Pipeline's crystal-clear water and gaping blue barrels offer an ideal venue for pro surfers to put their GoPro skills to the test. In December, between heats at the Billabong Pipe Masters, a handful of competitors submitted some impressive imagery from the deadly reef in hopes of winning the GoPro Challenge Hawaii.
The GoPro Challenge is a contest-within-a-contest, in which Championship Tour athletes can submit GoPro videos from a contest venue during the event waiting period. The winning video is selected by a panel of five judges -- three from the WSL staff and two from GoPro -- based on cinematography, degree of difficulty of shooting, perspective and overall beauty and lighting. Each requirement holds equal weight. The winner takes home a prize of $10k USD, and some cinematic bragging rights.
While all the mesmerizing tubes from Hawaii made life hard on the judges, this spinning Backdoor cavern captured by Bruce Irons stole the show. Though the former CT star is one of Kauai's favorite sons, the hallowed right at Pipe has been his stomping ground for nearly two decades. And judging by his numerous G.P.C entries from Backdoor, the 37-year-old is still dominant as ever out there.
Although not as aesthetically pleasing as Bruce's waves, Adam Melling also posted a few convincing entries from Backdoor. The frothy barrel featured below ended up earning third place.