I get in the barrel on my own power. You do it behind a ski on waves that hawaiians and californians (you know, ACTUALY big wave riders) would laugh at. Congratulations, you went out during a hurricane. Some people may call that respectful, I call it idiocy.
Dude, there's a big difference between what's in those pics and 12'-15' faces at Blacks, or the Slooze or Sunset Cliffs. I say this only from personal experience. Crazy wind and nasty rips make a world of difference, especially when paddling out. Blacks and the Slooze have channels which makes the paddle out pretty different then paddling into pounding shore break. Sunset Cliffs breaks so far from the shore that once you actually get past the waves breaking on the cliffs themselves, the paddle to the outer reef isn't that bad except it's almost a half mile. I got respect for whatever the hell it is those ole boys are doin in those shots. I sure wouldn't paddle out into that nastiness. I have a wife and kids. Everyone out here, looking at the pics coming from the EC the last couple of days are all saying the same thing, "DAMN!"
Now the shots Mike Doyle (Coil Surfboards) is posting on the Swaylock's forum of Florida right now, that's where it's at and where I wish I was (my break is 1-3' today). Big, beautiful, perfectly breaking OH+ waves in the sun and warmth. There's a world of difference between that and what's showing in those photos. Call it foolhardy, willfully ignorant of their mortality and death defying, but easy? I don't think so. I have a feeling that the pictures don't do it justice either.
I think you're wrong man, sorry. It's always easy to criticize though, so who knows maybe I am. I know pictures never impart us with the speed, wave thickness, harshness of the conditions and sheer ferocity of the ocean. I also know that everyone thinks they are a better surfer than they actually are (unless you really are the sh!1, in which case, Respect). Anybody who's out in this is going to be telling tales about the Winter of '12 and Hurricane Sandy for years to come, that's for sure.
Actually I live on the West Coast. What wildlyfe guys have to tow into, people out here consider to be average size surf.
Hahaha! You're from Cali?!? hahahaha! I bet you wear tight jeans and listen to dub step.. We never "tow" it's called "step offs and for your information the 11x world champ Kelly Slater was doing step offs in florida today on the same size waves we were surfing. So there ya have it. Have fun doing 3 to the beach at grandview. Buy a ticket to Hawaii this winter and we can talk about paddling, maybe I'll introduce you to some of my friends with the black trunks. Aloha buddy. Been paddling on the North Shore for 12 consecutive seasons.