An epic sailing adventure of surfing, skateboarding, kiteboarding, and exploration aboard the “Natural Mystic” header image 2

Rice and Beans to Baguettes, Voilà!

August 25th, 2008 · 22 Comments

Loaded with fruit for the passageFrenzy gripped the crew of the “Natural Mystic”, everyone was doing their part, chore, task, girl. Getting her prepped and ready for the 3,000 plus nautical mile passage to the Marquesas and our entry into magical French Polynesia. We shot around town like sailors possessed by Davey Jones, doing everything we needed to, in order to stay out his locker. Flying around town, toting our hand held VHF radios, jabbering about this or that, picking up this or tons of fruit and veggies, enough to last us up to 21 days at sea, what we hope would be the longest the passage should take. Our last night with Umberto Stocking up on the most bountiful and cheapest groceries and supplies we would probably see in a long time. And always trying to make an evening appearance at The Chicken Cart for a tasty dinner and Polo’s Bar to see the local crew and say our never ending sting of good byes and thank yous.

Tasty wave at the peak Lets not forget a few last minute, tasty waves. Fun waves still to be had at the peak and Kahlil’s and my mysto session at a lava boulder slab, where the wave jacked straight up out of deep ocean, intensified by the ripping current, only to break on a boiling, churning lava shelf just feet from a boulder strewn shoreline. We each grabbed one scary wave, then spent the rest of the set trying to escape getting pulverized into the rocks, then simultaneously decided it was just a bit too mysto a spot for us.

Busting a 4 set

Just to make sure our legs would still work when we arrived, we had to have one last skateboard, thrash session, hitting all the skate spots. Stair sets, gaps, ledges, taco bowls and friendly police are all there for you skating enjoyment. One of the best gaps is right next to the Port Captain’s office and they could care less you are skating on their doorstep and even come out and watch. The Galapagos kids are great too and watch and cheer enthusiastically wherever you are skating, but the fun did have to come to an end eventually.Port Capitan Gap So, with bleary eyes, bellies still full of the biggest pizzas ever (monster truck tire size) from Resturante Calypso the night before and second thoughts about maybe we should have taken our women with us, for our coming weeks at sea and the journey though the beautiful pacific islands. We weighed anchor at 6am Thursday morning, and headed out of the niche we carved for ourselves in San Christobal.

Leaving the Galapagos Behind It was perfect breeze right off the bat, 12 knots, an ideal port tack up wind angle, with zero seas and we were instantly blasting along making a smooth 8 knots. We started taking our turns on watch and soon after fighting through the calm lee of Isla Floreana, we’re back on track and leaving Isla Santa Cruz in our wake and lastly Isla Isabela. At dusk I see a large buoy with boat attached to it just sitting there floating 10 miles past Isla Isabela and a Dorado is blasting past it, chasing a school of Bonita. Its body is sky blue with bright blue spots, as it leaps repeatedly out of the water after its prey. It heads past our boat, crosses our wake and boom a fishing line starts spinning away and its fish on. The Dorado had transformed into its incredible golden/green spotted color as its landed and within minutes a Yellowfin tuna follows. The sea is rich with life here and the fishing boat tied up to the buoy was a harbinger of what was to come.

First Dorado we caught We eat a hardy dinner of seafood pasta with both, Dorado and Yelowfin tuna and are marveling at the stars and chewing our cud when Ben tells me he hears whales through the hulls. I’m like OK whatever, but notice something following us just off our rear quarter. Its dolphins, no its something else. I grab the searchlight and it’s a buoy, aiming the beam into the water and there it is. A fisherman’s long line stuck on our daggerboards. For those of you who don’t know what a long line is, let me explain. Fishing boats steam up current, deploying a thick nylon line with a buoys on it every so often and thick, 400-lb. test monofilament with giant baited hooks woven into it every 10 feet. These lines can stretch for upwards of 30 miles. When they are finished laying it out, the fishing boats head back to the beginning and reel in the line and whatever indiscriminate fish they might have caught, that are basically now lifeless.

Yellowfin Tuna We lift up the dagger boards, trying to clear the line and all that succeeds in doing is snagging it further aft it in our propellers and the skegs of our boat. I duct tape a knife to a carbon windsurf mast I have on board and cut the line off on both side of the boat, so at least were not dragging miles of line anymore and try unsuccessfully to free the remainder from the safety of our boat. That didn’t work and we can’t start our engines to back down, so at 11pm on a dark night, 20 miles from any land, we take down all our sails, and I’m putting on my swim fins and mask, armed with a knife and flashlight and tethered by the end of our screetcher sheet tied with a bowline around my waist. We’re basically dead in the water, but my heart is still racing as I plunge into the inky black sea. Avoiding the dangling hooks, I see the first line, its wedged in the gap between the boot of the skeg and the skeg. I dive down and with some tugging its free. I contemplate getting back on the boat and diving back in from the other side, but instead just swim over to the other side and see the line has got into the cracks of the prop. A couple of slashes with the knife and some tugging and the second line is clear. I’m back on the boat in a flash, my heart is beating out of my chest, but we’re all clear. We hoist the sails back up and were moving again.

Then a short bit later, Ben’s “whale noise” is back and I’m thinking that’s no whale, it’s the sound of long lines humming on our daggerboards. A shine of the flashlight and there is another one. This time I keep the daggerboards down and after a few swipes of the makeshift pole knife, succeed in cutting it. Its pulled free on both side of the boat and another midnight swim is gladly avoided. This process happens three more times for a grand total of five throughout the night and in the morning we all feel proud of ourselves for getting through the ensnaring web of long lines and are hopeful we might have saved a couple of innocent fishes lives that eventful night. Making it just a wee bit harder for the fishermen to indiscriminately rape the sea.

Becalmed in the morningThe winds turned extremely light to nonexistent after the long line fiasco and in the early morning of day two we turn on the engines and hope we are finally away from the long lines now being over 100 NM away from the Galapagos. Day breaks, crystal clear and still no wind, just a sheet glass sea stretching seemingly forever. We power for the next 24 hours, keeping our RPMs low, trying to conserve fuel and making about 6 knots. We carry about 1000 miles worth of diesel, not enough to make it the whole way. We don’t have our fishing lines out as we still have enough fish for dinner and want only what we can eat, so far it has been slower going than we expected and at our current rate its looking like the passage might take us all of our maximum expected three weeks.

Our upgraded fishing tackle I’m up on watch, its 8am, day 3, the sun’s out, the weather pleasant , a steady light breeze is blowing, our sails are back out and so are the fishing lines, as the fridge is now empty. After loosing some big fish in the past I dialed out the fishing tackle on the “Natty M”. Twin heavy rods, with solid tackle and two thin, but strong (to minimize drag) hand lines with heavy gear to tow giant creatures to death or just winch them in with a boat winch. When BAM, the lines had been out scarcely five minutes and its fish on. Reeling in a gorgeous Dorado, then anther and then another. Three fish onboard in quick succession and I’m quickly trying to pull in all our lines, as we have caught plenty and just as the last line is almost in, WHAM! We hook one more, for a grand total of four robust Dorado and I spend the rest of the morning filleting fish, on the fish fillet factory that is the starboard transom.

First Dorado of the morning We make some epic civeche for lunch, and I concoct a great dinner of breaded, sautéed Dorado, and we are all in deep food comas, laying in our various comfy boat spots, watching the waxing , bright orange, ¾ moon light up the gentle sea directly behind us. Thus far the seas have been truly Pacific, but my heart is anything, but Pacific, its filled with wanderlust, excitement and ambition, as I have dreamt about crossing this vast ocean and all the adventure it has in store for us since I was just a young boy of 13.

Relaxing at Sunset Later that same evening, I come up from sleep, to my watch and see Diz who is looking for some baking soda for his upset stomach. Wait a second, soon as he said that I notice mine doesn’t feel so hot either. An hour later my tummy is friggin hurting and I’m doubled over the transom, just vomiting up massive amounts of the just hours earlier “great” dinner. I’m sure the ultra fresh fish was not the culprit, but I just wasn’t into the Mahi Mahi quite the same for a few days after that.Nothing but sea and clouds for ever The sheer vastness of this ocean astounds me. Everywhere I look and nothing about humanity in sight for days now, only ocean, ocean, ocean and more ocean. When you don’t see humanity for a while you start to question it. As you barrel along at 18 knots, with spray flying everywhere for days on end, you start to ponder questions like. What are my shrouds (they hold up the mast) really made of? They aren’t metal. What is really under that plastic cover supporting these tremendous loads and pressures and you put your faith completely, in something that is totally nonexistent in this part of the world.

Yet, there are friends everywhere you look, lending a helping hand and smiling with you. White horses trot along side of us, with white striding smiles, and we trot merrily along with them. Cheerful truly pacific smiles that have yet to be turned into galloping grins, that test our limits and make us work to stay on course. We are all able to enjoy our watches, and have plenty of time to read books and write in our journals on our off time, but this is all a bit relative as we are now use to jamming along on a broad reach, at a consistent 10 knots of boat speed, with frequent surfs into the high teens and twenties. Nights are the most sensational, as the full moon is at its crescendo mid-passage and our course has it rising directly behind us and setting dead ahead of us. Its like were sailing into a giant, mesmerizing, silver laser beam and it feels like pure magic, pure freedom, pure nature. I will never forget those magical nights, spent on that moonlit Pacific sea as long as I live, they are the single best moments I have ever experienced sailing in my entire life.

Other sea friends appear here and there and some like the flying fish are omnipresent. I have seen tons of flying fish in my sea travels thus far and one might think I would be so use to them by now, I would barely notice any more, but out here that’s impossible. Vast squadrons of hundreds them take flight off our bows nonstop, like Luftwaffe on WWII bombing raids. Poorly guided and with bad aim, we are often their targets and dodge and parry constantly to avoid direct hits, this last part applies 100% more to Kahlil as it has become apparently evident he is their No. 1 Mission Priority Target.

Whales are sighted every couple of days, some swimming gracefully close by for a little while and some breaching with tremendous splashes. One morning, as Kahlil and I were changing watch he had to quickly avoid a pod of 20 Pilot Whales who we were headed directly for us. Their giant black foreheads, resembling the business end of a battering ram and looking like they could do some serious damage if they scored a direct hit. We successfully maneuvered around them, they altered course and tried to swim along side, but we were just too fast and soon they were falling behind and out of sight.

The birds amaze me too. Galapagos Storm Petrels followed us the entire way to the Marquesas and there was never a day no matter how far we were from land where we didn’t see a bird. They spend years at sea only returning to land to nest and rear their young and they help to keep you company when no one is around.

I’m yelling “Shark fins off the port bow.” No, a mistake, gracefully beneath the sapphire sea a giant manta ray over 20 feet across glimmers like a jewel in a fairytale pond, tuning majestic circles just off our bow, its two massive wings sticking up out of the water, their black tips mimicking shark fins. This circle dance, appeared to create a whirlpool vortex in the sea, concentrating the plankton to be gobbled up, I surmise. Breaking its spiral and gracefully banking off our mid ship’s boat wave the manta heads out into the vastness from whence it appeared, to glimmer eternally for ungazing eyes.P Kiddy before Chundering

A few days later Kahlil takes me aside and informs me he wants to make an “Experimental dinner.” “Um? What is it?” I ask. Kahlil replies “In the Bolivian rainforest the natives there used plantains, mashed them up, mixed them with flour, maybe an egg or two, mixed in onions and peppers, fried it up like a fritter and maybe I’ll add some of the fish in there too.” Yea, what great idea the fish I barfed up! “Why don’t you check to see if its still any good” I say. Its not even dinner time and he’s in the fridge early checking out the fish, taking it out, smelling it and proclaiming “It’s not that bad.” Then the odiferous smell hits me from far across the salon, super fishy and smelling quite some days past its prime. There is fish out, so of course P Kiddy enters the scene, “MEEOOOO MEEEOOOOOOO!!!” “Now you’ve done it Kahlil you better give P some of it now.” I say. Kahlil serves him a generous helping and within minutes, I’m relaxing on the coach house roof, enjoying the afternoon, when the peace is abruptly broken. Kahlil is screaming, “P Kiddy is chundering all over the place.” The P is barfing the fish up everywhere. The fish is now even to Kahlil obviously bad and our little, furry canary of the sea played his part protecting the “Natty M” boys from just a little too “experimental” of a dinner.

While I’m on the topic of Kahlil’s cooking, which please understand is 97% great, but however there is still that 3%. We had some Ecuadorian yogurt on board and it ran out mid way through the passage. Kahlil said they use to take what was left in the old yogurt bottle mix it with some new milk, set it outside overnight and the next day, through the miracle of microbial action you have new yogurt. I remember making yogurt with my mom as a kid and we sterilized all the jars first so no bad bacteria would grow and was quite skeptical of the plan off the bat, basically figuring it was going to be a waist of a precious carton of milk and just am not into trying experimental fermented foods when your 1,500 nautical miles from any land and medical help if it does make you deathly ill. So, I gave him my blessing anyway and the next day its fermented, defiantly thicker, put in the fridge to chill and as I’m coming on for my evening watch Kahlil says “Oh yea, don’t try any of the yogurt. I think it might be bad.” He had tried some and it wasn’t exactly agreeing with him and hopefully he learned the lesson not to experiment with fermenting foods unless your maybe just a little closer to professional gastrointestinal help.Surfing Along Well the wind stayed basically perfect for the next week, 12 to 20 knots the seas were 6 feet or so and we just blasted along, easily banging out 250+ NM days for 7 days straight, with our screecher proudly flying off our bow sprit. “Natural Mystic” was surfing the waves all day and all night long and I didn’t even have an inkling of missing surfing, as we were doing it constantly just on a little bit bigger board. And what a rush it is to be in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, thousands of miles from any land, watching the knot meter hit 20’s, as sheets of water are just streaming off the bows and the entire boat is paining for minutes at a time. Then with about 800 miles left to go it started getting windier and some tropical squalls started roiling through with gusts into the low 40’s. We put the first reef in the main, replaced the screecher with the jib and were still surfing well into the high teens. The heavier weather lasted through the next couple of days and made watches a bit more interesting. As the squalls would hit the wind would progressively grow stronger and go aft, by about 70°, making us to head way up. Once in the squall the wind would lighten up forcing us to sail even higher to the apparent wind to keep the boat moving and then as you got nearly out of the squall, without much warning the wind would go way forward and increase in strength almost instantaneously. You had to be on top of you game and bear off fast to keep the boat from getting way overpowered and then once again your surfing away on the proper course and everything is business as usual until the next squall hits.

Blasting at SunsetWe survived this period of unsettled weather, with a little less sleep and maybe some simpler dinners, but just fine and then our (or my) one fuck up happened. It was my watch, about 400 miles to go, the sun was setting, fiery orange below the clear horizon, the wind was dropping, out of the 30’s, just in the teens now, and there were no more squalls to be seen anywhere. I decided to take the reef out of the main to get us back up to speed. We had not done much reefing off the wind as 80% of all our passages have been up wind thus far. I’m raising the main back up and as it is most of the way out, its rubbing against our swept back shrouds, as there is no backstay and the shrouds perform both functions. The main is almost to the top and then it gets tough to go any further. Its always hard to get the last couple of inches of halyard tension, especially when your main is as big as ours and loaded up downwind. The main sail is attached to the mast by a Harken Bat Car System, which is cars with roller bearings on a track, making it possible to pull a sail up and down under load. So, to take the load out of the main, I head into the wind, luffing the sail and have Ben on the halyard grinding, he gets a couple more turns and then it just will not go anymore and it just needed another couple short inches. Right then I see the halyard slack a little and I give it one more little grind on the winch and then a sickening, giant pop is heard. Ben and I just stare at each other for a second, completely frozen, as it sounds like fiberglass is cracking and splitting all around us and our mast and its going to fall over any second. I’m thinking “Oh my god now I’ve done it” and then it stops. I quickly put the main back to the first reef point and figure out what happened. The mast track is held into the mast with screws and one of the very top ones had backed out after 11 days of hard sailing, preventing the car from going over it and causing the car to explode, as it was overloaded against it. The cracking fiberglass sound was the ball bearings raining down from 80 ft. above and bouncing off the coach house roof and the pop was the mast track being pulled out from the mast. So, now we were forced to sail the rest of the passage with a first reef, as well as the remainder of the way to Tahiti, which is the first place we will come to with the ability to get Fed-Ex and the proper parts we need to fix our main. I was absolutely, thoroughly disgusted with myself at this mistake I made, as I dam well know one of the cardinal rules of any boat is “If it doesn’t go, don’t force it.” But, I was tricked by how close the main was to being all the way up and just thought it was the last bit of hard to get halyard tension. Oh well, live and learn and I now know I will never make that mistake again, as I continue to add to my ever-increasing knowledge of seamanship.Marquesas Landfall The trade winds continued to be strong and even with a first reef in, our main sail is still massive, allowing us to keep our average speed hovering in the 9 to 10 knot range and exactly 13 days later we sighted land and the dramatic island of Fatu Hiva was first to appear. We spent the next hours lazily gybing downwind to fetch to Hiva Oa and the only port to clear into the Southern Marquesas, Atuona. We had all our fishing lines out as our freezer was empty and just before we hit the port, zzzzzzzzzz and its fish on! I go to grab the pole, first tightening up the drag and then whatever creature of the deep we hooked just kicks it into overdrive and starts taking out line at the most furious pace I have ever witnessed. Its hooked on our heaviest pole and our biggest reel and it doesn’t matter. There is too much pressure to even take the pole out of the rod holder and like in a movie smoke starts pouring out of the reel. There is a bucket nearby. I quickly dump some water on the reel, and it doesn’t do anything. I yell for a knife, hoping to cut the line before the reel is damaged beyond repair and Kahlil quickly brings one from the galley and the leviathan is cut loose to go back and haunt the deep freely once again. The reel doesn’t sound or feel quite the same any more and you couldn’t even touch the reel, it was so hot after it’s ordeal. And once again I add more knowledge to my body of seamanship. If you can’t slow the boat to a complete stop and don’t have the use of reverse, when you hook a real fish like a 300-lb. tuna it doesn’t matter how heavy your fishing tackle is, you are going to loose the fish, probably destroying your gear in the process too. Thus, trailing a long hand line, with 400 lb. mono or even wire for a leader is better and you just drag the beast to death and then winch it in. This is both much cheaper than wasting your money on expensive fishing tackle and by the time the monster fish makes it aboard, its basically dead tired and not dangerously thrashing around destroying your boat or you.

Anchored in Autona After ten landed Mahi Mahis, and one Yellowfin tuna, but now uncharacteristically fishless we drop anchor in dramatic Atuona Bay exactly 13 days 9 hours after leaving the Galapagos Islands. We covered 3,150 NM at an average speed of 9.81 knots, which is friggin flying, as all the boats we’ve met took between 3 to 5 weeks to make the same passage. Once again proving multihulls kick tons of ass, both sailing and at anchor, with their fast speeds, spacious accommodations and probably their best quality, they don’t roll continuously while at anchor. However it might not be quite as relaxing during the passage as a slow cruising monohull, for your adrenaline is continuously pumping when your surfing into the high teens and 20’s and the noise of water, hurriedly rushing past the hulls is intense.

Verdant hills of Hiva Oa The best way to describe these breathtaking, incredible islands that are the Marquesas is they are like the Napali coast of Kauai on acid. They look like the tops of giant mountains that jut straight out of the sea, with sheer, jagged cliffs thousands of feet high that meet the sea, pockmarked by the deepest, steepest valleys imaginable, with waterfalls pouring down them, so lush and verdant it appears every shade of green is represented. Perpetual dark clouds obscure their towering peaks, constantly showering the island in life giving rain and creating rainbows everywhere. Giant waves crash, exploding with tremendous force straight into the craggy shoreline (if you can call it that as there is not much shore just mountains into the sea), straight out of water a mile deep, their distant journey culminating in massive explosions of white spray every where you look. Tucked into the rugged coast is the picturesque harbor of Atuona, semi-protected by its lava breakwater where some of our cruising friends rest at anchor, continuously tossing back and forth in this extremely rolley anchorage. A 15 minute hike over the hill from the anchorage brings you to the quaint town where Marquesian people are extremely friendly, super jovial, quite helpful and seem to understand English if you speak slowly. Most the locals are of a solid, robust stature, not quite as large as Tongans or Fijians, but still much larger than us. Both men and women have extensive Marquesian tattoos and speak a combination of French and the local Marquesian dialect.

The local Currency Here just like most of the world beauty comes with a price and in French Polynesia its priced in Polynesia Francs, which are currently 77 to the dollar and I believe tied to the Euro. Everything is incomprehensibly expensive. For us to check in, as none of us are members of the European Union (member countries are exempt) we had to post bonds, that are the equivalent value of an airline ticket out of here, just in case we don’t want to leave (I think the cyclones will make us) and they have to deport us. The bill for the whole crew was $5,700, which we can’t get back until we check out to leave and then only from the bank in Papeete, Tahiti. As you purchase the bonds on your credit card you loose on the exchange rate, and then instead of crediting back your credit card when you leave they will only return the money to you in cash, in Polynesia Francs. Which you don’t want as you’re leaving their country and you loose another 5% or so on the backend exchange rate, Fuckers! Just another good reason to dislike the French, but really only their bureaucracy, as all the French cruisers we’ve met are all extremely friendly, helpful and good people. One boat with a French cruising family, with 3 small boys on board even greeted us the day we pulled in by giving us a giant slab of fresh tuna, that we greedily consumed for dinner, as we had not had meat for a couple of days now. Thank you very much, Patrick.

I don’t understand how the locals manage here as the prices of everything except baguettes and butter (both subsided) are through the roof and it doesn’t seem like there are lots of jobs or work to be found. Ben and I were waiting to clear in, but got to the immigration office around noon and everything here is closed between 11:30 and 2:30, so we killed some time by having lunch at the only open place period and the only restaurant in town. The bill for two cokes, two celebratory beers, and two Poisson Cru (raw fish salad) was $48, an absolute shock after unbelievably cheap Latin/South America where a dinner for 4 was always under $20. A trip to the local market was just that a “trip” and I will never think of Lazy Acres, as expensive again. A small bottle of ketchup was $12, small jar of pasta sauce $11, bottle of Jim Bean whisky $90, carton of eggs $8.50, Mayo $10, pack of cigarettes $12, 6 pack of Hinano the local beer $22, as we were out of fresh veggies I thought a cabbage might be cheap, wrong! I bought a $13 cabbage. But, tasty baguettes were a bargain at $.60 and French cheese semi-affordable, so that is what we stocked up on and the best deal of all here is that fruit is free.Bountiful Bananas It grows wild everywhere and is just there for the picking. We availed ourselves of bountiful bananas, mountainous mangos, luscious limes, great grapes and plentiful pamplemousse. First off, every fruit here tastes better than anything you can by in a store back home, but the real story is the pamplemousse. Its one of the best fruits I have ever had the privilege of tasting. Pamplemousse Tree It is basically a grapefruit, but green, way bigger, unbelievably sweet and tasty and I have no idea why they have not been imported into the US, they would be an unbelievable hit. A walk up the valley of our anchorage in search of ancient tikis resulted in not finding the tikis, but discovering the fruit fiesta and our transformation into hunter/gathers is becoming more complete by the day. We also learned what the infamous BO fruit that Kahlil availed himself of in Panama is. They grow everywhere here and people are farming them in great orchards. So, we visit an orchard and when asked what fruit they have for sale the farmer replied “Only grapefruit.” I pointed to the fruit loaded tree in question and in broken English he says “No for eating, Noni,” and points to his skin. He tells us people drink the overripe juice for cosmetic benefits and tells us he thinks its disgusting, funny and mystery solved.

Road to the Fruit Fiesta Another strange thing here is all the locals seem to drive very nice, large, lifted 4×4 trucks and SUV’s. Big full size American models, Toyotas or English Defender Land Cruisers (I especially like how the Gendarme drive English Land Cruisers, Napoleon must be turning over in his grave). Where they get the money for the trucks I have no idea and how they afford the gas is another mystery, as the price per gallon is a little over $9 and diesel $8 per gallon, a seeming galaxy away from the $1.06 of the Galapagos.

Floating in Autona Harbor So, as we swing on anchor in this breathtaking, peaceful place, work on getting our boat back into ship shape after the long passage, restock our stores, and get our legs back into walking order, our cruiser friends that departed the Galapagos before us keep showing up. Our young French friends from the Galapagos with their ship’s cat Trinket reappeared and I paid them a visit with a noisy P Kiddy in hopes maybe they would make friends. Trinket was a bit scared of the larger P and just would not meet him face-to-face and meowed and kept her distance. P on the other hand, ultra-confident just cruised around their boat smelling everything he could, unconcerned by the other cat and looked like he was relishing exploring another boat for the first time since the docks of Panama’s Flamenco Marina and charming the Frenchies with his super friendly demeanor. We met a Danish girl looking for her missing boat and let her borrow our Iridium Sat. phone to call and find out where they are and when I made the call discovered the boat was “Amazing” and just hours from pulling into the harbor. I love how small the ocean is and how we are all just a floating community looking after each other and sharing tons of fun times together, it truly is amazing.Trinket and P Kiddy It looks like we will be shoving off from this port in another couple of days with planed stops at a couple more Marquesian islands, before heading the 500 NM to the Tuamotus and their surf filled, coral reef passes. We have heard rumors of a mysto wave that is suppose to be super gnarly and deadly, on par deadly wise with Teaphoo, on an island south of here, so that’s where were headed, as there is not much surf here. The islands are just too new in the geologic time frame, coral reefs have not had sufficient time to form and enough erosion has not occurred to develop shoaling beaches, but the raw and prehistoric beauty of this place more than makes up for the lack of waves and we all feel truly privileged to have sailed here for our first visit, just like the ancient Polynesians. I think they would be proud of us, Respect. Cheers – Kyber

Tags: Natural Mystic

22 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Jeff & Andra // Aug 26, 2008 at 1:19 am

    Hey Kyber & Crew, Congratulations on the land fall and a successful pacific crossing! What a great ride on a super turbo charged cat that is fast and stable. Keep an eye out for the other SB gypsy’s on the trail, Liz Clark on Swell (Cal 40) and Gavin McClurg aboard Odyssey (Lagoon 57 cat). I’d imagine Gavin could provide some great info on kiting and surf spots in the area?
    Keep up the good work~ Jeff

  • 2 Dave Salgado // Aug 26, 2008 at 9:48 am

    Pretty Cool is all I can say!
    Stay safe, crazy about those long lines!

  • 3 kyber // Aug 26, 2008 at 2:54 pm

    Check out all the new posts, I hope everyone back home and all our friends from our travels are doing well and we all wish you nothing but the best. We’re out of here today headed to new, more remote Islands this afternoon once we stock up on some produce and petrol. Audios, Amigos. Kyber

  • 4 Sharona // Aug 26, 2008 at 2:56 pm

    Wow Kyber!
    Your crossing sounds amazing! Congratulations! “Almost” makes me want to do it too. I’m still trying to get comfortable being out of site of land. Anyway, your account of the trip is fantastic. You definitely have a gift there. Take care… hope you find those waves. Be Safe! ~ Sharon

  • 5 Charles Logue // Aug 26, 2008 at 4:15 pm

    Dear Mystic Men A wonderful crossing that will forever be in your memory. The absolute largeness of sea and sky, combined with color, motion, noise and smell, will make for indelible cerebral tattoos, not unlike those Captain Cooks crew brought home to England with them from Tahiti, except of course, for the lack of ink. How wonderful to have birds aloft everyday as you experienced the rhythmic hum of our blue planet. Do double check your maps for navigational hazzards as you meander around French Polynesia. Dittos for when you are surfing. Love to all of you, Charles

  • 6 Tina // Aug 26, 2008 at 5:24 pm

    Kyber! Are you cheaking your emails? In case not, I have a ticket for Tahiti on thursday wich means I could be on Tahiti thursday night/afternoonish lokal time, but I want a yes from you befor I get on the plane. I want to come, I miss you and i am pretty much doing everything I can to make it happen. So there goes the rest of my pride, and i need to know what you are thinking.

    Ps: dont post this!

    PPS: In case you tried calling me and couldnt get through(i heard some phones are haveing lots of trubles on the east part of Norway) you can try any one of these; my mom 92045433, Arild 90691680, my sister 99248822 or home phone 63 82 93 68. (pluss 0047 for norway)

  • 7 Mike // Aug 26, 2008 at 7:06 pm

    Hey Kyber and NM Crew,
    Dude, you guys are badass! There’s no way you’d find me jumping in the water in the middle of the night a thousand miles from land. Stay safe and keep the stories coming.

    Mike, Caileen & Andy

  • 8 sabork // Aug 26, 2008 at 11:11 pm

    Moogalabimbe my oceanic amigos. Great read on your travels across the Pacific. Stoked to talk with you the other day Kyber on your Sat phone…jealous as the day you left. Slap the crew some high-fives for voyage to Tuamotus. See you guys in late September. Sandor

  • 9 Jamie // Aug 27, 2008 at 2:13 am

    Parts will be ordered soon! Planning on a early Oct. visit with S-dude. Ocean voyage sounded breathtaking! My sail from Kauai to Santa Barbara took 13 days and on my watch 200 miles from Pt Conception I hit 19.9 knots with the #3 jib and a double reefed main. It was an awesome feeling steering the 70′ mono hull race boat on a massive swell and the spray shooting over my head from the bow! All,under a full moon at 3am! I miss it! Take care boys! JD

  • 10 grant // Aug 27, 2008 at 12:10 pm

    Tina. Too late…

    Kyber, glad you made it safe and sound!


  • 11 cynthia // Aug 28, 2008 at 1:33 pm

    i know right..too late – so much for private matters :)

    i too am glad you made it safe…
    ox -cynthia

  • 12 Jack & Karen Byers // Aug 30, 2008 at 3:33 pm

    Wow! What an incredible journey and accomplishment. We were with you on every wave as you crossed the Pacific. Can hardly wait to turn the page on your next chapter. Hope to see you in Tahiti. Love & Hugs, Jack & Karen

  • 13 Arthur // Aug 31, 2008 at 11:54 pm

    Kyber and Crew, you guys rock, 13 day passage is unreal. What a journey your having and what a nice blog. Great running into you guys on San Cristobal, pretty amazing diving at kicker. What a cool island complete with some great breaks. Your chicken cart tip was very tasty and at the right price. Good luck in the South Pacific.

  • 14 Darren A. Peterson // Sep 2, 2008 at 2:19 pm

    I am so amazed at how blue the water is out at the lava boulder slab! Wish our beaches could be so clean. Hope you guys picked up some pepto for those upset stomaches :o)~ Keep on truckin guys while you keep the journey alive.

  • 15 Melissa // Sep 4, 2008 at 3:44 pm

    Dear Kyber I am loving every moment of your adventure! Sail on, Sail on!! Love, Melissa

  • 16 Matt Dubberley // Sep 7, 2008 at 2:47 pm

    This trip/adventure sounds awesome! Hope you guys keep it up.

  • 17 Kel // Sep 14, 2008 at 12:46 am

    Hey All!
    Just read the site and sounds like you guys had an amazing crossing. Wicked!! Us as well! You guys popped up in conversation with Neil and Phil and we were wondering how you guys made out.
    We are currently in Tahiti and its absolutely amazing here. There is so much more to do here, but as you know its fucking expensive. It is also nice to be on land after 2 months of anchor plus crossing. Marina Tania is were we are at and the community here is fantastic. All wonderful people just cruising. I am sure you guys have met your fare share as well. When you get here there is 2 awesome things I can tell ya to do. One…Happy Hour at the Dingy Bar 5pm. 2 for 1 Beers! Two…Head over to the Leeward side of the island and you will find hundreds of surfers there. Wicked Surf and super strength wind for Kite Surfing. You might just never leave!
    Anyways we are here for another couple weeks until we pick up our boss. What NM’s plans? Well if we don’t catch up here, then I am sure somewhere along the lines we’ll all catch up for couple pops.
    Hope all is well with everyone!
    Keep rockin’ it out!
    Kel, Phil and Neil
    NSN Crew

  • 18 Jamie // Sep 21, 2008 at 9:05 pm

    We will be there soon!! Airfare is booked! S-dude and Hime will arrive in Papeete on Oct.9th! See you soon!

  • 19 Henriette // Sep 25, 2008 at 5:19 pm

    MEssage for Kahlil: It’s now a month since you wrote your last blog, and naturally, being a mother, I am now starting to lose sleep over not having heard anything since August 25th. Will be very glad when I hear from you. Thanks for the exciting blogs.

  • 20 Henriette // Oct 2, 2008 at 3:28 pm

    Dear Charles and Candy

    Thanks so much for your comment and response to mine. I have been checking the website every week (sometimes more often) to notice there has been no update and got steadily more worried, not thinking to check the comments again. That is, late at night. During the days I manage to overcome worry and think positive . Could have been at peace since September 27th! Thanks for your concern and the wonderful description of their experiences as gleaned from Kyber’s phone calls to you. Would be keen to get another update. Thanks also for the phone numbers. I have often wondered what I would do should I not hear from them for an unacceptably long time. Now I know that you are keeping in touch with your son and I never need to worry. Will keep checking the comments. I really enjoy the journal written on the website by Kyber and the others. I have a great deal of trust in him and Kahlil.
    Kind regards
    Henriette. (email

  • 21 Randi // Oct 3, 2008 at 3:37 am

    From one mother to the other mothers…. I am sitting here in Norway and checking the website everyday…. and I am very happy for the last comments about the offspring. I am Tinas mother who is really excited for her and the INCREDIBLE adventure she is on with your guys. Coudn’t be more envious. I can’t wait to here the next update, and to enjoy the fantastic pictures Ben is taking. I don’t mind her skipping school, this is the greatest school of all. With winter around the corner in Norway…..brrrrr
    Ps I spend one year in Santa Barbara in 1979/80.
    Lots of happiness and sunshine to all of you, Randi.

  • 22 Andreea Vaas // Oct 8, 2008 at 3:57 am

    I like the two cats they are so cute

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