Almost 20 years ago, Katya and Mike met on the platform. Katya jumped with a parachute, and Mike was a pilot. Very quickly, they learned about their mutual wanderlust. Avid tourists, they traveled halfway across South America in a tent and backpack. They crossed the Atacama Desert and crossed the Andes by mountain biking. After that, from bicycles, already inspired by athletes on the water, they switched to kayaks and kayaks, on which they discovered the Swedish skerries and the Lofoten Islands. Their foldable boats were the first step in the direction of sailing.
This was followed by the yacht "Waarschip 725" and the beginning of the "correct" yachting. With the advent of baby Niklas, the guys had to temporarily suspend their rather active pastime on board. But instead of an all-inclusive trip, another trip was planned. The idea of a long voyage had been spinning in their minds for a long time, even before the purchase in 2009 of the 16-year-old 9m long yacht Nubia. 1 year of hard work - and they converted Nubia into a transatlantic vessel.
After Katya and Mike quit their jobs, they, together with their already 2-year-old son, set off on a journey full of adventure.
For a whole year, Katya Vaupel and Mike Poiker with their little son traveled under sail in the waters of the West Indies (the Caribbean Sea and the adjacent waters of the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean). A yacht trip from Hamburg to the US Virgin Islands has revolutionized their lives.
"NUKAMINI" - this is us - Nubia, Katya, Mike (from the English Mike) and Niklas, who at the time of the beginning of the trip was only 2 years old. We made our dream come true and took a sailing cruise in our 9m steel Nubia in the West Indies. The wake trail, which at the end of the journey was 7000 nautical miles, we left near the island of Helgoland, the province of Vizcaya in Spain, the notorious Rias, Portugal, Madeira, the Canary Islands, Cape Verde and the English Channel. We made a long single voyage through the not always calm waters of the Atlantic to Barbados, and also made a whole detour in the Caribbean waters from Grenada all the way to the Virgin Islands of America.
Journey by stages: the family traveled together to the Canary Islands, Mike Peukert crossed the Atlantic alone, then Nubia returned to Europe.
"Paaaaapilo, paaaapilo, papilo!" Katya released Niklas from her hands, and he, without thinking twice, legs in hand - ran to his papilla. Only after exactly one month and one day we were lucky enough to hug again. How much I wanted this day to come! The longest, loneliest and perhaps the most dangerous four weeks of my life are finally over. On the island of Tenerife, I waved to both of them for the last time just at the moment when the pier disappeared from the horizon, and behind it the Marina of San Miguel. I had to cross the North Atlantic myself. As it turned out later, this was not a good idea. More details later.
Family travel in the waters of the West Indies
Everyone was present - friends, relatives and acquaintances. They waved at us, and we gradually lost sight of them as we set off on our Nubia on a long journey down the Elbe. On the fourth day we managed to reach the port of Cuxhaven. If this goes on, we will need three weeks until Helgoland!
An entry in the logbook of 05/26/2011, 9:40 am: “We go with the flow, the wind is fair, there is almost no disturbance on the water. A beautiful day is expected, are all the decisions correct? Everything is going well until lunchtime. We can dock in Helgoland, and everything indicates that we can arrive there before 16.00 or 17.00 ".
14:00: “The first storm squalls, approximately 78 on the Beaufort scale with vortices. Unfortunately, the wind will not subside until evening. We are walking under the storm jib and will not be able to reach Helgoland. The current, waves, wind are all against us. Everything is pounding terribly, Katya's soul sinks into her heels. Neither the autopilot nor the wind turbine can handle the steering. The turning angle is gigantic. To the east of the bow, we move farther and farther from Heligoland, turning, heading back towards Cuxhaven. When we go on the engine, bury our nose in the waves and move at a speed of 00.7 knots - we practically stand still. This is the worst day on a yacht of all that have already been. "
22:45: "Squeezed like a lemon, we reach our goal and let the storm break out over our heads."
Black-black night, we are somewhere between Rotterdam and Zeebrugge. About 34 miles from us, I see brightly lit work ships very close to each other. The moment I am abeam, the work environment relaxes a little and one ship is heading for Nubia. I am walking at a speed of maybe 3 knots on a rough sea. It seems to me? No. Despite the fact that I have already covered a fairly long distance, this ship is heading towards us. The second follows the first, as if one is not enough, and behind it one can see another. I can't help thinking that they just decided to change the location. The sea is too agitated to turn on the motor. "Need to dodge, dodge" I think before it's too late so that they can change their course. Not far from the first ship, I make a steering wheel movement and go to the side. Others change course as well. Finally, dawn comes, and with it the certainty that they have stopped "chasing." Katya and Niklas acted most sensibly in this situation - they peacefully slept through this little incident.
By the time the fog is just beginning to descend in the port, the engine has already started. We give up the mooring lines and head for the UK. Closer and closer we are getting closer to realizing the dream of crossing the waters of Biscay. At first it was decided that I would go on this flight alone, but later everything changed - we set off together.
July 3, 2012 is Niklas's birthday. He will be 2 years old. Meanwhile, he chatters incessantly all day. When we sail on a boat, he waves his hand endlessly and repeats 100 times "Bye, Nubia!", and as soon as he sees the yacht in the distance, the continuation follows with the words: "Hello, Nuuuubia!".
In Falmouth, we wait for the weather in Vizcaya. The ship looks like everything was taken out after the explosion: furniture, linen, tools. In the midst of this chaos, a hanging bunk sways between the mast and the fokastag. Even a mermaid can be seen in the glare of several other waiting yachts. So Tim thought on the Bumble-Bee when he invited us to his Wharram catamaran. Until today, we remain best friends and we make part of this journey together.
On July 9, 2011, on a Bumble-Bee yacht, we leave Falmouth together, aided by a mild tailwind, leaving the English coast behind. We're heading for Spain! Somewhere in the direction of Vizcaya. Excerpt from Katya's diary:
“The sea is beautiful, deep blue, shines through when the sun's rays hit it, and then it turns black, gray again, with white lambs, terrifying and loving, flat like a flounder, oily, playing with cat's legs, gently rocking its large , in long waves, noisy, bubbling, meager. "
We drop anchor in a small cove on the northern coast of Portugal. We are overwhelmed with joy because we have managed to walk such a long distance. And we are even a little proud of it. Heligoland, the English Channel with a storm in front of Dieppe and even the notorious Viscay - all this has been completed. We cruise slowly along the coast, stop at Coruna, enjoy the trip to Santiago de Compostela and Cap Finisterre. Now you have to reach Rias with the protected islands - one of the most desired goals of the entire trip.
I would also like to visit the fishing village of Combarro on the northern coast of the Ria de Pontevedra. Further attracts the southern direction, and soon we turn and take a course to the open sea - forward to Madeira.
Excerpt from the logbook: “2:00 am: 300 nautical miles to Porto Santo in Madeira. From the port side, a strong wave attacks Nubia. The yacht sways like a car skidding on the road. Water is poured into the salon and shower through the ventilation holes. Five-day hike. My hope for the three of us to cross the Atlantic is dwindling. On Graziosa, a small Canary island, it was decided that Katya and Niklas would fly home in a couple of weeks and cross the Atlantic a little later on board a comfortable plane. We also go around Gran Canaria, Tenerife and La Gomera - and now the day of farewell has come. "
“I have to spend 4 damn weeks alone. On Cape Verde, I am still arguing with myself: should I go further or stop? I move on, call back and send letters home and shortly before holy evening I experience another storm - the thunderstorms died down ... and 21 days later I enter the Carlisle Strait in Barbados, where I can again meet Katya and Niklas on board. The following months in Grenada, the Union Islands, the islets of Tobago, Antigua and many other Antilles are a kind of reward for the efforts spent in the waters of the Atlantic. Completely out of touch with time and nervous tension, we enjoy a super transparent, warm turquoise sea. We dive and swim with barracudas, turtles and sharks, do jungle excursions, or simply meet friends at countless barbecue parties. After all, we belong to the “elite” of yachtsmen, where everyone knows each other and sometimes travels together too. "
Family travel in the waters of the West Indies
Family travel in the waters of the West Indies
AMERICAN VIRGIN ISLANDS
I am writing these lines sitting in our Nubia in front of Charlotte-Emily, the capital of St. Thomas. The air has warmed up to 350C, and drops of sweat are streaming down my body. About 8,000 American pot-bellied and tanned tourists are currently walking the streets. Two cruise yachts carry out 2-hour excursions and provide an opportunity in Charlotte-Emily to earn money for jewelry and watch shops and taxi drivers. I only write this because it occurred to me. Exactly 1 year and 2 days I spent the night on board Nubia - so many days in a row in one place and in one bed - this has never happened to me before. To all of the above, we can add the set record - the last time I really washed in the shower, I mean in the bathroom under fresh water, 6 months ago on about. Tenerife! Hmm ... When I think about it, I understand that it was still not a real bathroom ...
And so ... ... now we are here again. The same house, the same pictures on the wall, the same work - in short, everything is the same as before ..? No! Something has changed. Prior to this trip, Katya worked as an environmental consultant, and I was a pilot in an airline. And we didn't want to go back to work anymore. Why not turn your hobby into a profession? After a while, we look back and remember the first successful season of our newly established yacht charter company in Hamburg. For 8 months we worked hard to bring the idea to life. We often grumbled: so much work for so little money. But this is exactly the same as with travel - you just need to have a strong enough desire, then everything will work out. And in the end you have to be angry with yourself for not trying something. However, in this, at least, we cannot reproach ourselves.
More information on the website: nukamini.blogspot.de
Charter company: www.klassisch-am-wind.de
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