Learn Adventure Kitesurfing and Leadership in Brazil 2018

I first visited Brazil on a kitesurfing trip in 2008, and I’ve been doing kite trips there with with SurfinSemFim since 2015. Over these last few years I’ve traveled the entire northern coast of Brazil by kite, from Natal to Sāo Luís, and I’m now designing and leading custom trips in some of my most favorite places along the way.

For 2018 I’m introducing two very unique itineraries: a slower, friends & family-oriented trip and a kitesurfing adventure skills and leadership development trip (details below).

SurfinSemFim

These are both in addition to the full calendar of short-, medium- and long-distance kitesurfing trips that SurfinSemFim offers throughout the year, and all SurfinSemFim trips including my own will introduce you to the joy of travel by kite in Brazil, and to the global SurfinSemFim Tribe, a community of like-minded lovers of the life outside.

Your feedback is very important to me, so please don’t hesitate to indicate your interest!

AdventureSemFim: Dec 1-8

As good as it feels to be good at something, it feels even better to get good at something. On top of that is the joy and satisfaction that we get from sharing our experiences with others through skilled leadership.

Ready to level up?

This trip is designed for those of you who want to go beyond participating as a client and learn kitesurfing adventure travel and on-the-water leadership, in the context of a long distance kitesurfing trip. If you are ready to level up, AdventureSemFim will give you the skills you need to plan and guide your own adventure kiting trips, opening a window to a new world of kitesurfing adventure.

Bowen guiding on the water with SurfinSemFim

We’ll meet on Saturday December 1 in Barra Grande, which is several hours by car from the airport in Fortaleza (FOR), and much closer to the small airport in Parnaiba (PHB). I will be coming directly from the end of my slower, friends & family-oriented trip — combine the two to get the best of both worlds!

On Dec 2 we’ll leave Barra Grande and spend the next few days making our way towards and through the spectacular Parnaiba river delta. We’ll spend two nights there in the heart of the delta at Ilha dos Poldros, before continuing on to Tutoia and then finally to Atins. We’ll have time the final day for a side trip to the otherworldly Lençóis Maranhenses before ending our time together. Most people fly out of Sāo Luís when ending trips in Atins.

The itinerary is designed to include a combination of moderate and challenging days on the water, as well as plenty of time for leadership training, workshops and group discussion. This trip is not intended to be vacation — the schedule will be rigorous and days will start early and end late. That said, the satisfaction and accomplishment that you will enjoy upon completion will more than compensate for the hard work that you’ll be putting in along the way.

Some of the skills that we will focus on will include:

  • Long distance kitesurfing
  • Leadership, on and off the water 
  • Gear selection and packing — see my article on packing like a guide
  • Supported / unsupported travel by kite
  • Route finding / navigation 
  • Rescue and emergency skills
  • Harnessing Flow as a leader and as part of the life outside
SurfinSemFim group – photo Bruna Arcangelo Toledo

Along with leadership skills, this itinerary gives you exposure to a hugely varied landscape — from dunes and lagoons to the mangroves and rivers of the Parnaiba delta to the idyllic village of Atins and the incredible Lençois Maranhenses.

The AdventureSemFim trip will include include 8 days and 7 nights, traveling entirely on the water — a true kitesurfing journey, departing and arriving directly from beautiful small hotels along the way. The cost for the trip will be $2800 including accommodation, meals, guides, support vehicles, and training (but not including airfare or airport transfers).

Incredible Ilha dos Poldros in the Parnaiba delta

We’ll cover distances of up to 70+km on the water on some days of this trip. This multi-day, long distance journey is suitable for experienced kitesurfers with previous long distance experience and in good physical condition, with equipment in excellent condition.

Equipment: this trip is suitable for twin tip and surfboard riders. We realize that you may also love to ride a foil board, but this is not a foil trip. Feel free to bring your foil to Brazil to use before and after this trip though!

I’ve written a special FAQ that should answer many of the questions that you might have about visiting Brazil.  Please check out the FAQ and then don’t hesitate to contact us  to indicate your interest and with any further questions.

Ready to level up? Yes you are!

Your feedback is very important to me, so please don’t hesitate to indicate your interest!

Here is the full-length documentary film that we shot in 2016 and released in 2017. Enjoy the vibe and I hope to see you in Brazil!

 

Discover Wind Land in Brazil: Nov 25-29, 2018

I first visited Brazil on a kitesurfing trip in 2008, and I’ve been doing kite trips there with with SurfinSemFim since 2015. Over these last few years I’ve traveled the entire northern coast of Brazil by kite, from Natal to Sāo Luís, and I’m now designing and leading custom trips in some of my most favorite places along the way.

In 2018 I’ll be leading two unique itineraries: a slower, friends & family-oriented trip (details below) and a kitesurfing adventure skills and leadership development trip.

SurfinSemFim

These are both in addition to the full calendar of short-, medium- and long-distance kitesurfing trips that SurfinSemFim offers throughout the year, and all SurfinSemFim trips including my own will introduce you to the joy of travel by kite in Brazil, and to the global SurfinSemFim Tribe, a community of like-minded lovers of the life outside.

This is the first announcement of these trips. Your feedback is very important to me, so please don’t hesitate to indicate your interest!

Preá to Camocim: Nov 25-29

Inspired by the uniquely beautiful environment of northern Brazil, the spirit of discovery at the natural pace of sailing, and a desire for experience above all, this will be a meditation on the joy of travel by kite and life by the sea.

SurfinSemFim group – photo Bruna Arcangelo Toledo

There are direct flights from Miami to Fortaleza on Friday the 23rd and a quick connection on Saturday the 24th. I recommend coming in a day or two early if possible to relax and warm up with some local kiting and a visit to the legendary town of Jericoacoara.

We’ll meet on Sunday November 25 at the beautiful and unique Rancho do Peixe in Preá. After dinner and a first night there, we’ll start our downwind journey the next day down the beach in Preá and then around the legendary Pedra Furada to land at the dune in Jericoacoara.

In Jeri we’ll stay at Vila Kalango, another beautiful locally-designed small hotel perfectly suited for a group of kiters traveling down the coast. On day 3 we’ll sail on from Jeri to Tatajuba, and then from Tatajuba to Camocim on day 4. Along the way we’ll have plenty of time to ride waves and practice downwind kite skills, as well as hit the flat water lagoons. From Camocim we can arrange for you to return back to Rancho do Peixe, move onwards to continue your trip, or transfer back to the airport for departure. Another option would be to join me as I continue onwards to Barra Grande for the Kitesurfing Adventure Skills  trip that I’ll be leading Dec 1-8.

This trip is designed to provide for plenty of kiting including some moderate downwinders as well as time to relax and enjoy the environment and each others’ company. We will begin each day with a warmup and briefing session and end the day with a delicious, healthy dinner prepared from local ingredients.

The itinerary includes include 5 days and 4 nights, traveling entirely on the water — a true kitesurfing journey, departing and arriving directly from beautiful small hotels along the way. The cost for the trip will be $1200 including accommodation, meals, guides, support vehicles, coaching (not including airfare or airport transfers).

The focus of this trip is unhurried experience rather than distance. The itinerary gives you exposure to a widely varied landscape — from dunes and lagoons to fishing villages, rivers and palm-ringed oases.

Extensions: If time permits, I recommend extending your trip for a few days at the end to continue down the coast to the west. You could go to Barra Grande and kite there for a few days, continue (as I will) from this trip to my kitesurfing adventure skills trip, or go a bit farther to the idyllic village of Atins and the Lençóis Maranhenses. These places are hard to get to, truly off the beaten path, and very worth spending some extra time in!

Equipment: the downwind portions of this trip are suitable for twin tip and surfboard riders. If you also ride a foil board, feel free to bring it to use on the in-between days.

What about Thanksgiving? I realize that some of you may be thinking of traveling over the Thanksgiving holiday. This year SurfinSemFim and Rancho do Peixe are hosting a global kitesurfing competition the week of Thanksgiving, and so we can’t do group trips that week. If you are interested in coming in early for the event, please indicate that in your inquiry — space will fill up fast!

I’ve written a special FAQ that should answer many of the questions that you might have about visiting Brazil.  Please check out the FAQ and then don’t hesitate to contact us  to indicate your interest and with any further questions.

Bowen guiding on the water with SurfinSemFim

Want to kite with us in Brazil this year?

Yes you do!

Here is the full-length documentary film that we shot in 2016 and released in 2017. Enjoy the vibe and I hope to see you in Brazil!

 

Preparing for Adventure: Packing for Adventure Kitesurfing

Preparing ourselves properly for adventure sets us up for safety, but not only that — preparation makes adventure possible.

“People don’t seek to minimize risk. They seek to optimize it… We’re hard-wired to enjoy risk [because] there we can still be both confident in our experience and confronting the chaos that helps us develop.” — Jordan B. Peterson, 12 Rules for Life

We need more adventure in our lives. Real adventure involves uncertainty and risk, which creates anxiety and fear. That fear has a message for us: prepare. If we prepare properly for adventure, we reduce both the uncertainty and the risk. At the same time, we want to be just ready enough — we don’t want to waste time and energy over-preparing or over-packing.

All my gear laid out all together

So, how do we prepare? One key aspect of preparing is knowing what and how to pack. It’s easy to be certain that you have everything you need, and nothing more. Make a packing list, use it , and refine it.

I first visited Brazil on a kitesurfing trip in 2008, and I’ve been doing kite trips there with with SurfinSemFim since 2015. Over these last few years I’ve traveled the entire northern coast of Brazil by kite, along with trips to the Philippines, South Africa, Micronesia, Papua New Guinea, Hawaii, Mexico, and many other places.

My packing strategy has been informed by all of these journeys, and most of all by an unsupported (no vehicles) trip that I did with my fellow guide Andre Penna from Natal to Fortaleza in November of 2016, and more recent trips where I worked as a guide with SurfinSemFim. Whether I’m traveling as part of a group or working as a guide, and whether or not I have vehicle/boat support, I always start my packing as if I am guiding and traveling unsupported.

Preparing your gear properly is also part of acting, traveling and adventuring responsibly. When you’re prepared you create the conditions for success, for yourself and your teammates. When you’re not prepared, you create the pre-conditions for trouble, and not just for yourself. Putting yourself in danger is your own choice; putting others in danger due to your choices is irresponsible and unacceptable.

In short, to maximize your readiness for adventure, think and pack like a guide. Let’s break it all down.

Kite Gear

If you start a trip with gear in poor condition, you’re not setting off on an adventure, you’re setting yourself up for an emergencyYour kite gear must be in excellent condition. You cannot responsibly consider undertaking an adventure, even as a client, with gear that you are not certain of. Using the packing list, check all your gear well before your trip to be sure you know what condition it’s in, and do any maintenance or replacement well in advance.

Only change one thing at a time. You’re already going to a new place, so don’t set off on a trip with equipment that is new to you. It’s fine to replace things, but it’s best to replace them with the same or similar model. You want all of your attention available for the experience. If you change something up, you’re adding variables that may distract you from being where you are.

Kites

Use kites that you are comfortable with. I fly Boardriding Maui Cloud kites because I love how versatile, compact, and nimble they are, but you can use whatever, as long as you are quite familiar with the kites. For an unsupported trip, you will want a kite with as much range as possible — that is, a kite that behaves well when overpowered and that also offers good low-end power.

Boards

Bring a board that you know and love, and that is comfortable to ride. Especially for long distance trips it’s good to have some flex in the board, a cushy deck pad, and the option of using footstraps or going strapless. The shape of the board may not be as critical as you think, because you will be more focused on covering ground and riding a wide variety of water features along the way than staying in one place and riding perfect waves. I have used various boards successfully, including a Firewire Vader and several F-One production boards. The Vader is great because it’s fast, goes well upwind (when necessary), and works as well in high wind as it does in light air. On the other hand the Vader is a bit stiff, and doesn’t have footstrap inserts. The F-One surfboards are cushier and have inserts, so that’s what I’m using this season.

Parts

Make sure your list includes all of the components, tools and spare parts that you might need. I once broke a fin on my way to Ilha dos Poldros — not a place with any spares available. I was very gratified to have a set of spare fins with me, and the tools required to swap them out. Don’t be the person whose trip is cut short by a missing screw.

Foil boards

I love foiling and foils are incredible tool for exploration. They also have their limitations — most of all, foils require some depth of water, which can make it quite challenging to explore new territory. Foils also don’t mix well with other types of boards — you move much faster and at different angles to the wind. If your team is bringing foils, great, if not, stick with what the team is riding.

On the water equipment

This category includes everything else that you will wear or carry on your body (outside of your pack) while you are in the water. What I present here is what I would carry for an unsupported or while guiding; you may need to carry less as a client or with support, but again, if you want to be ready, pack like a guide.

Waterproof backpack: There are more and more water packs becoming available. We’ve been using the Watershed Animas pack very successfully for the last couple of years — it’s big enough, totally waterproof, and has proven to be very durable. I’ve also used a Klymit Splash 25 or a Watershed Big Creek when I wanted something smaller than the Animas.

Small dry bags: I use a couple of smaller roll-top dry bags inside my pack to keep things organized and for a second layer of protection from water and sand.

Sunglasses: Especially late in the day, it’s important to wear some good polarized water sunglasses to protect your eyes from glare and prevent eye strain, pterygiums, cataracts, other forms of eye damage — and just to be able to see when heading west into the setting sun. I wear Kurtis Surf Goggles — grab a pair of the Necker or Duke model and use coupon code BOWEN for a discount at checkout.

Sun protection: I’ve tried various solutions over the years and at this point I aim to cover as much as possible, especially if I’m in the water for most of the day, several days in a row. I come home with less of a tan, but I don’t have to fiddle as much with sunscreen. On top I wear a hooded rash guard like the Patagonia RØ Hoody or XCEL Drylock Hoodie. On the bottom I wear a sunga (aka “speedo” to most Americans; I get mine from Carioca, in the classic cut) to hold everything in place, a pair of thin tights for sun protection, and a pair of lightweight quick-drying surf trunks (like Patagonia Light & Variable) so I don’t look like a complete moron.

Shoes: For tropical trips I only need three pairs of shoes: Havaianas (sandals or “flip-flops”), trail running shoes, and reef boots. When I’m in the water somewhere where I don’t know the terrain 100%, I wear reef boots in case I run into something sharp. You never know when you’re going to get out of the water and walk somewhere, so I throw my Havaianas in my pack so I have them handy.

Tow line: I carry a tow line rigged to my harness. I use about 6 meters of 5m-6m Dyneema/Amsteel line tied to the back of my harness on one end and to a carabiner on the other end. The line is coiled so that it remains secure while I’m riding and can be easily unclipped and thrown to someone or something that needs a tow. Only carry rescue gear if you know how — and are willing — to use it. 

GPS/Radio/Satellite: Emergency communications gear can get complicated. Depending on situation I will have some combination of GPS tracking, marine radio and satellite communications device. In general the minimum for overseas trips is a GPS watch and a Garmin inReach device for emergency comms. If I’m working with a team on the water, we may use marine radios, but they are hard to make proper use of and so we rely for the most part on hand signals. Be sure that your inReach is actually in reach so that you can use it in case of emergency; if it’s buried in your bag you probably won’t be able to get to it when you need it. I keep mine in a small waterproof case stuffed inside my rash guard.

Spares and repairs

I carry extra fins, spare hardware, kite canopy repair tape, kite bladder  repair tape (Blenderm), board repair tape and/or quick epoxy, some bits of kite line, and whatever tools I might need (hopefully very few). Some zip ties, duct tape and threadlocker (aka Loctite) can also come in handy.

Camping

Hammock: One of my favorite things about traveling in Brazil has been learning about the hammock (rede in Portuguese, pronounced “hedge-E”). In Brazil you see hammocks everywhere! In the tropical climate they are cheap, versatile, compact, comfortable, and perfectly suited to the environment. I’ve learned to carry one whenever I’m in the tropics — I was very happy to have my hege handy last December when we arrived at a small fishing port at 0200; I set it up and grabbed a few hours of peaceful sleep before dawn broke and we continued our journey to Ilha de Lençóis. Get a lightweight hammock with a built in net and 20m of strong lightweight cord to string it up with.

In addition to a hammock, I pack a small lightweight backpack for hiking and running, a water filter, a water bladder, and a multi-tool.

Clothing

One of the great things about traveling in the tropics is that you don’t need much clothing! My basic list is 2 pairs of surf trunks, 2 lightweight wool or capilene t-shirts, a puffy jacket (Patagonia Micro Puff), a sun hat, a head/neck scarf (like a Buff) and a couple of pairs of quick-drying underwear (my favorite is Saxx). Pants? It’s usually too hot to wear pants, but for sleeping out and airplane rides I love my Lady Pants

Lady pants!

Small stuff

Ear plugs! I do have a pair of fancy noise-cancelling headphones but I only use them to listen to music or watch movies from my iPad. For sleep and noise protection I use cheap hardware-store earplugs. Crying baby? Pre-dawn roosters? Jet engine exhaust? Best 50¢ I’ve ever spent.

Sunscreen: my favorite is Sunbum face stick for my face and hands. If you cover up as I describe above you won’t need anything else, aside from your favorite lip balm.

Headlamp: I always travel with a headlamp (these days, a USB-rechargeable  model with red light mode for night vision, like the Black Diamond ReVolt). Pack like a guide, and have a headlamp when you need one. You will.

Insurance: Gavin McClurg has a great article about insurance for adventure sports, so I won’t duplicate all of that here. The bottom line is that most travel and medical evacuation insurance does not cover kitesurfing. I currently use Dogtag, which does cover kiting and other adventure sports, and has excellent customer service.

Laminated emergency contact card: Make up a document with your identification (DOB, passport number) and insurance and emergency contact information, print it out and then go to Kinko’s or whatever and have it laminated so that it’s durable and waterproof. Carry this on your person at all times.

Fiber pills: You want to poop, right? Travel disrupts my digestion, and I often end up constipated. I pack a jar of all natural fiber capsules (like RenewLife Fiber Smart) and down four of them every morning with a large glass of water. Problem solved.

First Aid

I pack a small prefab first aid kit with a few additions including a pair of gloves, safety scissors, a few tablets of Pepto-Bismol, Immodium, Alka-Selzter, ibuprofen and a tube of Surfer’s Salve. Ask your doctor for a prescription for some oral antibiotics (like Keflex) to take with you in case you get an infection and can’t get to a pharmacy right away. 

Training: I recently completed a two-day Wilderness First Aid course hosted by NOLS and although it took some time it was very worthwhile.

Electronics

This is all up to you, but I often have a bunch of cameras and gadgets with me. One thing that’s come in very handy is a multi-port USB charger. I recently found one this gadget from LOOP that combines a universal AC plug adapter with a four-port USB outlet – very handy and quite light too!

Packing on the water – unsupported

When I’m traveling by kite on the water without any support from land I use a dedicated packing list. I want everything I need but nothing more, and I want to be as light as possible. If you know anything about light weight backpacking you can leverage these skills here as well. Backpackinglight.com is a great resource.

Pump: You will need a kite pump, and if you are carrying your own gear, you will want a small one. We use this Intex hand pump – note that you may have to graft on a fitting to match your kite valves. I was able to scavenge the proper fitting for my Cloud kites from an old full-size kite pump.

Packing on the water – guiding

When I’m guiding a group on the water I carry many of the same things that I would have for unsupported travel, without some of the clothing and electronics and with the addition of some extra food and water. Snacks for quick energy and some pain meds are key for getting people out of trouble, along with the first aid, rescue, and emergency gear mentioned above.

And… you are ready!

Ready for the water — in my backyard

2018 Kite trips in Brazil

For 2018 I’m introducing two very unique itineraries with SurfinSemFim: a slower, friends & family-oriented trip (SurfinSemSLOW) and an kitesurfing adventure skills training trip (AdventureSemFim).

SurfinSemFim

These are both in addition to the full calendar of short-, medium- and long-distance kitesurfing trips that SurfinSemFim offers throughout the year, and all SurfinSemFim trips including my own will introduce you to the joy of travel by kite in Brazil, and to the global SurfinSemFim Tribe, a community of like-minded lovers of the life outside. We also provide help with packing and a full packing list to everyone who joins us in Brazil.

Your feedback will be very important as we finalize both of these trips, so please don’t hesitate to indicate your interest using the form below:

Which trip are you interested in (required)?

We will add you to the list and be in touch with further details and to answer any of your questions. Thank you for your interest in SurfinSemFim 2018 with Bowen Dwelle!

Thank You!

SurfinSemFim, Andre Penna, Boardriding MauiKurtis Eyewear, my dad, and everyone else who has helped me figure out what to pack for various trips over the years!

2018 Kitesurfing trips in Brazil

I first visited Brazil on a kitesurfing trip in 2008, and I’ve been doing kite trips there with with SurfinSemFim since 2015. Over these last few years I’ve traveled the entire northern coast of Brazil by kite, from Natal to Sāo Luís, and I’m now designing and leading custom trips in some of my most favorite places along the way.

For 2018 I’m introducing two very unique itineraries: a slower, friends & family-oriented trip and a kitesurfing adventure skills and leadership training trip.

SurfinSemFim

These are both in addition to the full calendar of short-, medium- and long-distance kitesurfing trips that SurfinSemFim offers throughout the year, and all SurfinSemFim trips including my own will introduce you to the joy of travel by kite in Brazil, and to the global SurfinSemFim Tribe, a community of like-minded lovers of the life outside.

This is the first announcement of these trips, and the details are still in flux. Your feedback will be very important as we finalize both of these, so please don’t hesitate to indicate your interest!

 

SurfinSemFim group – photo Bruna Arcangelo Toledo

 

Want to join us in Brazil this year?

Which trip are you interested in (required)?

We will add you to the list and be in touch with further details and to answer any of your questions. Thank you for your interest in SurfinSemFim 2018 with Bowen Dwelle!

Here is the full-length documentary film that we shot in 2016 and released in 2017. Enjoy the vibe and I hope to see you in Brazil!

 

Bowen on the Jeff Schlarb podcast

Fellow Battery member, podcaster and top-notch interior designer Jeff Schlarb called me out of the blue and invited me in for an interview on his show. I’m very grateful for unexpected invitations like this, and I admire what Jeff is doing a lot.

San Francisco-based interior designer Jeff Schlarb

What’s his show about? As with my own podcast (that remains very much in development), his is quite simply a creative project — a work of art, really. ‘An opportunity to have interesting conversations,’ and it certainly was.

Thanks for the invitation, Jeff. It takes courage to open your door so widely — well done. I hope you all enjoy our conversation, and do check out the other episodes of his show, including SF supervisor Scott Wiener, chef Tyler Florence, choreographer Alonzo King, and restauranteur Anna Weinberg, among many others!

 

December 2017 in Brazil with SurfinSemFim

Some of my favorite memories are from long distance kitesurfing trips on the northern coast of Brazil. I’ve done several trips there with SurfinSemFim and I’ll be returning December 10-16, 2017 to lead my favorite trip of all: from kite mecca in Preá through the amazing Parnaiba Delta to Atins, a magical village with great kiting on the edge of the incredible Lençois Maranhenses national park.

The Delta trip covers 350km over 7 days and 6 nights, traveling entirely on the water — truly a long distance kitesurfing journey, departing and arriving each day directly from beautiful small hotels and posadas along the way.

Delta Path

We’ll meet on December 10 at the beautiful and unique Rancho do Peixe in Preá, just a few hours by car from the airport in Fortaleza. I recommend coming in a day or two early if possible to relax at Rancho and warm up with a few short downwinders around the point to the legendary town of Jericoacoara.

As we make our way down the coast we’ll have top-notch land support from SurfinSemFim and coaching on the water from myself and Evan Netsch, top rider and rep for Cabrinha kites.

On Dec 11 we’ll leave Preá and spend the next several days making our way down the coast of three different Brazilian states: Ceará, Piauí and Maranhão, stopping for nights in Camocim, Barra Grande, Ilha dos Poldros, Tutóia, and then finally in Atins. This itinerary gives you exposure to a hugely varied landscape — from dunes and lagoons to the mangroves and rivers of the Parnaiba delta all the way to the beginning of the incredible Lençois Maranhenses. If time permits, I recommend extending your trip for a few days at the end to explore Atins and the Lençois. These places are hard to get to, truly off the beaten path, and very very worth spending some extra time in!

Incredible Ilha dos Poldros in the Parnaiba delta

We’ll cover distances of up to 70km on some days of this trip. This multi-day, long distance journey is suitable for experienced kitesurfers with some downwind experience and in good physical condition. Travelers on this itinerary usually fly into Fortaleza (FOR) and out of Sāo Luís (SLZ) airport. It is possible to get back to Fortaleza by land from Atins, but it takes a long time. We can help with airports transfers and any other travel details.

Downwind with SurfinSemFim

For more information and to reserve your spot please contact us here:

See you in Brazil!!

SurfinSemFim group – photo Bruna Arcangelo Toledo

Here Be Dragons podcast on the long distance experience with SurfinSemFim

Did I say podcasting was easy? Not a chance. That said, it is easier than shooting a film! I was lucky enough to be one of the principal athletes in the SurfinSemFim film production last year in Brazil, and believe me, I was glad that my only job was to kitesurf 100+km every day!

I was interviewed on the awesome Here Be Dragons kitesurfing podcast the other day. On his show, Bjoern digs up the details on some of the most interesting kite destinations around the world, and I’ve learned a lot listening to his episodes about South Africa and Chile, to name a couple.

He asked me to be on the show to talk about my #longdistance #kitesurfing experiences in Brazil with Surfin Sem Fim. We did a trans-Atlantic simul-cast and worked our way through the 600km itinerary that we captured last year, talking about the landscape, the spots, the kiting, and the immersive experience of traveling by kite day-after-day down the coast of Brazil.

Thanks to Surfin Sem Fim, Boardriding Maui, Andre Penna, Marco Dalpozzo, Bill Plautz and the #longdistance pioneers like Louis Tapper for the inspiration.

Here’s the link to my episode of the Here Be Dragons podcast – or find it on your favorite podcast app and subscribe! Part 1 is out today, part 2 to follow next week — I hope you enjoy the show.

Adventure Sports Podcast on long distance kitesurfing

I’ve been exploring the world of podcasts lately and this flourishing form of expression is very gratifying and inspiring. To use a model that I also use to describe various sports: writing is simple but difficult. Video is complicated and difficult. Speaking is simple and easy. Maybe radio/podcasting is [somewhat] complicated and yet easy?

In any case, there are podcasts about just about anything you can imagine, and in doing research for my own (!) I came across the Adventure Sports Podcast – and they asked me to be on the show!

Starting with the “beginner questions” about what kitesurfing is and how it works, at about 44:30 we move on to talk about my #longdistance #kitesurfing experience in Brazil and also about the deep connection between athletics and intuition and how being active in nature – especially over the course of a long athletic journey – can be a powerful way to train your intuition.

Thanks to Surfin Sem Fim, Boardriding Maui, Andre Penna, Marco Dalpozzo, Bill Plautz and the #longdistance pioneers like Louis Tapper for the inspiration.

Here’s the link to my episode of the Adventure Sports Podcast – or find it on your favorite podcast app and subscribe!

SurfinSemFim long distance kitesurfing documentary

Early last year my friend Marco mentioned an idea, a project that he was working on. Not ‘just an idea’ as we often say but an awesome idea, and I said yes!, let’s do it, I would love to be part of it if it happens.

I went into training mode – some flying, running, swimming in the Bay and kiting in Cape Town, the Philippines, Micronesia, Baja, and California – and a few months later I found myself in Taiba, Brazil getting ready to kite 600km down the coast with a small film crew to capture the experience.

This sort of athletic journey is my favorite way to travel, and it was an incredible opportunity and a privilege to be one of the six professional athletes that formed the team. I was the only American and the only non-Brazilian on the team, which made for an additional challenge on top of the long days on the water. The other riders were Guilly Brandão, Andre Cintra, Marco Dalpozzo, Andre Penna, and Marcela Witt — a diverse crew of world-class riders, all game for some long distance adventure!

After nearly a year of post-production the resulting film was released in Brazil by Canal OFF and I am now able to share it here with you.

An intense athletic journey is one of the best ways to bring out the connection between athletics and intuition, and making this film was a transformative experience for me. Not only was this my first pro athlete gig but I was also working in a new foreign language (Portuguese). At first it was hard to find my footing but once I got my board under my feet and my kite in the air I felt right at home. I’m very proud of the result and very happy that the film captures the feeling of this incredible part of the world, and of the long distance experience.

Enjoy the film and I’d love to hear your thoughts!

Credits

Production: e-group Hotels & Sports | Surfin SEM FIM | Vídeo com Alma
Director: Bruna Arcangelo Toledo
Camera: Mathias LessmannHugo Valente | Bruna Arcangelo Toledo
Script: Bruna Arcangelo Toledo
Editor: Ronaldo Andrade
Sound: Bruno Frene
Executive Producer: Jalila Paulino | Marco Dalpozzo
Supervisor of images: serginho pasqualino
Colorist: David Queiroz
Assistant colorist: Bruno Bridges
Athletes: Guilly Brandão, Andre Cintra, Marco Dalpozzo, Bowen DwelleAndre Penna, and Marcela Witt
My sponsors: Kurtis Eyewear, Alpinefoil kitesurf hydrofoils, and Boardriding Maui Cloud kites!

Series II Shirts

Series Two Shirts are now available

I’ve continued to refine my messages as well as the designs. This series uses a specific typeface that I researched with the help of my old friend Colin Johnston. The mirror-image type design is intended to create a graphic element, and also to present the message equally to the wearer, along with the approaching reader.

These designs are all important messages that I have received, continue to use, and enjoy retransmitting to others. I love language and language-based art, and t-shirts are the best way that I’ve found to share this sort of art with others.

This is an art project. Click the image to be part of the magic

#ChangeEverything

What better way to change (as much as possible) than by aiming to change everything? We all wonder how to change, and I’m no different. I had no idea, except to follow my intuition.

Meeting the current owner of my custom Lamborghini Orange Vespa by chance in San Francisco!
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I’ll Never Forget You

Pay attention: everyone you meet brings something unique to your world. You never know when you’ll meet someone unforgettable.

I’ll never forget the AdMonsters crew
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Keep Odd Hours

I’m sick of all these health nuts telling me to go to bed at the same time every night. All of the interesting things happen in the small hours.

Sex is Better Sober

Right? Right.

I met this complete stranger in the market in DTLA and stopped to compliment her on her outfit. She has nothing to do with the shirt.
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Someday Means Never

Don’t put your dreams a list. How many times have you heard someone – or yourself – say “I’d like to do that someday…” Next time, take that moment as a message and make a plan to do it immediately.

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Watch This

A friend’s kid wanted to watch more of “his show” the other night – I just said, hey kiddo, #WatchThis instead.

Watch This is what you say when you’re confident enough to step out in front – or when you know that something interesting will happen, and happy with whatever the outcome may be. When people ask me: watch what?, I just say keep watching.

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Call Me Uli

And finally, an old favorite from Series Zero that I’ve revived for this announcement:

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Click here to help retransmit all of these important messages

I’d love to hear from you on Facebook or Instagram, just tag @bowendwelle or #CallMeUli with your photos!