The gear that got us here

The gear that got us here!

I remember pondering (whilst flying along at a VBOX registered 40mph!) how phenomenal the kites and buggies we have been using are.

Hitting a small beach stream at 40mph (screenshot from Video VBOX)

Hitting a small beach stream at 40mph (screenshot from Video VBOX)

You can point the buggies at anything you choose; almost no terrain is impossible. On one day, we kited across four deep rivers. The largest was around 40m wide. We have bounced over sand dunes, pounded across rock hard sand, and broken through hard vegetation. Having the PLK Outlaw buggies has provided us with the confidence that anything terrain is possible.

Navigating through rocks and sea with the outlaw buggy and ozone kite

Navigating through rocks and sea with the outlaw buggy and ozone kite

Not satisfied with the kite surfer versus kite buggy race we would love to have a race with a 4×4 over an off-road course. Having spoken to a local all terrain vehicle driver we think it would be close – especially without luggage and with more skilled pilots than ourselves!

The Ozone kites have also been brilliant. It is amazing that the kites are so easy to control – enabling us to do an expedition of this magnitude with no kiting experience. They have kept us on our toes but still provided stability over difficult terrain and turbulent wind conditions.

So there you go – we picked the correct sponsors! 🙂


Dodging wind farms and annoying kids…we´re trying to get to Preã!

Kiting through mangroves can be difficult. Walking through mangroves is definitely harder. When the mud reached knee high, we decided to head inland to the roads. For this stage of the coastline there were no sandy beaches – instead mud, mangroves, and rivers. Continue reading

Kite board vs buggy – speed test

Chasing the sunset into Baleia

Chasing the sunset into Baleia

We were having the run of our lives. Cross-on wind, huge beach, consistant 20 knot wind hitting our 7m & 9m Frenzy’s, no-one else in sight.

That was until we rounded a headland, and saw a hundred kites in the sky! Continue reading

Getting Closer to the Target…

It’s the afternoon before we set off, and we’ve had some very good news! Firstly, Christchurch Harbour Hotel has generously decided to sponsor us on our journey. They have donated a large amount of money to Centrepoint to help us reach our target of £2000 for the charity.

Harry and I have both worked there during school and university holidays (Harry playing piano in the bar and me doing the cocktails!) and we appreciate them getting on board for this trip. Situated on the edge of the idyllic Christchurch Harbour in Dorset, England, the hotel is one of five in the Harbour Hotels chain. The others are in Salcombe, Sidmouth, St Ives, and another in Christchurch.

The view of Christchurch Harbour from the hotel

David Hurley, Founder of Anglia Computers has also generously donated, again bringing us significantly closer to our target – for which we’re very grateful! Anglia Computers is based in Cambridge, and implements and supports innovative IT solutions based on Microsoft technologies. Anglia Computers won the prestigious ‘Microsoft partner of the year’ award in 2010.

We’re still amazed at the generosity of so many people in donating their time, advice, equipment and funds for charity. Let’s hope this extends to the check in desk at Heathrow airport tomorrow so we don’t have to pay too much excess baggage charges!

It’s a bit like swimming the channel 8 days after the first time in a pool…

Things have been mad hectic here. From running around hardware shops to buy spring washers to stop the buggy wheels falling off, to setting up our SPOT GPS (like our facebook page to track us), training with no wind, losing and then finding bolts again (thanks for the spares Oxford Bearings!), pumping our tyres with Ultraseal anti-puncture sealant and seating the bead (thanks Graham at GM Tyres!)… the list goes on.

But, things are definitely starting to come together. Which is lucky because we’re leaving in 4 days!

Onto the subject of this post…I caught Harry up and had my first lesson with Kevin and his daughter Ashleigh at SB Kites in Poole last Sunday.

This may seem mad, to only start kite buggying 8 days before we leave for an epic trip. It’s almost like trying to swim the channel, only 8 days after ever jumping in a pool. Certainly it seemed rather daunting to me, especially with the wind blowing offshore at force 4 and gusting to force 5 or 6.  However Kevin allayed these fears, teaching me first how the kite works, and then where the safety mechanisms are, and what they do. Then he hooked himself up, and showed me a couple of maneuvers he wanted me to practice. Kite high up in the window (zenith apparently!), then to the right (2 o’clock), then the left (10 o’clock). Controlling the kite between these two points.

A couple of hours later, Continue reading