Surfers out in force as big swell forecast to roll in - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Surfers out in force as big swell forecast to roll in

A big swell brought spectators and surfers to the North Shore on Tuesday. Image Courtesy: Jake Kunukau A big swell brought spectators and surfers to the North Shore on Tuesday. Image Courtesy: Jake Kunukau
NORTH SHORE, OAHU (HawaiiNewsNow) -

At Pipeline on Tuesday, surfers enjoyed the waves, but onlookers expecting giant waves were a day early.

Wave faces of around 25 feet are expected at Pipeline on Wednesday.

"We're coming back tomorrow if it's going on," said Los Angeles resident Madia Savino.

Surf forecasters expect a west northwest swell to roll into North Shore beaches with a steady rise overnight.

The big waves could trigger the start of the Billabong Pipe Masters.

"Many of the best big wave riders and best pipeline surfers live right here. They'll be a feature of day one and definitely very capable in heavy maxi conditions," said Triple Crown executive director Jodi Wilmott.

Besides the Billabong Pipe Masters title, the Vans Triple Crown and men's world championship are also on the line.

"Three very important titles to decide here and we want to offer them the best surf at hand," Wilmott said.

The holding period for the Pipe Masters began Tuesday and runs through December 20. 

It's city lifeguard Tau Hannemann's 10th year at Pipeline. He expects to be busy Wednesday.

"It sounds like it's going to be pretty massive and so we'll try to keep everyone out of the water," he said. "We'll have the three tower guards here and two people from the Jet Ski operation standing by with us."

Though the waves were smaller Tuesday, lifeguards were still kept busy throughout the day.

There were 395 preventive actions on the North Shore on Tuesday, and 16 rescues.

Lifeguards rescued six people on west-facing shores, and made 370 preventive actions.

Eric Stano and his sons, on vacation from Australia, jumped into the water at Pipeline on Tuesday to catch a few waves.

"The boys wanted to go and have a look at the Pipeline and see what it was like," he said.

Copyright 2015 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved.

Powered by Frankly