Kirk Hollis >> African Winds
This news piece has not yet been translated but will be soon, thank you for your patience.
I’ve had an interesting time making my way up the coast of Mozambique, its been a tough challenge in many ways.
On July 28 I arrived in Sodwana Bay where I planned to start the trip. Situated on the north east coast of RSA about 150km below the Moz boarder it makes a great place to start a trip like this. However the wind has to be blowing in the right direction.
For 3 days the wind blew from the north, I need the south easterly. I was not expecting the wind to be to consistent in this region as the Kusi trde wind only has effect from Northern Moz. On the 1st of August I crossed into Moz and got two days kiting in Ponta Da Ora, with the wind not consistent I decided to use local transport to get further north to Maputo. This took a full day, with roads and transport being as bad as they are getting around is a new challenge all on its own. Trying to fit into the crammed minibusses with all your gear is not fun, the drivers charge you double “150 mts for you and 150 mts for your board” and then he straps it to the roof.
After spending a night in maputo the wind got up the next day and was about 15 knots from the south east so I set off up the coast for about an hour and the wind died, I covered about 15km and was in the middle of nowhere. Making my way back to the main road I hitched North to Inhambane. After a day on the road arrived in Inhambane at midnight and found a parked bus in the bus park in persuaded the driver to let me sleep in the back of the bus which was fine by me.
The next morning I made my way to Tofo, arriving at 6:30 am. After watching some Humpbacked whales for about half an hour the wind started form the south and picked up to about 18 knots and was colder than I expected. After rigging my Ozone Catalyst 10m and climbing into my SouthernSea 4mm wetsuit I set off across the bay. Once on the other side of the bay the wind started do drop so I hit shore which was sprinkled with rocks. With no roads near by I started hiking inland and found a road back to Inhambane. From here I caught a ferry to Machechi and headed north to Vilanculos.
After a long painfull journey I made it to Vilanculos and found a spot to stay which was in a good spot to wait for the wind. After 4 days with no wind I carried on north in search of the Kusi. Hitch hiking is like opening a lucky packet, you never know what you going to get and in Mozambique you take what you get. The road runs far inland from the coast so its hard to find the wind when on the road. I stopped at most of the main coastal towns on the way but still no wind.
Finally after 5 days of hitching and sleeping in places you shouldn’t sleep in I arrived in Pemba and found a really nice place on the beach called Russels Place. Situated just south of Wimby beach it provides a great spot to relax for a few days and is one of the most popular kite spots in Moz. The next morning the wind picked up and was blowing from the SE at about 18knts. I met Dave who manages Russels Place who kites as well and he joined for a session, this was the first non solo day on the water which was nice.
With the internet being almost impossible in Moz I decided to spend a few days here catching up and letting some of the other kiters test the Catalyst which impressed all. With the wind being consistent here I managed to get some great down winders and some amazing pics with the help of Dave who is sharp with his camera skills.
This is as far as I’ve made it and will be heading further north in the next day or 2, to cross into Tanzania.
This expedition has already made it onto the front cover of Destination Mag In Kenya and will be covered my many more during and after.
Thanks for all your support.