The draw is set for the field of 24, each heat stacked with a combo of local California chargers and international big-wave surfers. The competitors have been given their 24-hour notice that the contest is on, and will begin arranging travel from Brazil, Hawaii, Southern California, and South Africa. With the swell hitting Hawaii a few days before it makes its way to Half Moon Bay, a big portion of these invited surfers plan on paddling at Waimea Bay on Friday before heading to California for the contest. It won’t be big enough for The Eddie to run on Friday, but it will be big enough to make things interesting at The Bay, nonetheless.
For spectators, the cliffs will be closed this year after dozens were injured by a rogue wave in 2010. Fans can watch a live stream online or on the big screen at the Mavericks Invitational Festival: a paid affair at a local hotel just north of Half Moon Bay. Click here for more info.