12/9/11: Day one update. Pipeline roared to life yesterday. We showed up the night before. Let’s just say it’s a minor culture shock coming straight from Orange County to front row seating at huge Pipeline. Believe it or not it’s looks a lot bigger than on the web cast. The wave kills and yesterday it was looking deadly on the first “real” swell of the season. Pipe is not a wave you can just go out and surf with no experience, no matter how good you are. San Clemente’s Kolohe Andino was up first against Aussie charger Laurie Towner. Laurie air-dropped on a big one and blew his shoulder out (people get hurt all day long out here) giving Kolohe the heat. The 17-year-old showed heart in the huge conditions and pulled into a big second reef wave but got pinched on the end. He got some clean ones in his second heat but fell short to Dusty Payne. Hawaiian Mason Ho was up next. Mason took some advice from his elders and pulled out his 7’7″ guns. He waited out the back, rolled into some giant waves, pulled up high, made some good ones and others not – but no doubt charged hard and put on a show in waves of consequence. He just got nipped by Adam Melling in his second heat. It’s kinda hard to comprehend hearing 3 point scores when guys are risking their lives taking beyond vertical drops on huge waves but “just not getting covered up enough”. To watch the contest live CLICK HERE. Check out the highlights and photos below.

Mason Ho – time to pull out the big boards.

Cheeseburger and Mason getting some tips from someone who knows a thing or two about surfing Pipeline – Michael Ho.

Mason Ho and Kalani Chapman talk big Pipeline. Not a bad guy to get some advice from.

Mason Ho getting his 7’7″ …Lost surfboard ready.

Kalani Chapman checks Mason’s equipment.

Cheeseburger – the #1 board caddy on the North Shore.

The peanut gallery at the Volcom house.


Gotta get your mind right before surfing Pipeline.

Mason signs half of his broken board for a fan.

“This is way better than a T-Shirt”

Mason and Cheeseburger do the morning show.

Mason Ho, Kalani Chapman and JD Irons.

Pipeline surfer and North Shore lifeguard Mikey Bruneau.

Another day in Hawaii.

Mason Ho – Photo: Surfline.com/Jeremiah Klein

Mason Ho – Photo: Surfline.com/Tyler Cuddy

Kolohe Andino – Photo: Surfline.com/Tyler Cuddy

Dusty Payne and Kolohe Andino – Photo: Surfline.com/Jeremiah Klein

Kolohe Andino – Photo: ASPWORLDTOUR.COM/Kirstin

Mason Ho – Photo: ASPWORLDTOUR.COM/Kirstin

Mason Ho – Photo: ASPWORLDTOUR.COM/Kirstin

Kolohe Andino and Dusty Payne – Photo: SURFERMAG.COM/Ellis

Kolohe Andino – Photo: SURFERMAG.COM/Ellis


Mason and Coco Ho – Photo: Transworldsurf.com/Nelly

Mason Ho – Photo: Transworldsurf.com/Nelly

Jason Frederico the day before the contest. Photo: Surfline.com/Corey Wilson

Michael Ho’s 1982 Pipe Masters trophy. Mason switched the guys stance and added the cast to make it historically correct.

Coco and Mason Ho at the Surfer Poll Awards. Mason’s wearing our new “Legend” tee – it’s a pic of his dad.