How Did Cloud Nine Get Its Name?!

Cloud 9 Chocolate Bar

December 10, 2010 · 1 comment

Everything in Siargao is all about one thing… Cloud Nine! Once a sleepy little island, secret among a few – but now its out in the sun! Cloud 9 is known worldwide as one of the best surfing breaks in the entire Philippines. Because of that, it has drawn thousands of repeat visitors to the island and has a reputation for being a cheap destination for surfers.

There are different stories as to why cloud nine has its name. Some locals believe that it has something to do with the hollowed thick tube of perfect 9 wave formation. But most people believe that Cloud 9 was originally called Boyum’s after surf explorer Mike Boyum who spent time on Siargao Island in the late 1980′s and died after a lengthy fast. It never got its name until surf photographer John Callahan christened it in 1992.

When Callahan visited Siargao Island with Taylor Knox and Evan Slater, and together with Kevin Davidson, there was little to do other than wake up early and surf as much as possible. The highlight of their limited activity was to stroll into town after lunch to have a warm Coke and a cloud 9 chocolate bar. Callahan named the wave cloud 9 as it was almost as good as a chocolate bar.

There are several other waves and secret spots on Siargao, but Cloud 9 has received more hype than any other wave in the area. Some folks nickname it Crowd 9 since it is the only wave in the area that is easy to get to without a boat.

How Cloud Nine got its name may be questionable, but even so the name is now known worldwide – It’s safe to safe that more people will have heard of the Cloud Nine wave than Siargao Island, crazy!

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

John Seaton Callahan April 25, 2011 at 2:01 PM

Yes, that’s basically true. I named the wave “Cloud 9″ after the chocolate bars, as we ate a lot of them on our first trip in 1992. Not much else to do other than surf yourself silly.

We saw Mike Boyums cottage on the beach. At the time, it was the only structure on the beach in front of the wave. Nothing else at all. We asked our boatman who lived there and he said “Max Walker – American. But he died” We said “He died? Why did he die?” and the boatman said “He did not want to live, so he died”. We had no idea at the time who Max Walker was.

“Max Walker” was the alias Mike Boyum was using after he left Hawaii. As he arrived on Siargao in December and passed in April; the rainy season, it is questionable how much surfing he actually did, as the last 44 days of his life were spent in a fast to the death.

Who knows? No one has ever come forward who visited with Mike on Siargao during this period of his life, so it will likely remain a mystery.

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