Brutus with a puppy.
April 15, 2019
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BigKanu Raja Ampat Charter – Seasickness No More

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BigKanu Raja Ampat Charter - Seasickness No More

The thing that gives you sea sickness is being moved in 2 planes at once. So when you are on the deck of a heaving yacht or phinisi, you've got no chance. To a lesser extent, the awkward movement of a catermeran is the same. As for motor boats without keels, take a sick bag for sure. If however, you can stay on a line, like a train going down a track...well put it this way, what was the last time you heard of someone getting train sick.

On Bigkanu, we are a lot different to any western Trimarans, as we carry 90% of our boat load on one long hull, with only 5% lift coming from the two side outrigger floats.

Bigkanu in in effect a long canoe, with small stabilizers.

So we are basically a long telegraph pole, and we surf a telegraph pole. Which brings us back the train analogy, where moving mainly in one line, does not induce seasickness.

But a choppy sea, even for a boat as flat and wide as the 12m span wide Bigkanu, can still upset the tender middle-ear to stomach equilibrium. And you get a short sharp nasty sea condition, when wind and current are pushing in opposite directions, (as you get near a big moon, fir example) and the 3 hour exposed trip to Wayag can make some feel crook). ( Most of the rest of Raja Ampat is pretty flat, thankyfully).

Years ago as a kid, I got terribly seasick.

They say that seasickness, sadly, is one of the few afflictions you cannot die of.

Damn it, crossing Bass Straight, death would surely be more attractive that A option.pappap. There were the wrist bands with a little button lump that was supposed to hit a key acupunctural pressure point, but they were pointless. Eating ginger helped a bit, but Arnotts Ginger biscuits are tougher than teeth. Copper bands? Nup.

Dramamine was the best of the pill cures, and remains so, but cure by pill has its use by limits.

In my case, I forced myself to face my fear by heading off around the world by yacht, and while the first week was shitty, eventually my wonk gave in, and I conquered the atrocious mal de mer. But keep me on land for a month( a practise that is neither safe nor hygienic) and put me on one if those radically skew fast ferries to Gili, and I need the top deck.

Basically, a great cure for seasickness, is a sleepover in a gently rolling bay, before heading out to sea the next day.

But there is this new technology on the market called the Relief Band...a $170 thing that looks like a wristwatch, which gives of a small electric pulse, with the aid of a gel, which you can faintly feel under your wrist, and somehow the wonderful little fucker, breaks that messaging between middle ear, brain and stomach, and it gives almost instant relief, unlike Dramamine, which you would probably spew up before it dissolves.

Bigkanu is ridiculously stable, and we have done 5000 sea miles, with a free standing fridge, and a bunch of bottles on a stainless bench, that never move an inch, even in a horrendous squall off Sumba and Sumbawa, where swell comes 5m high...those bottles do not slide. Bigkanu is as flat as a f..cking house boat.

We keep a new Relief Band aboard, and I think we can make claim to be the most seasick-proof boat in Indonesia, on a tonnage basis. So clearly my personal issues around seasickness have had an impact on my empathy for sufferers, and my determination to make boating happy for the most wobbly of middle ears.