For about a week the best big wave surfers have been tracking a Tahiti swell that took quickly the name of Code Purple, being a deeper shade than the iconic Code Red swell of 2011. The swell was predicted to be around 20 feet, with light winds and to hold for a few days.
Queue a lot of surfers squashing their very large testicles into small airplane seats and heading to the End of Road. Just some of the surfers who flew into to join the local Tahitian chargers included Shane Dorian, Sancho, Alex Gray, Mark Mathews, Ryan Hipwood, Dean Morrison, Laurie Towner, Wade Goodall, Dean Bowen, Mikey Wright, Kamalei Alexander, Mark Healey, Makua Rothman, Koa Rothman, Nathan Florence, Dave Wassel, Eli Olson, Laird Hamilton, Nathan Fletcher, Garrett McNamara and Kohl Christensen, to name a few.
It was sort of like a parallel universe to the Billabong Rio Pro, with around 32 of the best big wave surfers on the planet converging on a small island, except in this case, their is no rankings or prizemoney and they get judged by their peers and their instagram hits.
And yesterday, May 13, the swell and this elite pack didn’t disappoint. Filmer Tim Bonython said, “Today was another crazy day in surfing history. It started off clean and 6 to 8 foot. Then during the morning there was the odd moments where you could feel the ocean grow. By lunch time there was two or three tow teams, then the serious shit began. If you wanna ask me how big it was? – lets say it was around 10 to 20 feet!!!”
By the evening the internet was awash with images and videos of the days heroics. It seems Raimana scored an absolute bomb (see Dorian’s post)
while Laird Hamilton towed young Hawaiian Koa Smith into the wave of the day (see the insta shots below).
But many, many more were ridden, and ones like this one below by Kealli Mammala was just one epic wave in a day of epic waves.
The swell is expected to be as big, if not bigger, tomorrow, and with plenty of surfers still yet to get their fill, it’s shaping up to be another historic day. Stay tuned folks.