While their economy has taken an enourmous hit through the lack of tourism, the Hawaiian islands' residents have enjoyed unrestricted access to their beaches for watersports for most of the last 12 months. We fished for a Maui update from the Naish team and to also hear of the more arduous routes some team riders endured to make it out there for testing / photoshoot campaigns throughout 2020
ROUTE TO MAUI: UK > DUBAI > MAURITIUS > DUBAI > SEATTLE > MAUI
Tom, stopping off in Mauritius / Photo: Tim
Tom Seager was at home in the UK when it became clear that a second lockdown was about to go into effect. To avoid getting stuck he realised that and he needed to act fast and leave. Thankfully, Tom had been in conversation with fellow team rider, Louka Pitot, who told him Mauritius was open for travel and kiting was allowed. In order to gain entry into Mauritius, Tom had to stay in Dubai for two weeks, before then quarantining in a hotel room for 14 days when he eventually reached Mauritius. Once out of quarantine, he met up with Louka and they were kiting, winging, and shooting as much as possible. The good times wouldn't last as Mauritius also then went into lockdown. Tom hadn’t officially planned a Maui trip at that point, but being that lockdown was inevitable, he quickly booked a trip that involved flying back to Dubai for a few days in order to enter the United States. Tom flew to Seattle, was heavily interrogated and almost denied entry into the US because his travel route raised suspicions. After hours of verifying his identity and his reasons for travel, he was released from customs and on his way to Maui to meet up with the Naish crew.
ROUTE TO MAUI: AUSTRALIA > MAUI > HOOD RIVER > MAUI
Ewan, eventually in Hawaii / Photo: Frankie Bees
Ewan was en-route to Maui at a time when Australia was virtually Covid free. He arrived in LA with no problems and boarded his flight to Hawaii. When he arrived at OGG, he presented his negative Covid results and was told that he would have to quarantine, since the test he’d gotten wasn’t administered from a trusted travel partner. To avoid a mandatory 14 day quarantine, Ewan turned around after at least 21 hours of flying and boarded another flight back to the mainland. He spent some time in Hood River with some friends and made plans to get the proper test within 72 hours of travel, only to get snowed in for two days, further delaying his return to Maui!
CHRISTOPHE AND HELENA
ROUTE TO MAUI: EUROPE > COSTA RICA > LA VENTANA > MAUI
Helena Brochocka, La Ventana, Baja / Photo: Christophe
Let's be straight: these two didn't exactly suffer! Oh what it is to be young, free and in a relationship with another pro kiter on the same team! Due to the restrictions on travel from Europe to the US, Christophe Tack and Helena Brochocka had to spend two weeks in a country where travel was permitted to the US, so they decided to split that time up by visiting two beautiful destinations. The couple flew from Europe to Costa Rica, where they spent a week relaxing and scoring surf. They then hopped over to La Ventana, BCS for their second week and packed it full of riding time. They were then seamlessly able make it to Maui in time for a week of shooting new gear.
Tack, Baja / Photo: Helena
TRAVEL ADVICE: As of May 2021 when this issue was produced, there are currently travel restrictions in effect for visitors arriving to any of the Hawaiian Islands. In order to avoid the mandatory ten day quarantine restriction, there is a pre-travel Covid testing option, allowing travellers from mainland USA a quarantine bypass — being that they provide a negative test from a trusted partner. Due to current Covid restrictions, you cannot fly into the USA from anywhere in Europe though, along with other countries. In order to go to the United States, you must travel to an approved travel country, stay for two weeks and then you can fly to the US... and from there you can make it to Hawaii. FIND MORE INFORMATION ON TRAVELLING TO HAWAII: www.hawaiitourismauthority.org/covid-19-updates FIND MORE OF THE NAISH TEAM'S SUCCESSES: www.naish.com