THE one-and-a-half mile dirt track leading to the viewing point was almost impassable following the previous day's rain, but that didn't deter the spectators slipping and sliding their way down through the cane field.
And for those lucky enough to negotiate that path on the final day of 2012? The reward was to watch a standout day at Peahi, the wave formally known as Jaws. The day was effectively a training day for the Red Bull Jaws paddle event which came close to being called on (as did the Eddie).
"We have been monitoring this developing swell very closely but the real issue is the timing," said Contest Director Mike Parsons. "There will be some very large waves late Sunday/early Monday, but we do not have 90 percent confidence that either day will offer up the required seven hours of optimal 30-50 foot wave face heights that we are looking for to make this a great event.
Invited to this alternative New Year's Eve party was a cast including Ian Walsh, DK Walsh, Albee Layer, Dave Wassell, Jeff Rowley, Kai Lenny and Alex Gray amongst a host of others willed themselves over the edge of a day which might not have been a record breaker but was pretty damn good.
© Mike Neal