Many people have similar questions, the most common are addressed here.

Bud's Surfing Life - Hawaii

About this Website
Using Disposable Cameras in the Surf
Use of the Photos
Wave Heights
Where to Surf, "Secret Spots" etc.
Learning to Surf/Board Rentals/Surf Lessons/Camps/Schools on Oahu
Wave Seasons, North Shore, South Shore
Surfing the Outer Islands of Hawaii
Places to stay/rent in Hawaii
Surfing "Tips"
My "home made" indoor surf rack


I love to get your feedback. I try to answer all email but for general stuff I prefer that you
Post a question or comment in the appropriate forum here

<>If you must send an email, click on "Bud" in the member list here for the address
Otherwise your email may be filtered as spam and deleted without being read

There is also a

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This website is my place on the 'net to share our surfing experiences with friends and anyone who might be interested. I update the site weekly, with at least a few notes about each of my surf sessions. I usually take a few pictures in the surf with a disposable waterproof camera or from shore with my digital still or digital camcorder. Obviously, we're not out to win any awards, just stoked to share our escapades in the surf with like-minded people. Unless otherwise noted, I provide and maintain all the content here. If you ask "why?" - I'd guess that you're not a surfer. Unless noted, everything is original, nothing "borrowed" - I hope you enjoy it.  - Bud


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I was turned on to disposable water proof cameras in 1998 and  since then, I always pack one when get my gear together for a  session.  Taking water shots and surfing at the same time can be tricky and we do not let it interfere with our surf time.  My respect  goes out to "real" water photogs. . . Being surfers first and (clearly) not serious photographers, we are always torn between the desire to  record our sessions, and the desire to ride and enjoy the surf to the fullest. Surfers will understand why our pictures may not always depict the best surf: When the surf is HAPPENING you want to  SURF, not take pictures. Plus, if the surf is heavy, taking pictures in the impact zone is tough. The cameras are very limited, too. You have to be close to get a decent shot. The best surf spots for this have a well-defined take off and (preferably) a well defined channel. Most of the pictures don't come out very well, either. In spite of all the hassles, it can be a blast. And that first look at "just  developed" pictures of yourself, well . . .

Being able to take pictures without compromising my time in the surf is the #1 reason I do it. The obvious limitations of the camera are bummers, but they are extremely light, very durable and  cheap. I've used them constantly for three years, in tiny to 3xoh surf - - lost a bunch of them but never had one leak. It fits in my pocket;  I've gotten so used to the plastic box on my thigh that it feels weird when I don't have one with me in the surf. They are (almost) idiot proof. And once in a while you snap a cool shot or three. If you're lucky as I am, you have surfbuds that are stoked to take pictures of you too. If you want amateur water pics & the waves aren't too heavy. . .with a disposable you can surf and take pics without interrupting a surf session. If you're trunking it, it's way easy. While paddling back out after a wave, pull it out of your side pocket & hold the rubber strap with your teeth to be ready for one of your surfbuds or a good wave shot.  Biggest problem is that you have to be pretty close to get a decent shot.  Fuji disposables are light enough that it's
easy to duck waves with the strap held with your teeth. If the situation presents itself, sit up & take the shot, wind it up and stick it back in the pocket. Duck soup. 

I can't say enough about how glad I am that, for the past 18 months or so [since May 1998], I started keeping a simple record of all my surf sessions. Even if you don't keep a detailed description, all it takes is a few key words to trigger the flood of details you would not have  remembered otherwise. That's when you realize how much you actually "forgot". Going back over written records of past sessions is like reliving the session = s-t-o-k-e. Having pictures, even crappy ones, enhances and verifies everything- like adding color & sound to black & white silent movies. . . 

I have found that a pair of shorts with a big, velcro closure side pocket is the best way to carry the camera while surfing. The Fuji "QuickSnap" 35mm one time use camera (pre loaded with 800 speed film),  is the best. The trigger & winder is better suited to taking pictures on the fly than the Kodak equivalent. I get them in two-packs at Sam's Club for less than $20. Each has 27 exposures.

I wrote a bit more on the topic on this page.

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It is a labor of love, but it is labor. I work hard (and at my own expense) to keep this site going. Please have the courtesy to ask before using any of the images. If you have permission to use our photo(s) on your website, please save & upload the file(s) to your own directory. To place a link to Bud's Surfing Life/WaveLust.com on your website, use this URL - http://www.wavelust.com
If you want, I have a few small link buttons to use - 


Bud's Surfing Life - Hawaii


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For obvious reasons, most of the surf spots go unnamed. Certain well known breaks are sometimes identified - Sunset, Pipeline, Velzyland, Rocky Point & Ala Moana Bowls, for example. 

Please don't ask me to name or direct you to "secret spots." 

If you're looking for mellow surf, the best time/place is summer (approximately May-September) on the south shore. More info for beginners on Oahu here

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When describing the surf we take on, I usually refer to the size by feet or "_x overhead" (2xoh = 2 times overhead, etc.), measured (my best guesstimate) from trough to crest (the wave face). The intent is to give an idea of the rideable portion of the average waves and biggest sets encountered.

I stopped using "Hawaiian Scale" to avoid all the confusion it caused.

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Learn to surf? Here's a few links and some info to get you started.

<>You might start with this list of topics for visitors and beginners at my forum

Santa Barbara Surfing has an excellent write up for beginners - Click Here
Ric Harwood maintains the FAQ for the newsgroup alt.surfing and has a ton of info- Click Here

Very detailed guide here, excellent work from this website

Surfline's "Learn to Surf" tutorial

Another good learn to surf link

<>Check my Forum/Classifieds for surfboards, accessories and local surf businesses

I do not receive compensation and I do not "endorse" any of the companies linked below. If you want your business listed here, let me know

Lessons/Camps/Schools South Shore Oahu
Hans Hedeman's Surf School
Hawaii International Surf Academy

<>Lessons/Camps/Schools West Side Oahu

Lessons/Camps/Schools North Shore Oahu

Sunset Suzy
North Shore Eco-Surf Tours
Carol Philips Body Boarding
Surfboard Rental North Shore
Haleiwa Surf &Sea (808) 627-0400
Tropical Rush (808) 637-8886

Surfboard Rental South Shore
Local Motion (808) 979-7873
Downing Hawaii (808) 737-9696

Surfboard Rental West Side
http://www.hawaiisurfboardrentals.com/   (808) 672-5055

Buy & sell used surfboards, local website, great resource
SurfboardShack dot com

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In a nutshell, North Shore ("country") for the famous big winter surf and South Shore ("town") for typically smaller summer surf. For example - Pipeline, Sunset and Waimea are north shore breaks and Ala Moana and Queens (Waikiki) are south shore breaks.

In general, I consider May through September to be summer surf season and October through April to be winter. See a wave warning sign here

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Sorry  to say that I have not surfed at any of the outer islands (Hawaii, Maui, Kauai, Molokai etc.) so I cannot give any advice.

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I've never vacationed here so I can't say how much a hotel room is or where the best/cheapest one might be found. I'm aware of backpacker places and hostels but I avoid "endorsing" anyplace I have not tried myself.

For the average Joe, it's expensive to live here. Last time I checked, the median price for a single family home was about $360,000 and condominium was $160,000. Expect to pay at least $800-1200/month to rent a basic unfurnished 2 bedroom apartment central/urban Oahu.

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