Coast pair ready to stand up for Hawaii's toughest
Matt Johnston, Maroochy Journal
From: Quest Newspapers
July 30, 201112:00AM
Paul Jones of Maroochydore and Woogie Marsh of Peregian are doing the Molokai stand up paddle event in Hawaii. Picture: Ben Vos Source: Quest Newspapers
Sunshine Coast mates Paul Jones and Woogie Marsh will put themselves to the test this weekend when they attempt to cross one of the world's most treacherous stretches of water in the 15th Annual Molokai 2 Oahu event.
Peregian resident Marsh has completed the 32 mile stand up paddle crossing nine times before. Jones is on his first trip and said he was happy to have his mate by his side.
"I've got a good mentor and I appreciate someone like Woogie taking me because you would never do it by yourself," the Maroochydore resident said.
"It's good because I don't know what to expect and I'm a bit naive but it's a ride and a challenge and spending two weeks in Hawaii is happy days."
Marsh, on the other hand, knows exactly what to expect in terms of the mental and physical effort required but not even the most seasoned competitors can fully prepare for the confrontation with the fickle Ka'iwi Channel the channel of bones.
"This my 10th crossing but I'm still very much a learner as well. You never know what you're going to get. You can train your butt off and think you will do well and then the channel will just hand it back to you," he said.
"It's one of the largest bodies of water and gets the majority of the swell with winds and trades, so you can get up to 20ft breaking seas. You can get other days with k'ona winds and it will be as flat as.
"There are somewhere between five and seven races a year and if you want to go up and have fun in Hawaii, you don't do the Molokai.
"It's a personal challenge, physical challenge, mental challenge. It's not a pure down winder but you can go out and experience one of the biggest bumps you have ever caught in your life."
Marsh said the locals possessed an advantage with their knowledge of the stretch and the best courses to take but he said ultimately it came down to the conditions on that particular day.
The duo will be looking to break 5:30:00 for the challenge, which starts in Kaluakoi Beach on Molokai and finishes in Maunalua Bay on Oahu.
The stand up paddle event will be at the same time as the paddle board, which is shaping as a huge event. The Gold Coast's Jamie Mitchell is chasing a 10th victory.
Stand up paddle surfing continues to grow in popularity across the world and specifically the Sunshine Coast where more and more people are opting to pick up a paddle.
To monitor the boys' progress visit www.molokai2oahu.com