January has seen numerous swell trains pounding the Hawaiian islands and the West Coast. When conditions line up properly, the world’s most fearless big-wave riders convene on Maui’s north shore to surf Peahi, aka Jaws, aka The Most Terrifying But Beautiful Wave You’ve Ever Seen. Peahi breaks far out to sea, on a reef that rapidly rises from the deep ocean. It’s difficult to know where to sit while waiting for a wave, peaks the size of three-story houses rise up from all over, with ferocious winds whipping up their faces. Here’s a taste.

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