2012 Volcom Fiji Pro Flipbook: Blue Friday

posted by / Lightbox / July 2, 2012


The Volcom Fiji Pro was… well, it was something else. As far as contests go, you really couldn’t ask for much more. Maybe just to be a goofy-footer. The world’s finest got a crack at one of the world’s finest lefts, and then Friday came, and most of them didn’t want a piece anymore or were undergunned or wanted a piece but the contest was called off or…whatever. So the big-wave calvary had at it — and they made us gasp. They made us cheer. That Friday took surfing to another level. The contest wrapped in epic Restaurants/Cloudbreak the following two days and, quite deservedly, you know who won. But who’re we kidding, surfing’s collective final was that Friday, and the man with the highest wave count that day was Kohl Christensen.

Here’s what he had to say:


We always have a choice to make. How we make it depends on the information we gather, what our peers may be doing, but ultimately, it comes down to ourselves. The crew that showed up to Fiji for the big swell showed up because they wanted to get the best barrels of their lives. Many of them did. Some were guys that missed last year’s opportunity and would rather step in front of a bus than have to see those ridiculous photos again. Ramon [Navarro] was one of them, so was Twiggy [Baker]. Both those guys traveled across the planet last minute to make it and it paid off. Fiji delivered and they got the waves of their lives. So did all of us. We got to feel it, breathe it, be there and witness some of the best paddle-in tube riding in the history of our sport. Reef [McIntosh], Ian [Walsh] and [Dave] Wassel muscled through cartoonsized dream waves backhand. [Mark] Healey and Nate [Fletcher] pumped big boards through sections that looked like impossible closeouts. Those guys are veterans, they’ve had a stab at it before and took that experience to the next level. And it was “next level.” But what’s next? Have we peaked? Is that it? Is that all the world’s gonna give? But there were a couple of waves that came through unridden. And those waves will be ridden. How? Shit, I don’t know. Ask Healey. But all I know is if you would have showed the world any one of these photos from that day four years ago, they would have told you to piss off. They would have told you, “there’s no frickin’ way he paddled that.” But he did.

2012 Volcom Fiji Pro Flipbook: Blue Friday

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  • Mik

    For me, the decision that WAS made was the BEST decision.

    I got to see the best surfers in the world—both WCT & Big Wave Chargers—doing what they train for.

    To excel in waves that big you need to be prepared mentally, physically, and with tested equipment so you feel dialed in. Yeah, allot of guys can grab someone else’s board and charge and see what happens, maybe make a wave; but in a contest? Not. You need to know from experience how deep to take off, which waves to avoid. Bad decisions are heavy in that size surf, and according to what I read, the hold-downs at Cloudbreak at that size are really long, and sometimes two waves, so that makes it life and death.

    So to sit here and read some magazine writer spouting off on how he/she wanted to see both elements in a contest, I’d say, ok dude. you go first, on whatever board you’ve got, and then we’ll let you make the call… for yourself. Otherwise, show some respect for the men who made intelligent decisions that valued the lives and families of everyone involved.

    The big wave crew was awesome out there. Years of experience helped those guys get barrels that they’d sacrificed for, over many years, in many places. They deserved the opportunity and our attention, and I had my mind blown watching. But they’re on a different path. And I wouldn’t expect them all to be able to compete with the WCT in 2′ — 12′ surf.

    Similarly, the 4 WCT guys that surfed a heat in that power showed that they can charge, regardless. Melling, Bede / Otten, Raoni (photos please??) all got heavy waves; and Kelly has backdoored 25′ Waimea… But they’re real deal is radical maneuvers, on and above the wave face… And they’d pretty much smoke anyone else on the planet, including the heavy water crews best small wave guys…

    Except for one:

    John John Florence…

    Who can in fact, go head to head with anyone in the world in any surfing environment…

    And that is why John John IS going to be a World Champion in the very near future.

    And to me, that is what I learned most emphatically by watching everyone at this event:

    This kid is next level.

    First year on tour, and he has it all, (except maybe strategy).


  • Spike

    These Surfing flipbook articles are the best thing on any website anywhere. Great photography and composition. Thanks boys ( and girls!) Now just add some sound.

  • James

    Thanks for posting this. Amazing work! #supermegawesome

  • zach


  • tanner

    Soooooo good, such a good feeling to the whole event,
    good job guys

  • Matt O’Brien

    this makes for a waaaay better show than any POP BOOM BANG WHIZZ could ever produce… thanks Surfing Gang.

  • andrew k

    You guys going to make this available in print? I’d buy it.

  • Mark Reynolds

    How can I buy the volcom flip book?

  • Tori Ray

    This is so unbelievably sick.
    Perfect composition, totally felt the vibes of the whole event right through my laptop.
    Kudos to the photographers, design team, and of course.. the surfers!!!

  • james D

    Take my money already, damnit! I would love to see this printed on something cool, like high quality and/or oversized paper. Watching this day unfold online was unreal. So glad I had internet at work that day.

  • Maria C.

    Loved this! Please tell me where I can buy this. Many thanks to the Surfers and Photographers who made this possible. Great Monday Night Read after a long commute. 😉

  • Austin

    Where’s da flip book came to it 3 times, refreshed 3 times nothing????

  • Ciaran

    Surfing mag,

    Can this be printed up? I’d certainly buy it.
    Incredible photography. Incredible to watch it live.

  • http://www.modernality.com Jason Miller

    Thanks Ciaran. At the moment, we don’t have any plans on making a printed version. Maybe one day down the road…