HIHO Paddle Board Race 2014

  • By Ozzy
  • 18 Jul, 2014

HIHO Adventure Race, $10.000 Painkiller Cup, BVI:

The 2014 HIHO Adventure Race takes place in British Virgin Islands in the Caribbean. BVI are a group of over 50 islands in the Northern Caribbean (about 15 of them are inhabited). They are a perfect destination for Stand Up Paddling: the temperature is 25-30°C year round, the water is equally warm and turquoise, the scenery is spectacular. Most islands are within paddling distance of each other and it’s a great place for downwinders, too.

Once of the best ways to see everything of interest in a short time and get to paddle the most awesome routes is to participate in the HIHO Race.

WHAT IS THE HIHO?

The weeklong event offers a wonderful combination of adventure, racing and island discovery. Your home will be a luxury captained catamaran supplied by The Moorings. In the company of participants from around the World you will begin an odyssey through the beautiful British Virgin Islands. The HIHO fleet will visit Virgin Gorda, Anegada, The Baths, Beef Island, Sandy Cay, Jost Van Dyke, and more.

HOW DOES THE HIHO WORK?

There are 2 different race classes, the Fanatic Ray one design class for novice and intermediate paddlers and the Open Class on 14’ Race boards. Typically, there is a race every morning (shorter distance for one design, longer distance for the open class) with the finish on some stunning location where lunch is served (last year this included on stop Sir Richard Branson’s famous Neckar island). Then the afternoon is free to explore the scenery, embark on a downwind paddle or relax. Shortly before sunset it is time to head back to the Yachts, which will take the Riders to yet another stunning location for dinner.

WHAT IS THE HIGHLIGHT OF SUP RACES?

Highlight is the Painkiller Cup on Friday, a 12-16 mile downwind race team race from Tortola to Jost van Dyke with a whopping US$10.000 prize money. The report from 2012 HIHO painkiller cup is  here .

WHAT IS THE ACCOMMODATION LIKE?

It’s no secret that one of the best parts of the annual HIHO Race is the luxurious Moorings yacht accommodation. The bulk of the fleet will be domiciled aboard 46ft air-conditioned catamarans. Spacious and fast under sail, catamarans are ideal for watersports vacations in that they offer plenty of room for boards and other gear. The yachts include an experienced captain who will sail the boat while you race from island-to-island. The yachts include a complete kitchen, 4-cabins with adjoining bathrooms (called heads) plus stereo systems and a flat screen TV. There is also a dinghy and required safety gear.

I WANT TO BRING BY FRIEND/FAMILY BUT THEY DON’T PADDLE?

Aside from Stand Up Paddle, there are also Kite and Windsurf Races. If they want to give Stand Up Paddle a go, the British Virgin Islands are the perfect place to learn and the Open Class races are suitable for beginners. But even without participating in the races, they will never get bored, there is so much to see and do, swimming, snorkeling, exploring the islands, pirate parties….

WHAT WILL THE 2014 HIHO ITINERARY LOOK LIKE? WILL IT BE THE SAME AS 2012?

The beauty of this race is that it will take you to different places every year. This year it will stop at Anegada for example. Here is a first draft of the 2013 itinerary:

January 17th, 2014:

Container open - competitors can collect equipment

January 19th, 2014:

Registration at The Moorings - Board yachts - Afternoon departure for North Sound, Virgin Gorda

January 20th, 2014:

Racing in Eustatia Sound - Dinner in the North Sound

January 21st, 2014:

Anegada race - Dinner and dancing at Anegada Reef Hotel

Anegada is the northernmost of the British Virgin Islands, a group of islands which form part of the archipelago of the Virgin Islands. It lies approximately 15 miles (24 km) north of Virgin Gorda. Anegada is formed from coral and limestone, rather than being of volcanic origin. While the other islands are mountainous, Anegada is flat and low. Anegada is known for miles of white sand beaches and the 18-mile (29 km)-long Horseshoe Reef, the largest barrier coral reef in the Caribbean, and the fourth largest on earth. It is also famous for it’s lobster.

January 22nd, 2014:

Morning racing & kitesurfing - Afternoon yachts race to The Baths - Dinner at the stunning beach club setting of CocoMaya

The Baths are a sublime jumbled collection of sky-high granite boulders by the sea. The rocks are made of volcanic java from about 70million years ago and form a series of grottoes that fill with water and shafts of kaleidoscopic sunlight and look truly otherworldly.

January 23rd, 2014:

Race to Beef Island - Pirate party at The Last Resort

January 24th, 2014:

10.000 US$ Painkiller Cup - lunch at Soggy Dollar Bar - Dinner and dancing on Jost Van Dyke

On Friday the painkiller Cup will take place. A 12-15 mile downwind race with an awesome finish at Jost van Dyke’s infamous “Soggy Dollar” bar, which takes it’s name from the sailor’s swimming ashore to spend wet bills. It’s also the bar that invented the painkiller, the BVI’s delicious, yet lethal cocktail of rum, coconut, pineapple orange juice and nutmeg.

January 25th, 2014:

Racing at Little Thatch - Awards ceremony at The Moorings

HOW TO GET TO THE BVI?

You will have to find a flight to Beef Island. From Europe, you can fly with KLM or Air France to Saint Martin and then connect to Beef island via Liat, or you can fly in via Puerto Rico or the US Virgin Islands (St. Thomas), typically with American Airlines

Further information & registration.

Our Weekly Fresh, Useful Information!

By Ozzy 06 Aug, 2017

Pinel Island is a well known destination for snorkeling but once you get there, it's not obvious to find the best spot. Whether you get there by kayak, paddle board or ferry, you need to take that opportunity to discover and explore the underwater world..! With its flat waters and its little to no current, the bay of Cul-de-Sac is one of the most accessible place for snorkeling, even for small kids and beginners.

So here are our top 3 recommendations:

  • Our number one spot is located at Little Key, which is the island before Pinel Island. Once on the tiny deserted beach, you can either start on the left or on the right of the beach. The left side will make you follow the shallow waters before the point of the island. That spot is interesting because of its easy access and its calm waters. All you have to do is to follow the underwater reef until the point, then you can come back (or try to find the numerous sea turtles) or keep snorkeling around the island.
By Ozzy & Fanny 05 Jul, 2017

Living in Saint-Martin has many assets to offer. And one of them is that we have Islands closed by to travel to in no time, either for a day trip or for the week end. An Island Hoping paradise for everybody: the locals and the visitors! 

Anguilla is the British Island located at the North of Saint-Martin, less than 4 miles away. It is famous for its beautiful beaches and its crystal clear water. This is the perfect Island for a relaxing getaway (beach, snorkeling, water activities…) since besides the magnificent coast, there is not much to do over there. 

Saba is located at the South West of Sint-Marteen and belongs to the Dutch. It is actually the highest land of Netherland! The landscape is the opposite from Anguilla’s (which is absolutely flat) and the particularity of this island is… It is a beachless Caribbean Island. How incredible, right? But no worries, you still have a lot to do over there, mostly sportive activities! Basically, Saba is well known for its beautiful hikes in the mountain with thousands of different plants & amazing deep dives with colorful reefs. This is a great alternative from the “beach style” vacations that most of the Caribbean Islands usually offer.

And the last, but not the least: Saint-Barth . We are sure that you have already heard of it, isn’t it? ☺ Saint-Barth is located at the west of Saint-Martin, and is accessible either by ferry (30 minutes of ferry ride), by charter plane (12 minutes of flight), with a helicopter (10 minutes of flight) or by private boat. This island is a pure gem! Famous to be the destination for the famous and rich people, this French island has everything to satisfy everybody’s tastes (but still pricey)! Hilly landscapes with amazing point of views of the deep blue & turquoise Caribbean sea, white sand beaches, great shopping (!!), 5 stars resorts or charming casual ones, gastronomic restaurants, hikes on the wild side, natural pools… And of course, all the water activities you can think of!

By Ozzy 16 Jun, 2017

Are you thinking of going to Pinel Island during your stay on Saint-Martin?

First, this is definitely a great idea that should be at the top of your “to do list”. Pinel is a must see, and spend the day over there is a guarantee of an unforgettable experience. 

Second, there is nothing easier! 

In Cul de Sac ferry station, the boats are departing everyday (except if the weather condition does not allow it) and at a very frequent times: every 30 minutes.

Basically, during high season, the ferries run from Monday through Sunday, from 9h30am until 5:00pm (same opening hours as Caribbean Paddling all year long ;)). During low season, the last ferry back from Pinel Island leaves at 4:00pm and you’d better not miss it if you do not want to spend the night with our favorite iguanas!

To sum up, in low season, renting your gear through us to spend the day on Pinel gives you an extra hour in P.A.R.A.D.I.S.E.

More time to enjoy the sun, the white sand beaches, the turquoise water, some snorkelling & paddling in the bay, and why not one last homemade cocktail? ;)

You will find bellow the ferry schedule to go to Pinel Island, according to the time of the year you will be visiting our friendly island. 

By Ozzy 12 Jun, 2017
By Ozzy 26 May, 2017
The Caribbean are well known for the warm sun, white sand and shimmering turquoise water. When you visit Saint-Martin, the most important thing you want to do is to spend a day on one of the 37 beaches of this little paradise! … But when it is raining, getting wet on a beach a chair is not really attracting! Here are our recommendations to fully enjoy your day, despite the bad weather.
By Ozzy 25 Apr, 2017

A lot of people ask this question: how can I reach you and/or Pinel Island? For us residents of St Martin - St Maarten, this is quite simple: just follow the road! It really is simple since there is only one road on our island! But, for everyone else, it's not as easy.

There are three possible places you might be starting from...

  • a cruiseship.
  • somewhere on St Maarten.
  • somewhere on St Martin.
By Ozzy 01 Mar, 2017
Hey guys, while surfing the web lastly, I've found this great footage of St Maarten. That video was shot from a DJI Phantom drone over our beautiful landscapes. I let you watch the short movie and I hope you will enjoy it.
By Ozzy 18 Jan, 2017
I frequently do some research on the web, trying to find the best content over the billion pages of Internet. Sometimes you find interesting content like this video below. It is quite amazing how a different perspective can definitely change the look of the place you live or work every day.
By Ozzy 15 Jan, 2017

This week, Mother Nature sent us a gift by providing us with a strong swell coming from storm Alex located in the Atlantic. That was the opportunity for us to test our brand new F-One Madeiro  paddle boards in real conditions. My good friend Johann was in the party, and Likka  was on the beach for the pictures.

After checking the swell at Baie aux Prunes, we finally ended at Anse des Pères for some nice take-off.

By Ozzy 01 Jan, 2017

Today , I met my new friend Barry and his girlfriend for another trip to St Martin! The meeting point: Maho Beach at the end of the runway of the airport Juliana !

There are 2 years , Barry had hired me 2 paddle boards had been already photographed at Maho Beach . His picture was even selected as picture of the year by the magazine SUPconnect.com  ! That was in 2011. This year, he returns by St Martin with his friends, and gave me a call about doing another photo shoot. There was just to bring 3 standup paddle boards before heading to the beach . After drinking a beer together at the legendary Sunset Cafe , it was time to get to the water.

After a beach start , we paddled 50m and we are aligned with the runway , we had only to wait for the aircrafts, hoping to see big ones! I 've been here several times with friends to Maho to watch planes from the beach , but never ON the water .. Barry gave me the opportunity this year and it was amaaazing !

The gallery below is my own selection with my GoPro  . I expect pictures of Barry to complete this super afternoon stand up paddle in Maho !

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