Oahu’s Leeward Shore – the westernmost area of Oahu – is rarely visited by vacationers, even though it’s truly beautiful. (It was used for principal filming of the 1965 movie “Hawaii.”) It’s a long drive, and there aren’t many attractions apart from the beaches themselves. The loveliest among those beaches is the isolated Makua Beach, with its long crescent of white sand fronting a deep, wide valley that’s undeveloped and uninhabited – the only coastal valley on the island without housing or development projects. Local surfers don’t go there often because the surf is unpredictable, and when the surf’s up, it’s dangerous.

While the beach is isolated, it can’t exactly be called “unspoiled.” There’s a large rock at the shoreline where adventurous surfers used to gather, peer out at the ocean and pray to the kahuna of sun, sand, and surf for waves they could handle. The term “Pray for surf” became part of the youth lexicon, and surfers used it as a bidding when they parted at night. One morning in the mid-1960s, early arrivals at the beach discovered some garish, whimsical graffiti painted on one side of the rock. It read PRAY FOR SEX. The artist was never identified.

Now, some 40 years later, the words remain, slightly weathered but unaffected by any attempts to remove them. The rock is called the “Pray for Sex” rock and Makua Beach often is referred to as “Pray for Sex Beach.”

So if you hear that characterization while you’re on Oahu, you now know where it came from and don’t need to seek it out while you’re here.

Unless you’re really horny.


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