There is no explaining Pipeline. Everything that can possibly be said about the place has been repeated over and over. So much so that these Pipe cliches seem to take away from the magic of the arena that is the Bonzai Pipeline.
The first time I really got to see Pipeline work – and I mean really see it, study it, ask questions about it, make it the first thing I saw in the morning and the last thing I saw before dark – I thought of what it would be like to stumble across a wave like this as the first person to see it. What if, in today’s modern surf age, Pipeline was on an island that had not yet been discovered by surfers?
This would mean of course that there would be no locals that demand their waves, no traveling pros competing for the shot; no legendary rides to compare yourself to, no heroic Pipemasters victories, or near death experience stories in the back of your head, or actual deaths of surfers that have all contributed to the atmosphere that surrounds Pipeline today.
It would be you, whoever you told and that’s it.
That is how I like to think of Pipe. It keeps the magic alive.
It makes a shifting world title race the most exciting thing in the world. It makes a longtime bridesmaid the most deserving bride ever. And it made Joel Parkinson’s run at the 2012 Pipemasters what it actually was, magical.