Wednesday, 2 January 2008

Finished for now

With mixed forecasts, talk of the train derailing and the road in poor condition from Manakara we decided to finish our first half of the expedition in Manajary.  We are just under half way around Madagascar and will be returing to finish our circumnavigation next year.  Our journey back to the capital with the kayaks has gone smoothly so far.  The kayaks were carefully tied to the roof of a taxi we arranged to get us to Madagascars second city, Fianarantsoa.  The 5 hour journey took us past pristine rain forest and raging rivers.  We hope to leave the kayaks at the hotel and take time to explore the interior of the country before we fly back on the 10th.  The last week of paddling along the beach went smoothly.  The surf was always there but was not too big to land and launch through.  The winds stayed on our tail and we spent around 9 hours a day covering good distance.  We only landed at the end of the day to limit the number of times we had to tackle the surf.  On the whole the expedition has gone amazingly well and we have seen so many spectacular places and met so many friendly people.  We are both very much looking forward to the rest of the journey.  On our return we will upload a gallery and a report on the expedition.  Thanks to everyone for their support.
Simon and Phil

Tuesday, 1 January 2008

madagascar update
Had a call from Simon a couple of days ago but haven't been able to get to a computer till now. All's good with both of them and they are making sound progress. They only have 150 KM to their get out and have about a week to get there, so as long as they have no bad weather between now and then we should be seeing them back home by mid January.
Happy New Year everyone:)

Friday, 28 December 2007

New Update
Had a trip report fom Simon yesterday to say that they had made it as far as a town called Mahanoro (see map). Good paddling conditions are enabling the guys to make better progress and with a good forecast for tomorrow they hope to cover more distance. The surf is running at about four and a half feet and things are looking good. Simon and Phil will be returning to the UK on or around the 10 January, travel logistics mean that if they go too far south they will have trouble getting back to the countries main airport.

Tuesday, 25 December 2007

Just recieved an update from Phil to say that they had a lay in this morning, when they got up it was very windy so they decided to have the day off and celebrate xmas with a tin of raviolli and Ferrero Rochet (i think thats spelt right).
Xmas Update

Phil called yesterday to say that they had made good progress, with strong following winds surfing them along. They ended the day in a place called Vatomandry, managing a good 35 kilometers in seven hours of paddling.
Merry Christmas!!

Sunday, 23 December 2007

Up Date
Had an update from Phil today, there was so much interferance that I couldnt make out what was being said fully. I did understand that they were making good progress with tail winds, he sounded happy so alls well I believe.

Friday, 21 December 2007

The port of Tamatave (Bateau Ivre)

Its great to have made it to Tamatave.  It is the largest port in Madagascar and our last major resupply point for a while.  It also signifies the start of the long sandy straight beach all the way to the south.  We fortunatly have a reasonable forecast to get us started tommorrow.  The past few weekes have taken us to some amazing remote parts of rural Madagascar.  We have stopped in villages where they dont see tourists and dont speak french.  The Coast has been diverse with coral reefs, sandy beaches, crossings and cliffy headlands.  Behind it all has been a constant headwind that has finally decided to turn into a tail wind to help push us on our way.  Lets hope it stays. 
We have been able to update the site with photos due to the kindness of the owner of the resteraunt Le Bateau Ivre.  He has let us keep the kayaks under the resteraunt to save us carrying them into our hotel room in town!  We passed our first bouy today and proberbly our last.  We shopped for the festive period today and bought an extra tin of raviolli and 6 ferrero rochee (excuse spelling).
Thanks to Jeff for his hard work on the updates and to Karel for his excelent forecasts, keep the northerly winds coming.
Happy Christmas Simon and Phil