Siberut Island, Mentawai
You can definitely tell that we are nearing the equator again. When the sun is out it can be blazing above 90 degrees, the water a balmy 86 degrees. The monsoon season is about to begin as well though, so the majority of the days can be cloud covered and raining buckets. Our freshwater tanks are always full but nothing ever has the chance to dry out with the humidity. You can nearly watch the mold grow on the inside of the hatches and any utensil that considered rusting is letting loose now.
Electronic equipment such as computers and cameras are beginning to struggle as well but keep limping along while we baby them. The surroundings are beautiful if you have to sit/surf in the rain somewhere. We are having a wonderful time getting in our exercise before our chances for surfing are gone. Once we leave Indonesia they diminish greatly. The islands are thick with lush green palm trees surrounded by white sand beaches and turquoise waters. Being so remote we rarely see another vessel
shy of a few surf charters and local fishing boats.
We are slowly hopping our way up through the islands. Most of the islands and anchorages around here are actually known by their surf location name as given by charter captains. Mentawaian's actually has their own dialect as well separate from Bahasa, which makes communication even more challenging. Depending which map or guide book you look at the island or anchorage may have 2 or 3 different names. Southern and Northern Pagai, Sipora, and Siberut Islands are the main ones we have been hovering
around. The main islands are surrounded by hundreds of smaller, lesser named ones where we usually end up finding our anchorages. Thanks to some great charter boat captain's we have met out here, they have provided us with some great info and connections along the way. Since the most recent earthquake a month or two ago, the reefs and islands geography has changed as great as 1 to 3 feet depending on which side of the island you are standing. Quite amazing.
We spent a fun and wet Halloween in a place called Rag's or Teluk Pasangan just off of Southern Pagai, complete with carved watermelons and scary movies. The next couple of days we spent in a great location called Macaroni's, found off the west coast of Northern Pagai. Tristan had the opportunity to catch his last wave as an eleven year old and his first wave as a twelve year old with 20 of his closest australian surfer friends off a charter boat sharing the bay with us. Amazingly fun and supportive,
this crowd of surfers shall we say are of the more mature nature (i.e. pot bellies and pocket books), and let the little kid on the block drop in on them whenever he could. From there we headed up the way to Lance's Lefts, a surf break located off the town of Katiet, the main village on the southern peninsula of Sipura Island. We found a wonderful beach break there that everyone, including the locals on the bashed, beaten, often no tip boards were riding away. Great fun.
Bought a few carvings and on our way again.
Next stop was the town of Topejat. A major town by all standards out here. Complete with large supply ships and fuel. Good for us, since everyone was beginning to watch the fuel gauges bounce around the big E sign. Even better was a ton of wonderful produce. The only true excitement here was in the middle of the night, Ohana Kai's rudder managed to find a big beautiful SHALLOW coral bommie and crunch, took a bight out of the side we later discovered. Only about an 1/2" x 1" x 2". Once we reached
clear water in which we could dive and check it out we were able to place a patch on it and all's well. The guide books failed to mention that one.
Fast in and fast out and we were on our way towards the island of Siberut. A quick one night stop nestled between the islands of Pulau (Island) Karangmajat and Pulau Penanggalansabeu, also known as 4 Bob's. Before the rain hit, it was the picture perfect scene with a white sand beach arising out of the waters dotted with just a few palm trees. The deserted island you dream of. Every island surrounding us looks as though Max and his band of Wild Things could come parading out of the jungle at
Finally we settled for a weeks worth of play near the island of Dodiki or Roniki depending on the chart and a surf break known as Burgerworld. Again we were able to hunt the coasts and find a beach break for everyone in the morning and when the wind was down, The big boy surfed Burgerworld in the afternoons. With only a few days left before we head to the mainland Sumatra, city of Padang to check out of the country, we are giving Pulau Masokut a quick try. The road less traveled has been serving
us well so far. Not sure if we are ready to head back on into the crazy city scene of Phuket and Thailand. Give us the chance though and we are sure we could find a road less traveled there as well.
until next time,
your crew on Ohana Kai