Nineteen-year-old Haiku, Maui, surfer Tyler Larronde took the surfing world by storm two years ago when he landed on the cover (above) of Surfer magazine taking a massive free-fall drop at Jaws (aka Peahi), the famed big-wave spot located just down the street from his house. After he dropped the video below, titled “Couleurs of Maui,” we caught up with him to get the scoop on the epic season of big-wave surfing Maui has had.
Tell us about this winter at Jaws.
This winter at Jaws has been epic! It started off with a nice big swell in October and was consistent with a lot of nice, big, glassy days throughout the season. It finally ended with one of the best days I've ever seen out there with just me and a few friends.
What was the craziest thing you saw happen this winter at Jaws?
Probably the two minutes of chaos that happened when a boat capsized when a wave hit it, then, 15 seconds later, Dege O'Connell dropped in on one of the biggest waves I’ve seen someone drop into and the lip came right down on him. I got the gnarliest chills just watching that. He ended up getting a lot of stitches and is out of the water for a while.
When did you get into spearfishing?
My dad was always spearfishing when I was young and he would always come home with fish and lobsters. When I was about 9 or 10 I got really into it and we would go together.
How do you think spearfishing complements big-wave surfing?
I look at spearfishing like training: It teaches me to be super relaxed in the water and to be able to work on your breath holds. That makes me feel a lot more confident in the ocean—which is key to being comfortable in big waves.
Where do you see the future of big-wave surfing heading?
Big-wave surfing is getting taken to the next level with every session. People are experimenting with different boards and getting more barreled than people were while towing-in back in the day.
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