Surfers traverse Hawaii to promote autism film
NAWILIWILI, Hawaii -- Surfers Laird Hamilton and Dave Kalama completed their 430-mile crossing of the state with a 26-mile bicycle ride from Nawiliwili to the Kilauea Lighthouse in Kauai.
Their weeklong land and water journey was undertaken to promote a documentary film on autism made by cinematographer Don King. "Beautiful Son" is about King's autistic 6-year-old son, Beau.
Hamilton and Kalama agreed the hardest part of the trek was standup surfing 78 miles between Oahu and Kauai. It took about 19 hours.
"It's the hardest thing I've ever done, and I won't forget this anytime soon," Kalama said. "It was a serious gut check. I'm so glad to be on land right now."
The two encountered rain squalls that were so heavy at times that they had to paddle on their stomachs to keep their balance. The heaviest showers hit around 2 a.m., reducing visibility to near zero.
"It makes you feel very small," Hamilton said. "It's very humbling."
Hamilton and Kalama began the trip Oct. 4 at South Point. They biked across land and used extra-long paddles for standup surfing between the islands.
King, who works on the ABC series "Lost," said he hopes the effort by Hamilton and Kalama will raise $40,000 to distribute the documentary to a wider audience.
Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press
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