Back In The Water

Gary Kewley
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Friday - April 21, 2006
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Kauai’s Bethany Hamilton, who lost an arm to a tiger shark in 2003, spent Easter ripping it up at Bells Beach in Australia
Kauai’s Bethany Hamilton, who lost an arm to a tiger
shark in 2003, spent Easter ripping it up at Bells
Beach in Australia

Aloha, wave warriors and beach-goers!

It looks like our water is finally cleaning up enough to venture back in. Thank God ... it’s been quite awhile. Still, be careful if you have cuts or if you’re feeling under the weather. Always look for leftover “possible contamination” signs and if in doubt, don’t go out. The lifeguards should be able to inform you as well. If by chance you start feeling bad within, say, up to 24 hours after your time in the ocean, then go get checked out ASAP. Thanks!

The last word I received from Watson Okubo at the Clean Water Branch was that the “numbers are looking real good. Magic Island Finger across Bowls is looking a lot better. With those numbers, I would surf it. With today’s good sun, tomorrow’s numbers should be better, as long as it does not rain heavily.” This was sent to me last Friday (4/14). Stoked! Plus, warning signs were pulled at Waimanalo and Bellows! Just to be sure, signs are still posted for Ala Wai Canal, the yacht harbor and the canoe launch area.

So how does the surf look? We should be seeing nice 6-foot NNW swells if you’re reading this on Thursday the 20th. Trades and typical nice Hawaii weather should prevail as far out as we can see ... at least through the end of April. Of course, this doesn’t mean the occasional “variation” won’t sneak in. But if you’re still feeling under the “clouds of March,” you may step out now ... you’re safe!

For those of you who didn’t hear, the Fosters ASP World Tour is “on” Down Under for the 34th annual Bells Beach contest. This is event No. 2 out of 12. Kelly Slater is leading the pack. The surfer girls are in Fiji right now at my favorite spot on planet Earth: Tavarua! Melanie Redman-Carr (Australia) is currently ranked No. 1. There are eight women’s tour events. This contest also boasts the largest prize purse for a women’s pro surfing contest! As of this writing, the future winners are setting up their destiny in “wet cement.” So who will it be once it dries? Results for the Rip Curl Pro in Torquay, Australia, and the Roxy Pro in Fiji can be found at

Hey, guess who’s popping up on my surf radar recently?

Bethany Hamilton!

She got to spend Easter at Bells Beach, where they’re holding the men’s event mentioned above. She was ripping it up for the spectators during the Rip Curl Grom-Search International finals. She placed a very respectable fifth place and even scored an 8.2 out of 10 points! Not bad when you consider that she’s competing on an international level - with one arm! As most of the world knows, Bethany narrowly survived a 15-foot tiger shark attack in Hanalei back in 2003. Since then she’s become a living testimony to her amazing grace, Christian faith and surfing talent.

Miss Hamilton will be heading off to Brazil next with Hawaii’s Olympic Team to see if they can “keep the gold” they earned for the first time last year! This is truly a team event ... no, wait ... it’s a state of Hawaii event, and we need to be there for them. No, you don’t have to fly to Brazil, but you can “be there” by supporting their long journey in May. Please check out how by logging onto my web-site. The big fundraiser is at Local Motion Sunday, April 30.

I’ll see you in the water and back here next week!

I’m GQ, dropping In 4 U!

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