Hawaii Sees Highest Surf in Decades

HONOLULU, Dec. 8 (UPI) — Extremely high waves on the Hawaiian islands of Oahu and Maui have attracted thousands of surfers and onlookers, clogging traffic in the area, observers say.

Surf lovers jammed Oahu’s Kamehameha Highway and packed every inch of the North Shore beach Monday as waves as high as 40 feet pounded the shore, while massive, 50-foot waves were predicted for Tuesday, Hawaii Magazine reported.

The magazine said this winter’s first round of swells was already being considered the best in many years, perhaps decades. It reported that at Maui’s north shore Peahi Beach — also known as “Jaws” for its big winter waves — surfers were citing swells of up to 50 feet from crest to trough.

Hawaii Magazine said that while no delays or cancellations were announced for such surfing contests as the Vans Triple Crown of Surfing, the Billabong Pipeline Masters for men or the Billabong Pro Maui for women, The Quiksilver In Memory of Eddie Aikau Invitational was called off.

The surf was dangerously high at two Maui beaches, which were closed Monday by county parks and recreation officials, the Honolulu Advertiser reported. Baldwin and Hookipa beach parks on the North Shore of Maui were closed.

Copyright 2009 by United Press International

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