A mini Raid to Rotoroa Island

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A few weeks ago five adventurous rowers including two visitors from Wellington set off on a weekend jaunt, destination Rotoroa island. Formerly an alcohol rehabilitation centre run by the Salvation army, Rotoroa is now a park and wildlife sanctuary with the bonus of having excellent accommodation available. The Team left Kawakawa bay and because the weather was so fantastic decided to row up the outside of Chamberlins island also known as Ponui island arriving at the accommodation mid afternoon.

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We joined them late Friday night having motored all the way from Auckland in a flat calm, perfect for rowing not so for yachts!

Saturday we joined them for a row around Ponui island, yep chasing along behind in our little nine foot plywood tender, Thankfully the St Ayles guys were in a relaxed mode and even offered us a tow for part of it!

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A great weekend excursion and loads of fun tagging along in the dinghy, Just goes to show you don’t need much boat to have fun.

TN17 and the Return Raid Tassie 2017

Return Raid route v2

Well its seems like ages ago and yes Ive been a bit slack in updating these pages so stand by for a flurry of posts!

Back in February we set off for Tasmania and the mighty Living Boat Trust, marvelous bunch of like minded souls living in a little known corner of the world that apart from the weather is quite possibly boating paradise. We had come to participate in the Return Raid part of the Tawe Nunnugah. Its a bi-annual small boat adventure returning the boats from the Hobart Wooden boat festival back to Franklin, 3 nights four days of sailing, rowing, camping and generally having a great old time with wonderful friends.

R2AK starts tonight

The Race to Alaska 750nm no motors, no support, non stop to Alaska.

This has to be one of the toughest small boat adventures on the planet, make sure you follow all the action on their website,

 

2016 Race Updates

 

Queens Birthday Mini Raid

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With a stunning forecast for Queens Birthday weekend, 5 crazy friends and fellow St Ayles skiff enthusiasts set off from Orakei on a mission.

The Challenge, Can 5 people pack enough gear into a St Ayles for a weekends camping and still row it efficiently and safely.

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Answer: You Bet !

And in fact its such an amazing boat that it swallowed all our gear and rowed just like it normally does, cruising speed 4 knots, safe and dry and as well behaved as ever.

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The stunning Home Bay Motutapu island was the destination, total distance 8nm, rowing time 2 hours exactly plus an hour drinking tea and chewing the fat on Browns island along the way.

After a great afternoon setting up camp and a very enjoyable meal, (no dehydrated food here!) We settled into a rather chilly but quite comfortable night ashore.

Sunday saw us into the next wee mission, a short 2nm row to Waiheke island for an icecream.

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Followed by another 2nm row to Motuihe island, no ice creams here but a cup of tea out of the trusty thermos and a snooze in the afternoon sun did the trick.

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You guessed it, followed by a 2nm row back to Home bay. More good food and wine another chilly sleep and a stunning sunrise.

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Before setting off on the return home journey of another 8nm. We had the tide against us on the way home but with a forecast of building easterly winds thought it best not wait for the tide, Approx 3 hours rowing to get home and we were spied departing Browns island by our roving reporter from St Helliers.

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What a fantastic weekend, good company, great food, some fantastic rowing, stunning weather. There’s something quite special about getting away for the weekend under your own steam, no engines no sails just good mates some oars, an awesome boat and our beautiful country we call home….

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Theres already talk of the next one…