You can lose everything, but nobody will take away what you saw and what you experienced...
Jun 09, 2013 12:00 AM They are sailing around the North Pole!
Lady Dana 44 is made of steel! The target of the voyage is to sail on a sailing yacht under Polish flag around the North Pole during one summer season, across the free of ice waters of the Arctic Sea, first along the northern coast of Eurasia to the Bering Strait, and further east, along the northern coast of North America, to finish the circle across the Atlantic.
The leader of the expedition is cpt Ryszard Wojnowski, 55 (see him on the picture). According to the itinerary they expect to be back in Poland in around 4 months. I wish them to achieve the dream target. Lets keep the fingers crossed for them!
The web page of the expedition: www.arctic2013.pl
Jun 08, 2013 12:00 AM Lady Dana 44
Today I had a pleasure to say good-bye to my friends - the brave Polish sailors who are sailing around the North Pole on the little (14-m long) yacht "Lady Dana 44". In the history only two boats did such a route (yachts from Russia and Sweden). Going eastbound they will sail first through the Northeast Passage (I recognize this stage the hardest part of their expedition) and then through the Northwest Passage.
I visited in the past many places they are going to... But it took me many years... I gave them my DVD movie from my Nothwest Passage Expedition in 2012 so they can check in advanve what to expect there. Happy Journey my friends!
May 12, 2013 12:00 AM Enjoying spring flowers in Wojtkówka...
Lovely, warm spring arrived finally to my Wojtkówka with all its colors... Fresh green is all around and first trees are already in blossom. That's why I am coming back to Poland every year in May...
I have a lot of work on the open air, but such a views are worth the effort.
Dear friends - I uploaded the flowers from Wojtkówka for you - to share my joy. Welcome to Wojtkówka! (Next travel only in September - I believe :)
Apr 21, 2013 12:00 AM Flight over Siberia...
Terminal 1 of Tokyo Narita airport is well organized. The staff smiles so nice... But those are last nice smiles I saw on this voyage... Once you are on board of Airbus 340 the smiles are rare and not as nice as in Japan :).
It was a long flight over the Northern Siberia. 11,5 hours in the air. I was watching once again "Les Miserables" on the private screen.
But if you want to drink a can of coke between the meals you have to bring your credit card and pay!
It was lovely sun shining when I landed in Gdansk. Spring!
What a day.
And what a voyage came to the safe end!
Welcome to Gdansk!
Apr 20, 2013 12:00 AM By the rough ocean to Tokyo
Horrible night! This time I got the mattress no. 93. The big room of economy class was full again. 120 people in one room! Some 20 cm distance mattress to mattress. The ocean was rough and it was hardly rocking our little boat.
I was just sliding many times to my neighbour - the old Jap. -Sumimasen - excuse me!
Tokyo appeared at 3 pm in the haze and light rain.
My friend was waiting for me ashore - thanks a lot Mirek!
Can you imagine that his wife Mag is baking here in Japan very tasty Polish bread?! We spend the evening talking and watching my pictures from Ogasawara. Lovely family!
Apr 19, 2013 12:00 AM Once again around the island - goodbye Ogasawara!
No more rain in the morning so I decided to go once again around the Chichjima expecting better light for the pictures from the well-known view points. I took a piblic bus for 200 y to the Kominato junction and then started to climb. I did it, but sorry - no sun today.
Back in Oshima I visited a shinto religion temple on the hill and then it was the time to pack up and go to the pier where Ogsawara Maru was waiting. Saying goodbye to all friends I boarded again the ship as the only westerner...
Departure was very spectacular: they were drumming and waving flags. The cavacade of 7-8 motorboats on the full speed accompanied the ship to the open sea. And kamikadze-divers were jumping from this boats to the see - still waving their hands.
Bye-bye beautiful islands of Ogawawara!
Apr 18, 2013 12:00 AM Another stormy day on Chichi
Tropical storm in the morning. Locals are happy because they suffer from the lack of the sweet water... Me - not... I have still places to see on Chichijima...
When the rain stoped in the afternoon I decided to go to the trail anyway and... I returned almost completly wet. But do not worry - it is warm here!
Internet connection in Papaya is dead - I write from tho other place...
"Ogasawara Maru" is already in the harbor and I believe that tomorrow in the afternoon I will be forced to say goodbye to all my new friends from the Laughing Islands.
If the morning will be sunny I still want to go to the cliffs to take better pictures for you. Can you make any magic, please???
Apr 17, 2013 12:00 AM 50 sharks making love on the public beach!
After yesterday's kilometers of hiking it was relaxing day. The sun over Hahajima was still shining so I took the walk to the little cave in the settlement /take a key from the tourist office/. It is rather a kind of WW2 shelter - not worth to see. Then I went to the sandy public beach and... hard to believe: I saw more then 50 whitetip reef sharks laying in the shallow water just 2 m from me! I have this recorded, sharks were 1 to 1,5 m long... Some of them were moving slowly and coming back to lay on the others...
I asked local guy what they do and he responsed: they are making love!
In the noon I said goodbye to all my friends from Hahajima and boarded "Hahajima Maru" to Chichijima. Some of this people came especially to the jetty to wave their hands. Thanks to all!
I had a pleasure to meet captain Aki and to make a souvenir picture with him. Visibility was good on approach to Chichi so I had a chance to photograph another phenonena of the nature: the Heart Rock. Hope to show you this red heart in the grey cliff on return!
Apr 16, 2013 12:00 AM Great view from the highest peak...
Today I had the last chance to climb Mt Chibusa - the highest peak in Ogasawara group of islands. Yesterday I experienced serious tropical storm. How will be the weather today? Thanks God the sun was shining since the morning and at 7.30 I was already on the trail. In fact there are two trails to the top of Chibusayama - how they call it here. Left one is shorter but steep. The right one - longer and offers more panoramic views. I took left one up and the right - down. I reached the summit after some 1,5 hours of non-stop climbing in the dense tropical forest. From the level of 463 m there was especially good view of the hardly accesible eastern coast. On the west side the settlement was visible too and the chain of little islands too. It is not true what they write that you can see whole island from Chibusayama - the far north is not visible. But it is still great panoramic point.
I lost one day due to the rain so despite the morning effort I decided to go in the afternoon to the far north of the island - to the abandoned village of Kita-mura. Once 600 people was living there... I rented from the tourist office car with local driver to drop me there. According to the published tarrif it cost 2200 y for 12 kms of up and downs. Kita is nice bay with stoney beach but nothing except little pier remained. I returned walking and visiting attractions like empty Higashi port, Ww2 cannon, Big Bay and Long Beach. Legs are very heavy after such a day :-)
But what a day!
Apr 15, 2013 12:00 AM Tropical storm over Hahajima
I woke up in the middle of the night. Thunders? Yes, and heavy rain! In the morning I noticed also strong wind. It was blowing till 1 am. At 3 pm I put my windbreaker on me and went for the walk. Soon the rain stopped and I had a chance to visit lokal cemetary on the slope. Interesting place. Rolf, the Jap-naturalized German who decided to spend his life here in 19th century is buried there. There is small but interesting museum in the village with his bust in the front.
Then I managed to climb Mt Shonensaki - the hill overlooking the village. At the upper part you have to use chains to climb safely to the top. There is a great view of the village, Oki port and Mt Chibusa. If the unpredictable weather will be good, tomorrow I want to climb this mountain - the highest in Ogasawara.
People are nice to me - I have been to the school to see how they teach here /luxury!/ and charming Asako from the shop promised me a loaf of bread for tomorrow... let's hope...