TOOLS OF THE TRADE | JULIEN FILLION’S HAWAII QUIVER

words by Julien Fillion photo by William Pollock

Maui between the month of December and March offers an enormous variety of conditions. Each year I spend several weeks soaking in every possible condition the Pacific throws at us! Here’s a list of what sits in the back of my truck on a regular day in Maui.

A. My kite of choice for Maui is the Liquid Force Wow. We actually designed the first Wow in Maui several years ago. The Wow has one of the smallest diameter leading edges in the whole kite industry. The small LE diameter helps the kite to fly several degrees at the edge of the wind window, allowing more freedom during top turns and roundhouse surfing manoeuvres.

B. The Mission Control V3 bar from LF.
I ride both 23 meter and 20 meter lines depending on the spot. I prefer 20 meter in wave riding, the kite is slightly more respon-sive. Although some wind-shadowed spots in Maui require longer line setups, therefore the two line length setup.
C. The MOD Harness from LF, simply one of the most comfortable harnesses out there. I have a slightly compressed disk in my lower back, I can’t ride a hard shell, that’s why a soft and comfy harness is my pick.
D. I know right, a vest? Why would I need a vest? Well, you know what? Maui’s waves get massive! When I ride massive outer reef sessions, I always wear a vest in case I have to swim back to shore. You never need a vest, until you need it!
E. Patagonia R1 shorty long sleeve. I know it’s going to sound weird, but Maui is cold. This long sleeve shorty is my go-to kitesurf-ing suit on the Maui North Shore.
F. Patagonia R1 shorty long johns. This is my go to surfing suit for Maui; you always workout more surfing then kitesurfing.
G. Liquid Force Messenger 4.8. This board is tiny, light and nimble. I ride it strapless when the conditions are perfect and the surf is smaller. It’s a standard EPS/fibre-glass/carbon construction.
H. This board is an FCD Fark that Fletcher Chiounard shaped for me. It has inserts
for footstraps, I use this board when Maui gets choppy and/or the waves get much bigger. This is my third Fark from Fletcher Chiounard. This board is amazing, and yes it’s pink!
I. I always keep a twintip in Maui. Some days can be very windy with barely any waves. This year I’ve been riding the Moon Patrol from LF; it’s a directional twin you can ride switch. It’s an amazing carving board.
J. I love foiling. I would foil all day and every day if I could. I usually kite with a 36-inch mast and I prone surf foil with a 24 or 30-inch mast. I’ve been prone surfing a lot this year, I love it. I also suffered an injury in OBX this year where I got the wing in the face. Twelve stitches later, it reminds me how crucial to baby step when learning to foil surf.
K. Wings, lots of wings! We are developing so many wings at LF, it’s important to do a daily comparison and be in tune with their performance and know in which field they perform best.
L. ( NOT SHOWN ) This is the FS1, LF’s first prone surfboard. It’s big, floaty and easy to learn on. It’s also a great strapless kite foil board if needed.
M. Here are two samples of the ORB, LF’s high-performance kite foil board. This is
a foil-specific kiteboard. It’s light, easy to travel with and feels amazing under your feet. This is basically the only foilboard I kite with. I would suggest this board to any novice who’s already been through the foil learning curve.
N. I’ve always loved standup surfing. I was part of the early adopter of the standup paddleboard several years ago and it remains a love at first sight for me. This is a beautiful 10-foot wooden board made by a Canadian company call Beau Lake, for the mellow, end-of-the-day longboard type waves, when the wind is completely gone.
O. This is an 8-foot mini longboard called the Malibu, also from Beau Lake. I love this board, not only for surfing but also for kitesurfing. On light wind days, this board is amazing when teamed with a 12 meter. I’ve had memorable soul searching sessions kitesurfing with this board.
P. A Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu kimono, probably my favourite piece of equipment here. I’ve been training in Jiu-Jitsu for three years and I’m deeply in love with the sport. It’s such amazing cross-training.
Q. It rains a lot in Maui, there is a reason why the island icon is a rainbow. This is a drybag from Patagonia, a simple roll-top waterproof bag, an absolute must for Maui, where it rains approximately eight times a day during the winter months.
R. Patagonia boardshorts; strong, light, flexible. Enough said!