Sunday, February 12, 2012

2 - 3 day windsurf tours

ok, it's been a while but adrian's been busy riding bikes in france, preparing his boat to sail across the atlantic, chasing girls and having fun whilst I've been a little preoccupied with work, kids and surfing.

Michael from Drift Media has been working on a small doco of our trip in fiji which has inspired us to dust off the gear and start planning another expedition.

To get us back on track we're planning a short overnight trip in the local area on the weekend of March 3rd & 4th 2012.

If you're interested in joining us send us an email or post your details and we'll make contact with you.

To make it easier we plan on finding accomm (b&b, cabin in caravan park etc) but you'll need a longboard and reliable rig of some description and be self sufficient, i.e. sufficient emergency food and water for min 2 nights camping and be competent enough to sail in all directions in winds up to 25 knots for 5 - 6 hrs per day.

below are a few options we're considering.

westernport bay, inc french island, overnight phillip island, approx 130 + km

Port Welshpool - Sandy Point, overnight at tidal river, approx 110km

Lake Wellington - Lakes Entrance, overnight in Loch Sport, approx 80km

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Finally some pictures!

Apologies everyone for the slow uploading of images. We had some technical difficulties and a few other issues with our video footage but that's all sorted out and will have more to add soon.

On the last night of the trip we met up with photographer Meg Back on Bounty Island.

Meg did a great job making us look way cooler than we are. The pics show how beautiful fiji is and how how light the wind really was much of the time.

We were hoping for a good breeze the following morning for the shoot but it didn't pick up until Meg was back on a boat heading off to her island home. Lucky girl.

We sailed back to the mainland that day on a starboard reach in approx 15 knots!

More action pics from adrian's camera to come soon along with video footage so stay tuned.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Communications re-established

Apologies for the radio silence, but once we left Mana island and headed north, we have not had access to the internet. After a week of spending many hours at sea in frustratingly light winds (aftermath of the Cyclone Thomas), we finally got back to Nadi in time for our flight back to Melbourne on Friday evening. The trade winds did not blow at all until our final day.

Anxious days were spent at our most northerly point, Monuriki, as we were marooned due to lack of wind. We were eventually forced to set sail at sunrise each day, where we could catch a few knots of wind before the sea would turn to glass by 0930 hrs.
This meant taking our chances of a night at sea, should we be caught inbetween destinations if the wind were not to return that day.

However, the time spent stuck on islands waiting for the slightest breath of wind allowed us to explore and snorkel. Matt caught a Walu fish (looks a bit like a tuna) which we shared with a family in a village, after the chief had given them instructions to look after us for the night. We also spent our time exploring the reefs, and on one occasion searching with the waterproof video camera for a shark (much larger than the reef sharks we had seen) that Matt had previously spotted whilst snorkeling in the early hours.

We got used to the constant onslaught of crabs trying to get into our sleeping arrangements, until we modified the mosquito net into a 'crab net'. However, despite it's clear improvements in keeping them out, it also stopped them getting out once they had got in!

The final night was spent on Bounty Island, where we spent the evening and folowing morning doing a pre-arranged photoshoot with Meg, a commercial photographer from New Zealand. We then enjoyed for the first time a consistant 8 to 14 knot tradewind that blew us back to Nadi Bay and our flights.

Watch this spot for a few shots of the trip once I've got them downloaded.......

Sunday, March 21, 2010

To Tom Hanks Island

Progress has been slow the past 4 days. Very light winds left behind from cyclone Thomas has left us floating around at sea for hours and even puling ut the backup paddles on one occasion.

We have made our way to Mana Island and after arriving finally got some decent breeze and sailed around for 2 hours just for fun and to remember what it's like to plane.

So today we are trying to get to Monoriki Island (Tom Hanks Island) via another island to broker a deal with the chief which will no doubt involve passing a few fiji $.

We've had rain on the last 3 nights so hoping for a dry evening for a change.

Monday, March 15, 2010

On a wing and a prayer

Successfully checking in all the gear (with no, or limited, hit to the wallet) is one very stressful leg of the journey for the adventure traveler.

One can pray for divine intervention, one can hope, one can take matters in to his own hands. If you've got some hot tips for our return trip please let us know. At $8 per kg it's expensive, but better than $50kg which was quoted!

(Pic: mat and Adrian at Melbourne airport ready for check in).

One mandatory item for the kit?

In the event there's no 'join me for a meal' offer from a local inhabitant, I'd have thought 100kilos of excess luggage aught to be more than enough to be self sufficient....and some.

But you tell us. If you were to carry just one item in your kit to be sure you got fed and were well rested for the next day of windsurf touring, what would you take?
(pic: mat & adrian ready for airport drop off)


Stranded with Pommie 'Fat'packers

Cyclone Thomas , a category 3 to 4 (out of 5) cyclone is about to hit us. In the calm winds we have this morning, Matt and I, in frustration, were keen to make a dash for it to get to Mololo, the first major island from Nadi, before the cyclone hits us. However, should we find ourselves becalmed ahead of the storm, we could could be caught and then find ourselves in serious trouble, especially if we have a mast failure. We have therefore elected to postpone our launch until Tuesday morning, when according to the computer generated cyclone prediction models that we are following, the storm will be moving south and away from us. Nadi is currently under curfew, where all businesses are being shut down to weather the storm. So its another night enjoying the charms of noisy drunken pommie backpackers.

Below you can see our passage plan as we head north from Mololo island. The second image below shows the deserted island of Monoriki (made famous in Tom Hanks movie 'Castaway'). We aim to spend our second night on it, where Matt promises me he will catch us fresh fish, and cook it. Poms are banned from going anywhere near the galley!