Big Wave Tour Northern Hemisphere season kicks off

Now midway through the month of October, we have officially entered the waiting period for the Northern Hemisphere portion of the World Surf League’s Big Wave Tour. This backend of the schedule that runs until Feb. 28, 2018 includes events at three famed big-wave surf spots: Nazaré, Jaws and Mavericks.

The waiting period for two of the three remaining contests, the Nazaré Challenge in Portugal and the Pe’ahi Challenge in Maui, started on Oct. 15. The third event, the recently-acquired Mavericks contest, does not yet have a solidified start date.

According to the WSL, the Mavericks contest’s running period will be “set shortly following the coordination with the array of governmental agencies involved with the production of the event.”

The WSL just last week finalized the acquisition of the Mavericks big-wave contest permit and are working as swiftly as possible to get things underway for this winter.

This winter will also mark the return of the Women’s Pe’ahi Challenge for its second year at Jaws. And the WSL has also noted that women will also get the chance to surf at Mavericks, as well.

Not only that, but the first-ever all-female big-wave contest, Red Bull Queen of the Bay, is lining up for this winter also at Waimea Bay. Red Bull Queen of the Bay is not part of the WSL’s Big Wave Tour.

2017-18 BWT Men’s Nazaré Challenge:
Invitees: Grant Baker, Pedro Calado, Greg Long, Jamie Mitchell, Billy Kemper, Nic Lamb, Will Skudin, João De Macedo, Cristian Merello, Kai Lenny, Makuakai Rothman, Lucas Chianca, Francisco Porcella, Trevor Sven Carlson, Tom Lowe, Garrett McNamara, Alex Botelho, Tom Butler, Andrew Cotton, Antonio Silva, Hugo Vau and Nic Von Rupp.
Event Alternates: Kealii Mamala and Natxo Gonzalez.
Performer of the Year Alternates: Peter Mel, Nathan Florence and Jojo Roper.

2017-18 BWT Men’s Pe’ahi Challenge:
Invitees: Grant Baker, Pedro Calado, Greg Long, Jamie Mitchell, Billy Kemper, Nic Lamb, Will Skudin, João De Macedo, Cristian Merello, Kai Lenny, Makuakai Rothman, Lucas Chianca, Francisco Porcella, Trevor Sven Carlson, Tom Lowe, Shane Dorian, Ian Walsh, Albee Layer, Mark Healey, Aaron Gold and Tyler Larronde.
Event Alternates: Shaun Walsh, Danilo Couto and Torrey Meister.
Performer of the Year Alternates: Peter Mel, Nathan Florence and Alex Botelho.

2017-18 BWT Women’s Pe’ahi Challenge:
Invitees: Paige Alms, Justine Dupont, Andrea Moeller, Keala Kennelly, Felicity Palmateer and Bianca Valenti.
Alternates: Emily Erickson, Nicole Pacelli and Laura Enever.

Details will be forthcoming on the Mavericks contest and invitees. Currently, Kai Lenny leads the Men’s Big Wave Tour rankings after claiming victory at the Puerto Escondido Challenge earlier this summer.

Get ready for a wild winter. There is plenty to be excited for in the world of big-wave surfing.

Kai Lenny at Jaws. Photo: Courtesy of Richard Hallman/WSL

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