ALASKA GUYS 2017 | BLOG
D DAY | ALASKA So the long awaited and planned for trip has started. Me, Marek, and Patrik are joining Rob on his quest from Seattle to Alaska Glacier Bay. Today we had a long day travelling. We left Austin (my home base) and drove down to San Antonio. From San Antonio we had a weird one way flight that took us to Salt Lake City. In Salt Lake City we literally had 20 minutes to make the next layover so as we sprinted from Gates B to Gates C I threw in a quick water break. From Salt Lake City we flew to Seattle and had amazing views of Mt. Rainier that me and Rob (the captain of the Saudade sailboat that has been so generous to us on this trip) attempted to climb in 2015 but got denied by weather. In Seattle we crashed the business lounge as I guest passed my home boys 😉. We raided it. Drank and ate everything they had there. They definitely wont miss our presence. From Seattle we flew to Juneau, Alaska. The landing was fun as we landed between huge Alaska fjords and tall emerald trees. As soon as we landed we took a Cab to the Marina to meet up with Rob. Rob the captain was not there as he was temporarily flying around glaciers in a helicopter (what a boss…) and so we dropped our stuff on the boat and went out into town. Great beer and good food 😉 Oh and guess what!? As we were walking back to the boat we got to see the Northern Lights ❤. That is the first time I saw them and it was a magical experience. I hope to see them again on this trip and capture the experience better. For today, that is all from me. Good night. Team Saudade OUT.
Day 1 | Alaska | Juneau
Memorial Weekend has been fun. Today we wake up in Junea, Alaska – the capital city of Alaska. I like the city, I like the vibe, I like the smell of the air. It reminds me of distant memories and recollections of things in the past. As if a certain nostalgia sets in. In the Slovak language you would call it CTLIVOST. I think I call it an “itch” to get the hell out of the harbor and go sailing. But guess what? What a perfect name and description of a feeling! The word SAUDADE is the name of Rob’s sailboat and when I put that in google it says: “a feeling of longing, melancholy, or nostalgia that is supposedly characteristic of the Portuguese or Brazilian temperament.” Couldn’t think of a better expression as I take in the first breath of the day and have the sun rays warm my face up. We spent the whole day prepping the boat for our adventure. Ended up buying 700+ dollars of groceries. Fun experience btw…as we pushed the grocery cart 2 miles across the town and had all the tour bus people laugh at us and take pictures of us. Do we really stand out that much 😃? I guess we do. We then filled up the gas and water. Charged all the batteries. Did some quick boat work and projects. Cleaned the kitchen and put all our gear into all the cubbies in the boat that will hold our things while we rock from left to right and vice versa 😉. At the end of the day we flew the drone around as you can see from this footage. We ended the night with some local beer and good laughs. Tomorrow its time to sail out!
Day 2 | Alaska | Juneau Today we wake up, today we sail. Rob is all ready and has read the tide charts. The tide is low which lets us squeeze under the Juneau bridge with our tall mast and it spits us out into the bay. The first thing we see is a Star Wars looking cruise ship right ahead of us. A little daunting but fun to look at. The day is long at sea as we sail 65+ miles from Juneau to Hoonah, Alaska. Along the way we see a lot of cruise ships, glaciers, glaciated peaks, mountains, trees, rocks, eagles, and large whales. As we arrive at the Hoonah marina a scary eerie feeling sets in as we spot a native American cemetery / burial ground. Its as if the spirits are in the air. When we dock we end up docking next to a large corporate yacht worth millions of dollars. Nice, but to be honest I prefer the simple life of friends and a 50+ foot yacht. There is something special about comradery and adventure that a luxurious yacht cant provide. After we dock we end up walking over to Hoonah but since its memorial weekend everything is closed. We check out some of the houses and go back on our boat to cook. Marek is our main chef and he cooks up a bad ass salmon meal. I did not talk much about the meals but trust me when I say the whole town of Hoonah wishes they were on our boat that night. Maybe not a luxurious 100 meter yacht but definitely dinner in style. Over and out for tonight!
Day 3 | Alaska | Hoonah Hoonah, Alaska to Glacier Bay, Alaska. Today we sail a short distance of 40 to 50 miles North. Took us about 6.5 hours. The internet is sparse to none. As we reached the entrance of Glacier Bay – also called Bartlett cove we went bouldering on some nearby rocks. Found a nice V4 and V5 problem (soon to be on mountain project for other boulderers hehe). @ptrik.psnagged a first ascent and I got a second hehe. Check out our picture 😉 Beautiful amazing granite. It would stick like glue. After bouldering for 3 hours in what seemed to be a never ending Alaskan Summer sunset we hopped back on the dingy to motor our way back to the sailboat. The boulder was about 2 kilometers away. Oh and guess what? The tide was so fast it left our dingy stranded 20 meters on shore and we had a hard time lifting it and dragging it into the water again. We came back to the sailboat after, put out some traps for crabs (Crabpots) and went to walk around the NPS visitor center at Glacier Bay. Unfortunately everything was closed so we packed up and returned to the sailboat to go sleep. More to come! The adventure only begins but I am afraid I will have no internet (not complaining, need a break from social media) so I will write my blogs with a paper and pen and re-type them for you when I get back online. IF I GET BACK 😊 who knows. Thanks for all the love and keep following for more adventures. Thanks to Rob for having us. He has been wonderful and a generous GOD 😊PS: we swam in Glacier Bay for 1 minute today. SO COLD 🙂 BUT SO FUN. like little kids in the swimming pool. probably few people swim here OR? tell me if you hear otherwise.
Day 4 | Glacier Bay Alaska | Bartlett Cove It's 7am at Bartlett cove Glacier Bay and the alarm clock wakes us up. We head over to the National Park Service center for an orientation class and permit check. We watch a short 15min video that walks us through all of the park regulations, rules, restrictions, and instructions on sailing. The park ranger lady is very sweet to us but I am not a fan of heavily regulated things. In my opinion regulations take away from freedom. I suppose it is necessary to have regulation to preserve "freedom of access" to this land as it has been abused by generations prior to us that mistreated their access. Another reason for all these rules is to protect all the beautiful animal species living here. It's a natural preserve for wildlife. Anyways... enough of regulation talk. As the video finishes we sign some paperwork and head over to the visitor center lodge for breakfast. Expensive but hits the spot... especially 5 cups of diluted coffee. Lol. Me and Patrick decide to occupy the couch right by the fireplace as we hog down the last remnants of wifi and technological existence in this remote part of our planet. Oh and what kind of trip would it be without souvenirs? Damn I gotta get a magnet for my fridge collection And I gotta buy some postcards. Yeah, I'm old school.... but it's appreciated by the receiving party, trust me. Patrick even gets us shirts. Now we are officially tourists haha.......... 12pm, at the dock now. Time to head out. We get the last of gas and water and sail out trough the whale waters of glacier bay straight up to Shag Cove. Shag cove has an eerie feeling to it as we approach it and see 3 bears. 1 big mama bear the size of a small smart car and 2 baby bears that would definitely snack up on you. After some good bear watching we try to anchor down in a deep fjord water valley. We max out on our anchor rope and chain but Rob the captain manages to anchor us. Shag cove is magical but at the same time it's wild. It makes you realize you are in bear territory and have no chance of surviving one night in the wooDs. Think movie Revenant style. Heavy rain comes in so as Patrick and Rob fish me and Marek pass out down below.
Day 5 | Glacier Bay Alaska | Blue Mouse Cove The day of epiphany and awakening has come. I needed it and I finally got smacked in the face. I am having a sudden onset of emotions that might be caused by the fact that today (no idea how) I deleted all of the videos and pictures from this trip. ALL OF THEM! I can't even begin to describe the pain I am feeling now. The disappointment in myself and blaming this on me. I worked so hard and so much to make this thing a success. Without cell reception out here one is left alone to their thoughts and a small sailboat room. The thoughts that go through my mind are incredibly powerful and cause many emotions. You see what I write? Mind = Thoughts = emotions = a viscous cycle. The rain and a sailboat with 4 men is not helping me with remaining thoughtless. This is a test. But a test of what ? To realize whether this is truly what I want to be doing or to come to understand I should appreciate the small things I have had along with me all this time? It reminds me that I miss the lady... As far as what we did today ? We flew the drone... but is it even worth mentioning that I ain't got any footage from it? We also saw a bear, followed it along on the water as it moved on shore and got to boulder off of a wall close by the water a little later when the rain stopped. Got some sick slab climbing in. After I deleted all the pictures I went to bed to calm down. The guys watched a movie as I slept and when I woke up we all had dinner and went up on deck to fish. Patrik caught 2 fishes and for some reason hanging out with the boys catching fish calmed my mind. We ended up singing songs in the rain. We now have a theme song. It's time to try harder and record new footage. Time to be dominant like the bear in front of me.
Day 6 | Glacier Bay Alaska | Reid Glacier Leaving Blue Mouse Cove straight to Reid Glacier. As we get to Reid Glacier we are the only boat out there. We set a bomber anchor and decide to explore the Glacier. Reid Glacier is a slowly retreating / stable Glacier (yeah right...). The water in reid bay is super murky and cementish looking as all the glacier deposit and silth from the glacier floats in it. Me and Patrick fully gear up to go establish a first ascent up a big mountain in the background that we scouted as a potential candidate. Unfortunately right as we get ready it starts raining hardcore. Marek cooks lunch and we all hop in the dingy to go explore the glacier from land. There is a huge river flowing out from below the glacier (ice melt) and Rob decides to go left instead of right so we try to get on shore but the dingy engine keeps getting stuck in gravel and dirt. We finally find a place where we can get on land. Cement mud... so we hop out of the little raft and pull it up 2 meters on land as we expect a high tide coming in in a couple hours. It proves to be difficult terrain with Big rocks and a lot of mud to walk on. There are 4 mini rivers we need to cross that all merge into one big one. At first we take 2 hours to walk up on a big slope to see the glacier from above + to scout a potential ascent path for the mountain we saw with Patrick. As we get to the top we come to the conclusion it would be very difficult to find a good approach to this mountain so we give it up. The group decides to get on top of the glacier and cross over to the right side of it where we initially wanted to get to with the dingy. The four of us cross the glacier (a dangerous crossing that I recommend you don't try at home). Any slip, fall or crack in the ice would cause any of us to plummet to our death or get stuck in the glacier and drown in the river that flows under it. ... Big rain rolls in as Patrick ice climbs a piece of the glacier. There is no direct way back to the dingy except to backtrack over the glacier....with some disgust we all manage to find our way to the dingy but guess what!! The dingy is already floating in the water! 2 feet deep. The tides here are fast.
Day 7 | Glacier Bay Alaska | Margerie Glacier
Today we wake up right by #ReidGlacierand after a feast of a breakfast we head over to #LamplughGlacier for some majestic views of the active glacier. We get a lot of pictures and videos of it #calving. We then move on to see the John Hopkins inlet and the John Hopkins Galcier. This whole area is closed to sailing so we just peak in from the entrance of the inlet and get unbeatable sea level views of #MtFairweather. Crazy!!! Crazy beautiful. BUT that's not all! From there we head up north all the way to the end of glacier bay right by the Canadian border. We get to #margerieglacier where all the fun begins. Here captain @escapedfromfargo takes us super close to the glacier. So close that when it falls the ice shrapnel hits our boat! Damn .... what a thing... we capture it on video so go check out @ptrik.p and@marekkellner for more photos and videos. Me and Marek were on the dingy while Patrik was up on the mast and Rob was driving the sailboat. We barely escaped a big wave on the dingy with Marek lol ! After that we got to "surf" on glacier icebergs as we tied up to them with a rope and climbed up on them and pulled them behind our sailboat. 😂😂😂 you will see in our movie. The day ended with the most magical sunset ever as we sailed down to #northsandycove. Out for tonight!
Day 8 | Glacier Bay Alaska | North Sandy Cove Breakfast at North Sandy cove is good. It's in my belly now. Yummy to my tummy. 😝! We sail down south to #beartrackcove. The water is shallow in parts of the cove so me and Patrick hop on the dingy and go explore. As we come back to the sailboat Rob floors the gas and tries to runaway. Obviously he can go way faster than us but as we try to catch the sailboat on the dingy Rob tells us we should try to surf the wave his boat is making (think wakesurfing). So we catch a wave and ride it pretty good. Totally get a boost in speed. Marek manages to catch a perfect shot of us laughing as children. Look for yourself ;) We finish the day by anchoring in Bartlet Cove and going to get internet and dinner so that we can all write and post content. I also try to download software to help me recover deleted data. It doesn't work... as I have a SSD solid state drive and the way the drive records / deletes data is different from HDD drives (whatever... right? Who cares). Anyways... no success but if you need help going forward with data recovery hit me up. Yup... we are all internet addicts. It's midnight and we are the last people in the Bartlett cove lodge. Time to go sleep! Big day tomorrow.
Day 9 | Alaska | Haines
It's time to go... time to leave Glacier Bay. A lot of adventures begin and end. Nothing is permanent in life and that's why being truly present is the only answer to living fully. It's a tough concept and so is the meaning of happiness. What is happiness? Is it to have friends and family by your side? Is it to have the luxury of being your own "boss", is it to be financially free?, is it to be in love? Is it to have friends everywhere you go? A life full of plans... it can be all of it and none of it. At the end of the day it is what you make out of it. Happiness is rare and it cost us all a lot of pain ! It avoids all the plans we make. But if you wanted and convinced yourself you could have happiness everyday! Happy is the person that is crazy and that believes in things others don't. Anyways getting off topic here.... point being things come and go and life while linear with age is also full of unlimited possibilities, experiences and stories. Tangents baby! Not getting sentimental here but more so excited as to what life holds around the next turn. Excited to see @waterlemonrea soon ;) Now we sail to Haines, Alaska and we have a 16 hour sailing trip ahead of us. A storm is lurking above as we sail out of Bartlet Cove.
Day 10 | Alaska | Haines Quite an eventful day to be honest... early rising and no sleeping! I'm loving the fact Alaska has light all day and almost all night lol! I could get used to constant light even though it definitely f**ks with the bodies biorhythm. So what did we do today? We started off with amazing coffee at the Rusty Compass HAINES coffee shop. Dang! Real coffee after 10 days! SIGN ME UP! My name is Martin Tatar and I am a coffee addict. Yes I am! ;) 4 espresso shots and I'm ready to take over the world (pinky and the brain style). The coffee shop owner LEE and his family are the nicest people in town. Definitely a must stop shop! Loved it. Thanks for all the love! (Lee drove us 2x to 2 different locations while in town and offered a friendly helping hand. The world needs more of Lees!) I hit up my home boy DRAKE --> not the Canadian Drake but more like @FlyDrake the local bad ass pilot. #BAMF is an appropriate hashtag. we show up at his plane hangar and get labeled #EUROS. Cheap Euros. Description fits accurately ✅ check - instant friendship. He seems to be of our kind. No corporate bullshit but straight up. We fly, fly, fly high! Over #Lutak #Haines#chilkootinlet #MudBay #hainesstateforest#chilkootglacier etc... etc... He shows us pristine VIRGIN granite walls. Many unclimbed, Some touched by man kind. A climbers first ascent paradise. Unfortunately TIME is the worlds largest constraint and that is what we are out off. HAH like that movie with JTimberleo? Thanks Drake! Now a 5 mile walk to town. We have to pay many thanks to hitchhiking after mile 4 and getting a ride from a girl in a red golf. She said follow pink ribbons 🎀 8pm? Hmm... how about going climbing ? @ptrik.p let's do it! We throw on our backpacks, rope and helmets... and with the help of Lee we start right at the trailhead of #MTRipinski. Remember the pink ribbons 🎀? Yeah we follow those. Dumbest idea ever! About 2 miles in and 250meters of vertical gain in a forest as thick as the hair in your shower drain we are in prime bear rib steak territory. But we are the steak.... The story ends here for now.... as ehm yea... #flyingvs #sailing #alaska #haines
Day 11 | Skagway | Alaska #8 used to be my favorite number but now it's 11... so here we go Day 11. Our trip is slowly winding down to a wrap. It's been interesting out here the last few days. Climbing and getting injured...but about that later ... Definitely a soul opening experience as @kash mentions in of the comments in my feed. Skagway is a big city with a lot of cruise ships 🚢 arriving and departing. It's very commercial and it has a similar feeling to Aguas Calientes, the commercial village in Peru found under the Machu Picchu site, that me and @marekkellner visited on our 2015 Fall Expedition. I remember how we walked out of the Jungle after a 6 day 40+mile hike and the first thing we saw was people in flip flops with fitbits counting how many steps they walked and complaining. It left a sour taste on me. Skagway has a similar feel with cruise ships arriving and "tourists" flooding a city that is only open for them. Skagway is completely empty in the morning and afternoon when the ships are gone. Fun fact ? Even the internet does not work when ships are in town. That includes LTE, mainland connection and/or wifi. Why would you go online when you travel somewhere to see something? The viscous addictive dopamine cycle of notifications and social media? The storefronts here have a lot of souvenirs and jewelry but they have a lonely feel to them as a town that was once a mining town has quite far from it. To not sound like a hater it's beautiful here and the locals are amazing and I can't say anything bad about people from the cruise ships as I don't know them and every person has his/her own story as to why they do what they do. I'm just not a commercial type. With the town swarming the only option is to hike 7 miles up northwest to a climbing crag called the 4 mile crag on #mountainproject and get some climbing in! btw--> mountain project here is so inaccurate BUT a shout out to Kelsey Gray and his book on climbing in Alaska. Great guy and great book. Met him in person at this crag. It took us from 5pm to 1am to hike out there, climb and come back. Sry @escapedfromfargo that we missed ya for dinner but it was nice to see @ptrik.p send someone's local project.
Day 12 | Juneau | Alaska Ending where we began.... more days ahead... I have been bad about posting on time and on many days I had no service. The exact count to me is unknown as I don't keep track of things like this but ask @ptrk.p he knows how long we have been out here . Could all just be a dream ;)... Towards the ending of the trip I was #highball #bouldering with Patrik and as I was down #climbing to get down from the #boulder a huge hold broke off. I #fellabout 15 feet (roughly 4 meters) and landed straight on my butt which bounced me off into the water and send me there head down. I was quite confused as I was falling and I remember having a hard time finding the surface when I was under water. @MarekKellner almost captured the moment on camera as I fell. I'm lucky it was my butt. I took some severe bruising to my butt. Look at picture 2! (Sorry for the butt pic but I kinda like my new #KimKardashian look. jk... I got some more X-ray pics of my spine and hip so hit me up if you want to see more 😂😂😂+ make sure to send me ❤️ love. So where was I? Oh yeah ... Time to hit up the good ole routine stereotype life NOT ;) me and my boys plan trips every year. Expeditions and adventure outings. Each one of these trips brings a lifetime of memories and experiences. At the end of the day the conclusion we can take from this expedition remains in alignment with all of the other ones before:#Live #life #in #balance. Everything needs to be in balance: family & love, friends, Work, travel, exercise, diet, partying, hobbies, etc... it's usually not good to have too much of one. Question remains: "do you learn more about your true self on trips like these."? My answer is: "get outta here with ur questions!... nah I mean I definitely can learn more about how i behave and respond to new situations or in new settings but the key is to understand that I am me and there are no two of me. So when you ask me if I learn about myself it's a weird question. It is only I and my home is here and the time is now. So everyone caries the answer with them. No need to go anywhere to discover yourself." Cheers! Onto the next adventure ;)