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Launch of world record around the 2 Americas

toptotop-1st-circumnavigation-of-2-americas-in-fig-8.jpg1st circumnavigation around the 2 Americas in a figure 8 to our last 2 TOPs of 7: Mount Denali in Alaska, Mount Vinson in Antarctica.
More pictures here from Gustvo Miller and here!
2013-03-21_panama_marina-flamenco_presentation_sgs-customers-toptotop.JPGOn the 21st of March 2013 at Flamenco Marina it was the start of the 1st circumnavigation of the 2 Americas in a figure 8. Thanks to the support of Flamenco Marina and SGS we had a great event. Among the many participants there was the Swiss Honorary Consul to Panama, many SGS employees and customers.
2013-03-21_panama_marina-flamenco_presentation-2.JPGAfter a presentation by Dario, there was a cocktail and everybody was able to visit the expedition sailboat Pachamama.
2013-03-21_panama_marina-flamenco_presentation_powerwomen-sabine-ana-karen.JPGMany thanks again to the core organization team – the 3 power women: Sabine from TOPtoTOP, Ana from Flamenco Marina and Karen from SGS Panama.
We are sailing soon North towards the Arctic and looking forward to be back in Flamenco Marina in 2 years time when we are heading to Antarctica.

Pirates Bay – Tobago

More pictures here!
2012-12-10_tobago-charlottesville_school-2.JPG2012-12-10_tobago-charlottesville_school-1.JPGChildren enjoying the TOPtoTOP activities in Tobago
From Surinam we sailed to Tobago. The first 2 days we were so fast, that the prop started to spin. We hived by and stopped the boat so Dario was able to dive and check the prop. But the reason for the spinning prop was the speed. The wind was dropping soon after and the last days were slow.
After 4 days sailing we anchored in the Pirates Bay, near Charlottesville. This is the eastern tip of Tobago. Already on the first day we got in touch with the Rasta culture: cooooool!
During our clean up games with the local school we hardly could find any trash, – so clean is Charlottesville. Congratulation to the people of Tobago!
Tobago is a wonderful, relaxed island with jungle and mountains to go for a hike, waterfalls to do canyoning, beautiful shore for sea-kayaking, sandy beaches to surf and reefs to dive. Charlottesville has a lot of fish.
2012-12-04_tobago-pirates-bay_per-with-fish-2.JPGOur friend Per on SY Arctic, we met last time in St. Helena Island, got a big fish and shared it with all the sailors in the bay. He was in the water trying to kill the fish with a knife. When he finally won the fight, it attracted a shark. But luckily Per saved the fish into his dinghy in time.
End November we had to say goodbye to Christina: In these more than 3 months she was an excellent teacher to Salina and Andri and a perfect deckhand. She was very flexible: Besides the night watches, she was teaching the children constantly for 4 hours a day. With her charming nature and big heart she was integrated in the family in no time. Beside her function as teacher and deckhand, she was always busy and saw the work. – Free diving on open Ocean she cleared once the keel from a big fishing net. – Even on long passages and worse conditions she contributed to a nice atmosphere on board and became on this journey part of the family. Many thanks to Christina for your great effort! We will miss her as a good friend and hope to see her back on the TOPtoTOP Expedition very soon. – Salina joined Christina for a month to Switzerland, so that she was able to join her school and see the extended family. She will be back at Xmas together with Meret.
On the 6th of December we had Santa thanks to SY Shady Lady. The pirates from all boats climbed the hill and find Santa coming out of the jungle. Every child had to promise to do better from now on and got a present.
Our last school invitation before Xmas will be on Thursday. We already started with preparing the boat for the leg to Alaska. Turtle Pack in Australia ship us some flexible tanks we use in the very North. Bucher&Walt replaced our damaged GPS and thanks to Tracker also in Switzerland you will go to see our position.
Good News: Peaks Yacht Services will haul us out for free so that we can do the underwater paint for Pachamama and all the maintenance work starting on the 2nd of January 2013. Budget Marine Trinidad goes to support our project as well. Our partner ICOM Australia goes to support us with a ICOM M-500TR Transponder. This will be another great device to improve the safety on board. Thanks to ICOM Australia big ships will see the AIS signal of the TOPtoTOP Expedition sailboat also in the worst conditions.
Insider note: We had to postpone the installation of the LI-batteries from the NTU University, because they will not arrive in Trinidad in time.
Thanks to Swiss Honorary Consul Michele Khan in Trinidad we got in contact with Swiss hotelier Jörg Wickihalder who invited us into the Magdelena Grand Beach Resort where we will probably do a presentation begin of January:
2012-12-14_tobago-magdelena-grand-resort_joerg-wickihalder.JPGJörg Wickihalder – Merry Xmas and a happy New Year 2013!
2012-12-08_tobago-charlottesville_darian-friend-andri-noe.JPG Darian-Karsha-Andri-Noe. Thanks to Workshop Sea Tours in Charlotteville we are able to do internet and to wash our laundry! Karsha is the daughter of Lenore and Curtis.

Noe 1st swimming alone on the 12.12.2012 at 12 h!!

Sun power on Tahiti

There is plenty of sun on Tahiti! A good example is Mr. Michel Derhan. With his solar panels he produces 5 kW to run everything in his house. The remaining power he sells for a good price to the public net. Like this he does not need an expensive battery bank.

He also produces his hot water with the sun. The water flows through black tubes covered with glass on his roof. In the background you can see Pachamama. Michel Derhan offered TOPtoTOP his mooring for the time we spent in Switzerland. – Thank you very much, Michel!

Sabine thanks also to Optician Yves-Louis Perret from Bienne, Switzerland. His sun glasses are really top for the Southern sun!

Back on Pachamama we are busy to set the sails and to transport all our equipment stored at Michel Derhan’s place back to the boat. Fortunately our children like the life wests from Bucher&Walt.
Coming from the Swiss winter they were not used to the heat, sweat a lot and a cool bath was always welcome.
We could not safe our batteries. The person looking after Pachamama did not control the water level. 25 l were missing! Batteries in Tahiti are very expensive, so we are still looking for a solution. Anke Altermann from California, who writes sometimes a commend, was helping a lot with a good contact to a battery manufacturer. Fortunately we have our Megasol solar panels and Superwind wind generators, like this we are able to run our system (fridge etc.) during the day.
Finally a surprise: Salina makes “kaki” and “pipi” in the pot! Her birthday will be next Wednesday the 11.4., call if you like to know how to do it: 00689 24 47 40 (-12 h).

… and here a nice Email from Michel Hueter, EDA, Presence Switzerland:
“Lieber Dario,
mit Freude kann ich Dir bes

Pumalin Park: clean up and school visits

We are in on of the most beautiful parks on our planet. Our neighbours are dolphins, sea lions and black necked swans. Our anchorage is in Puillan fjord. From here it is about 2 hours to a native tree plantation to reproduce the 3000 years old Alerce trees which all were logged in the past. As a climber I was fascinated about the 900 m big wall here in the Vodudahue Valley, – like El Capitan in Yosemite Park, California.
We have also a wonderful time with the initiators of the park, Kris and Doug Tompkins. They live about 20 minutes from Pachamama in Renihue fjord where Salina enjoyed a warm bath in the sink. Yesterday they were on Pachamama and we offered the Swiss meals Aelplermacaroni and Plain in Pignia.
Between clean ups and school visits we spent our time fishing and doing the laundery, working on the boat…
CLEAN UP’s on Pumalin’s fjords:
A lot of the trash we found came from the salmon industry:
antifouling canes
beer canes
clean up on Vodudahue beach
cleaning gives satisfaction
fishing nets and ropes
plastic bottles and oil canes
SCHOOL VISITS in the neighbourhood of the park:
Here some pictures:
Annemarie in action
drawing contest
finding solutions
funny games
great solutions
kids of Amarillo
kids of Chaiten
local beauties
plenty of good ideas
Sabine in action
Salina in action
TOPtoTOP workshop
Dario in action
trash game
trash sketch
3 solutions
The next 3 days we will try to climb volcano Michinmahuida

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