The big wave surfing boys have - once again - raised the bar. And Aaron Gold has just ridden the biggest wave ever paddled at Jaws/Peahi in Maui.
The iconic Hawaiian surf break has been on fire. And with El Niño kicking in, some of the world's best big-wave warriors are scoring big time. January 15th was a special day for Aaron Gold.
The legends were all out there paddling for glory. Shane Dorian, Albee Layer, Danilo Couto, Kai Lenny, Pedro Calado, Francisco Porcella, DK and Ian Walsh, and even Brad Domke in surfboard mode.
But destiny had plans for another man.
Gold is originally from the Big Island of Hawaii, but he relocated to Oahu's North Shore. He is well used to heavy playing surfaces. When the moment of truth arrived, Aaron knew what he had in hands.
"[It was] Definitely one of longest drops I feel like I've ever had. It just kept going. I was like, 'Ok, I'm coming down,' and where I thought it would end, it had a whole other section to it," explained Aaron Gold.
"It felt big. It was my first wave; I'd just got out there, and I was like, oh, I'll catch a small warm-up. So, sometimes, it just finds you. I still want to ride the biggest wave in the world. I don't think that's it by far yet. I really feel there's another level."
It seemed too perfect. Jaws was pumping 40-to-60-foot beauties, a small collection of left-handers, barrels, and a few tricky closeouts. You just couldn't ask more from Mother Nature. Watch Aaron Gold's ride at 3:21.