing itself everywhere the eye can see. It is literally a melting pot of life and to witness this phenomenon first hand is incredible to say the least. It is currently 2:00am, the rain on our roof sounds like a lullaby and as Catie sleeps next to me I can see she is dreaming in a state of bliss.

A five-acre eco-farm perched 500 metres above sea level is our current residence. There is an abundance of edible flora accented by a lush barrier of trees surrounding the place. Fair to say we feel very content in our surroundings.

 

 

DAY 2

Zooming across the belt road that cuts through the island we reach 3000 feet above sea level humming along the coast to Waipio Valley. After forty-five minutes of solid hiking from the main road we are in an untouched paradise. Pine trees stand at attention along the shore like green sentinels guarding the river mouth at its centre. Beyond the shoreline the black sand gives way to the blue ocean and a fresh groundswell. 4-6 foot lefthanders are pounding the shore with almost no one in sight. Pausing momentarily we watched the locals snag a couple of waves before pursuing our ascent towards civilisation. As expected the sky was an impressionist masterpiece full of red and orange as the sun melted away.

 

DAY 3

Go time, the gang has arrived and all cylinders are firing. Upgrading the minivan for a more suitable 2500 Dodge Ram 4×4 we had all the ingredients for an epic surf mission. Jarra introduced us to one of his local friends, CJ Kahuna, a man possessing energy and aloha spirit to no end. Gifting us some local knowledge to carry us through the week he then chaperoned us to a very fun A-frame reef break for a few head dips.

Day 4

Jeff, the local spearing legend, had Jarra up at 4:00am southbound on the hunt for glory beneath the waves. No jackpot today but we appeared a few hours later to scoop up some lifestyle, landscape and atmospheric shots in the water and the adjacent cliffs. The scene was reminiscent of the South Australian coastline in many ways. After wrapping up we set a course for the lava fields on the southeast end of the island.

A short stroll became a 3-mile walk and by the time we made it to the actual lava it was too dark to get any photo’s that would adequately capture the scene so instead we soaked up the majestic sight for our own pleasure.

DAY 5

The swell was up and so were we. We linked up with the previously mentioned CJ Kahuna – a 6’4 wave master who Jarra met in his earlier years in the United States. Kahuna’s family is one of the oldest bloodlines and his lineage runs all the way back to the early tribes of the Islands. To have someone of such stature showing you the ropes is a very special thing, to get a truly authentic experience is humbling. The food, the culture, the waves and especially the people are what make a place special and we had the pleasure of all of these elements.

Throughout my travels there is a constant theme that emerges with the locals I come into contact with and that is one of community, heritage and family. Kahuna was very well versed in his family history as well as that of the islands and it sparked something within me, a desire to know more of my own history. My roots are somewhat opaque and has been an untouched subject for my family as my great grandfather concealed his aboriginal heritage in order to have a better chance at supporting his family. Having these experiences has definitely stoked the fire to find out more about my family tree and become more educated on the events surrounding it so I can pass on the stories to the next generation.

The Hawaiian spirit is full of strength, passion and warmth and I always felt welcome in this land of plenty. Looking for waves we found them, on the hunt for dinner we scored, everything just seemed to come together. Hawaii is such a diverse land with so much to offer I know I will most certainly be back.

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