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Old 09-26-2012, 07:42 PM   #1
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Thumbs up SE Asia/Indonesia to Australia

Hi!

My name's Regan; I'm a 26 year old American and I'm in the middle (literally: Kazakhstan) of hitchhiking from France to Australia. The plan right now is to roll into Indonesia around the first of March (it's tentative--hitching's no exact science) make a beeline for Bali and start looking for a boat to join in sailing to Darwin, etc.

Now, I realize lots of folks are skirting around PNG and heading down the northeast coast and that's great with me too; final destination is the Gold Coast, where (cue the audience "awww") there's a girl I'm crossing the world to see. So it's quite important to me that I do this water crossing right!

I don't have a ton of sailing experience: only two days, in fact. While the rest of the rookie sailors were dealing with choppy seas by projectile vomiting toward a stable point on the horizon, I was riding the bowsprit positively giddy with the feeling of the sea...and it's a feeling that has fermented inside me in a big way ever since. I'm passionate about learning every nook and cranny of a ship, how to take care of her, how to properly steer her--everything. I'm a keen listener and a quick study (not to mention a damn fun guy to kick back with at the end of the day) and can assure I won't just be dead weight on board.

I'm long on time and short on money, so I'm hoping for the kind of arrangement where I can earn my berth by cleaning and taking night watches and such.

Anyway, if anyone spots this and I strike them as a match, shout me a private message/email and let's talk more!

Ahoy,
Regan
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Old 09-27-2012, 03:49 AM   #2
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If you contact the Darwin Sailing Club or Dinah Beach Cruising Yacht Association in Darwin, (they both have websites) and possibly google Sail Indonesia, you will get a feel for the time when racing/rally yachts will be returning to Darwin following the bluewater competitive season which generally starts in June. As many boats leave Darwin with crew comprising backpackers heading for Indo, there are many boats seeking fresh crew to make the return journey.

Most boats will not ask for payment, except for your share of the food expenses. However, don't expect the owners of these boats to be living on caught fish and boiled rice. Food for a week will cost you quite a few dollars as, post race, people like to eat well on the relaxing return part of the voyage.

Because of the movement of advancing weather patterns, most boats will be leaving Australia's north from April onward. They will head westward and there will be very few voyaging yachts indeed that will be sailing contrary to the movement of trade winds.

Cleaning, night watch and cooking duties are not negotiable. As crew you cannot avoid this responsibility and everyone else onboard will be equally taxed. Essentially you will have a cost free bed and travel. You will be expected to pay an equal share of most of the remainder.

Thus, the trip say from Bali, may well cost you twice the amount of a discount airfare (which are very cheap anyway), but the trip back through the archipeligo with a collection of good, adventurous souls will be extremely rewarding. Also, there is plenty of work available in Darwin for the under 30s, who wish to take advantage of the Aussie tourist/work visa.

Best of luck.
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Old 05-04-2013, 06:51 AM   #3
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Hello Auzzee
do you know at what month they go back to Darwin (approx.)?! And do you think it will be possible to take a bike on board? Would be understandable if not...
Thanks for your help!
Frank and Franka
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Old 05-04-2013, 05:09 PM   #4
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The move north from Darwin usually begins in April and boats will return in good weather conditions up to September. There will be many boats doing the trip but even the racers and cruisers will generally take a little time to cruise the Islands..some will firstly go on to Malaysia and Thailand to sail regattas there before returning. In short boats which leave Darwin now will return at any time over the next 5 months.

Bicycles may present a problem. On deck they can be dangerous and a full sized bicycle (especially in a bag) may stop enough water from a boarding wave, to rip out the stanchions and rails. Folding bikes are loess of a problem, but the boat would still need to be of reasonable size before the bike can be stowed below.
Cheers.
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Old 05-05-2013, 05:58 AM   #5
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Thank you for all the information! We heard there are many boats leaving in the next few month Australia but did not expect them to sail the opposite direction.
Since we have two bicycles it meight be a real problem. Do you think we have any chance at all? I just have been on very tiny sailing boats so don't know how much storage is there on a big one. We could take a plane from Bali but if we had the choise...
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Old 05-05-2013, 02:38 PM   #6
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If your bikes are full sized mountain style bikes, it is unlikely anyone will want to have them on deck. Getting them down below through the companionway could be difficult and, even on a 50'er, stowing 2 non folding bikes will present a problem.

As far as crewing is concerned, many of the Darwin based boats leaving Darwin will be taking casual crew who want to backpack through SE Asia. These crew will need to be replaced for the return journey.
Good luck.
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