1. Getting spit on. Although it's a long shot, getting spit out of a barrel at Pipe is considered the pinnacle moment in a surfer's life. If you can achieve this, you've done battle with some of the meanest, ballsiest, craziest, and best surfers on Earth and earned a taste of heaven.
2. You might get your photo in a magazine. Yes, unknowns, no-names, and Joe Shmoes have paddled out on the North Shore and somehow been in the right spot at the right time. All the cameras are there waiting for you-just be prepared to be called "unknown" in the photo credit.
3. You'll be there to witness the dramas, fights, ripping, charging, and excitement you've seen on film. Nothing could ever beat the feeling of the beach shaking at Pipeline or the intensity of a crazy wipeout at Off The Wall. Being there is a blessing, even if you're sitting on the sidelines.
4. Seeing stars. Cruising along the beach during the winter season is like walking through the pages of a surf magazine. All your heroes are there. You could shake hands with Kelly Slater, throw a shaka to Bruce Irons, or you could even mingle with Makua Rothman at Haleiwa Joe's.
5. Surf by yourself. Another long shot, but at the right time of day, at the right spot, you could be shredding with no one but a few sea turtles.
6. Party. The North Shore during winter is a mecca for pros, pro-hos, tagalongs, transplants, lovers, losers, friends, and locals who all want to party. There's plenty of action to go around if you know where to find it.
7. Bronze up. Depending on where you live, the weather on the North Shore is most likely better. Sunny days, warm nights, cool breezes. One of the best things to do on O'ahu is just sit on the beach and bronze.
8. Body surf Ehukai Beach Park. This simple pleasure is a must for any visitor. On small days, Ehukai Beach Park is a playground. You'll feel like a little kid as you get washed up and down the beach.
9. Road trip to Honolulu. The crowded city of Honolulu is a tourist-friendly beehive of excitement. Don't be afraid to act like a nerd and rent a longboard in Waikiki, or go to a "luau" and eat a pig with a group of bankers from Iowa.
10. Talk story. Telling your friends at home about your North Shore adventure is half the fun. "Then I met Sunny Garcia, and he was with Occy, and we were, like, broing down at Pipe. It was the best."
Ten Reasons Not To Go To The North Shore Of Hawai'i During The Winter Season.
1.There's always the chance of getting cracks. Don't drop in and don't act stupid-you'll have a better chance at dodging a punch.
2.Crowds. The whole rest of the world is here, too.
3.Cost of living. The North Shore is expensive. A box of Ritz crackers is two bucks more at Foodland than it is at Vons.
4. Where do I stay? Unless you have a friend who lives there, you'll be sleeping in your car, haole.
5. Plane-ticket rape. Ticket prices to Hawai'i substantially increase the nearer to Christmas you plan on traveling. Go early for a break.
6. Board rape. The airlines that fly to Hawai'i are notorious for overcharging, destroying, and losing your surfboards. Have fun!
7. Where's my wallet? Yes, there is theft on the North Shore. Remember when Rick Kane had his art supplies stolen?
8. Kona winds and flat spells. Every few years, the season sucks.
9. Mosquitoes, spiders and centipedes, oh my. There's a good chance one, if not all, of these little f-kers will bite you.
10. Legal cracks. Did we mention it's practically legal to punch people on the North Shore?