During its second year, the XXL Awards began the process of diversifying, adding categories for Paddle-In and Best Overall Performance, but was still focused on the North Pacific Ocean during the winter season. And the seas did not disappoint, with XXL nominees culled from a pair of massive days at Maui's Jaws and Northern California?s Maverick's. And it was at Maverick's -- on the famed "100-foot" Wednesday -- where Brazilan Carlos Burle bounced down a spooky, dark face to claim the winning wave just before the break was buried alive by the biggest swell of the modern era. Burle took home $50,000 and a new Nissan SUV for his wave, measured at 68 feet on the face.
Hawaii was still well represented, as Waimea Bay hosted Paul "Antman" Paterson's biggest paddle in wave. Mike Parsons became the first recipient of the Jay Moriarity Performance Award, given in the name of the popular Santa Cruz surfer (and previous XXL finalist) who had recently passed away in a diving accident.
Winning photo - Frank Quirarte