M2O

Molokai 2 Oahu Stories: Part 2

Molokai 2 Oahu Stories: Part 2 - Gerry Lopez, Josh Riccio, Alice Henley, Jenn Lee, Mike Dilloughery

In part 2 of this multi-part series with stories and perspectives on the world’s gnarliest paddle board race, Molokai 2 Oahu (M2O). Five of my past guests and current legends in the water — Gerry Lopez, Josh Riccio, Alice Henley, Jenn Lee, Mike Dilloughery — all share their past experiences paddling in the Kaiwi Channel (The Channel of Bones) including seasickness, poor choice of lines, horrific sunburns, dealing with mental fatigue, logistical nightmares, and much more.

Gerry Lopez podcast stories from M2O is available here.

If you enjoy this story compilation I’d be stoked if you gave a nice rating of This Ocean Life in your podcast app or even better stop using plastics whenever possible so we can keep them out of the environment and out of the stomachs of our favorite ocean critters. Thanks!

Episode 80: Hunter Pflueger — Molokai 2 Oahu stories

Hunter Pflueger -- Molokai 2 Oahu Stories

In the continuing series around the unofficial world championships of padde board racing, Molokai 2 Oahu (M2O), we speak with Hunter Pflueger on his past years in the Kaiwi Channel. Hunter takes us from his first relay team as a 13-year old grom up to today where he is focused on challenging to win the prone stock division. Hunter shares his stories of training for the event, persevering through the various areas of the channel, pushing through the mental and physical challenges paddlers face in this heavy 32-mile stretch of water. We hear of intense paddle battles with other racers, bumping rails across the channel, and epic finishes. Hunter provides a very humble and gracious perspective on the event, the paddle community, and his own family for providing strong support for him throughout the years. 

Thanks for sharing Hunter’s M2O stories with us. Be sure to check out photos and videos of Hunter on Instagram.

Episode 76: Steve Shlens — Molokai 2 Oahu stories

Steve Shlens Part 2: Molokai to Oahu paddle stories

In this podcast episode we chat again with Steve Shlens talking about the seven Molokai 2 Oahu races he’s competed in. Steve shares stories from his first time in the Kaiwi Channel and the hard learning curve everyone faces around travel, logistics, and paddling the race. We hear about Steve being lost in the Channel for 3+ hours when his escort boat was unable to locate him after the start plus great perspective on the mental challenges the race delivers and Steve’s tactics for overcoming them. Steve relates stories of sinking boats, fixing large holes in his paddle board before the race, working with boat captains, and the overall amazing camaraderie of this very special event. Whether you’ve done M2O or are considering the attempt, there is plenty of great stories and perspective from Steve to enjoy.

Thanks for sharing Steve’s M2O stories with us. Be sure to check out photos and videos of Steve on Instagram. You can hear Steve’s Part 1 episode here.

This Ocean Life Podcast Steve Shlens M2O

Gerry Lopez: Molokai 2 Oahu Stories

Gerry Lopez -- Molokai 2 Oahu paddle stories

In this continuation of our series of Molokai 2 Oahu paddle board race stories, we hear from the legend Gerry Lopez on his time in the Kaiwi Channel. Gerry takes us through the years he competed in the M2O event on relay teams, sharing tales of big seas, epic paddle battles to the finish, choosing the wrong line, and more. We hear Gerry’s perspective on the challenging conditions that the Kaiwi Channel can provide, his respect for that water, and some neat history on the M2O event and the people who have been involved with keeping the tradition alive. Photo credit: Bernie Baker.

To learn more about the Molokai 2 Oahu event see their website at http://www.molokai2oahu.com/

This Ocean Life Podcast M2O Starting Line

Episode 50: Mick Di Betta

Mick Di Betta - Lifeguard, Ocean Athlete Trainer, Molokai to Oahu Legend

In Episode 50 (50!?) we speak with one of my favorite legends in the board paddling world, Mick Di Betta. Mick takes us through his amazing life of growing up in the waters of Gold Coast with heavy focus on surf lifesaving, surfing, and competitive sports. We hear of Mick developing a strong connection with the Hawaiian ocean community, creating his very first paddling training program, and winning the inaugural Molokai 2 Oahu (M20) race in 1997. Mick shares his perspective on his first time in the Kaiwi Channel and paddling in the M2O event for over 22 years since while training many of the top competitors. We get some great insight into Mick’s approach to performance training and the impact he made to SUP board design. Plus so much more from this board paddling legend…

Thanks to Chris Aguilar for the photo!

Thanks for sharing Mike’s ocean life with us. You can find pictures and video of him on Instagram and Facebook pages. Also learn more about how you can benefit from Mick’s training program on his JustPaddling.com website.

This Ocean Life Podcast Mick Di Betta

Episode 32: Jeff Denholm

Jeff Denholm and True Grit

In Episode 32 we speak with Jeff Denholm, an inspiring man of the water who moved beyond the loss of his arm to push himself further than ever in the ocean and life. Jeff shares his story of humble roots in the waters of the US East Coast, finding his passion for raw, heavy ocean off Alaska, and the harrowing tale of losing his arm at sea. We hear of Jeff’s focus on surfing and prone board paddling while developing new prosthetic technology that allow him to continue to push his limits in the ocean. Jeff shares an inspiring perspective on helping to build a more sustainable world through his work with Save The Waves, Patagonia, and his own company developing environmentally friendly flame retardant. 

Thanks for sharing Jeff’s ocean life with us. You can find pictures and video of him on Instagram and Facebook pages. 

This Ocean Life Podcast Jeff Denholm

Episode 25: Leane Horton

Leane Horton and Changing the Tides

In Episode 25 we speak with Leane Horton, an amazing woman who has built an incredibly rich life in the ocean. Leane shares her stories of competitive paddleboarding in Molokai 2 Oahu (5x) and as a member of Team Hawai’i in the ISA World Championships (3x). Leane recounts her tales of buying sailboat Valkyrie with her husband and sailing from Mexico to French Polynesia where she makes repeat trips to explore each year. As a co-founder of the Changing Tides Foundation, Leane also provides perspective on giving back to the locations and people we visit on our travels and empowering women to participate fully in their own ocean lives.

Leane Horton This Ocean Life podcast

Episode 18: Alban Cornic

Alban Cornic and the Rugged Brittany Coast

In Episode 18 we speak with Alban Cornic, an ocean man from the rugged Brittany Coast of France. Alban shares stories finding his passion for paddling on the Maliko Coast of Maui and quickly becoming a strong competitior in some of the most challenging paddleboard races in the world such as M2O, Catalina Classic, and Davenport Downwinder. Alban shares his perspective on windsurfing, kitesurfing, surfing, paddling, and the rugged ocean culture of Brittany and strong sense of community within the world of paddle boarding.

Alban Cornic This Ocean Life Podcast

Episode 16: Jenn Lee

Jenn Lee and Crossing the Molokai Channel 3X on 3 Different Craft

In Episode 16 we speak with Jennifer Lee an amazing woman of the water who accomplished the incredible feat of crossing the 32-mile Molokai Channel solo 3 times on 3 different water craft in 1 year. As a strong SUP and 6-person outrigger canoe competitor Jenn shares her stories of developing skill on the ocean canoe (OC1) and surf ski, working through the challenges of racing across the Molokai Channel 3 times within a short few months, and her humble approach to pushing her own limits of endurance. Jenn’s energy and perspective is amazing and anybody pushing their own limits in the ocean will be inspired.

Jenn Lee This Ocean Life Podcast

Episode 15: Zach Wormhoudt

Zach Wormhoudt and Going Big Because You Love To

In Episode #15 of This Ocean Life podcast we speak with Zach Wormhoudt, a man who has spent multiple decades as a big wave surfer, paddle boarder, and fisherman in the cold waters of Northern California. Zach has surfed in every contest held at Mavericks and shares his experience of surfing that world-famous break and being part of the progression of big wave surfing around the world. Zach also relates on prone paddling, fishing, and pursuing a life in the ocean based on pure enjoyment.

Zach Wormhoudt This Ocean Life Podcast