Isle of Wight, England - SO MINT!

After 3 months of skiing, filming & good times with great crew in Austria I lived on the Isle of Wight (IOW) with my girl friend, Sophie's family. We mountain biked, road biked, wake boarded, paddle boarded, sailed the English Channel, sailed in dinghies, managed a forrest, camped, partied, swam in the sea, BBQ'ed on beaches, mad and had a really, REALLY good time. As well as making new friends I strengthened many old friendships. These people are what made it such great time and what makes the IOW such an amazing part of the world. It's a very special place to me. Thanks to all the Islanders especially the Stevens' for having me!!!

Checkout some of the fun times below...

 Sophie at the helm after setting sail from Cowes, IOW at 5.30am on the English Channel crossing, note the white ensign (flag) only to be flown by the Royal Navy and members of the Royal Yacht Squadron – the most prestigious yacht club in the world! Click photo for the website

Sophie at the helm after setting sail from Cowes, IOW at 5.30am on the English Channel crossing, note the white ensign (flag) only to be flown by the Royal Navy and members of the Royal Yacht Squadron – the most prestigious yacht club in the world! Click photo for the website

 Rebecca Morley skipered Sophie, Jamie Stevens (Soph’s Dad) and myself on Jamie’s Halberg Rassy 34 as she powers across the English Channel

Rebecca Morley skipered Sophie, Jamie Stevens (Soph’s Dad) and myself on Jamie’s Halberg Rassy 34 as she powers across the English Channel

 On the 14 hour crossing I had time to try some different camera angles, some of which will be published in the next issue of Yachting Monthly!

On the 14 hour crossing I had time to try some different camera angles, some of which will be published in the next issue of Yachting Monthly!

 We made it to the French coast and the first thing we saw was the Phare de Gatteville lighthouse

We made it to the French coast and the first thing we saw was the Phare de Gatteville lighthouse

 Sophie on the hand rail for “ballast” on the way home to England

Sophie on the hand rail for “ballast” on the way home to England

 Tuesday night racing in the Solent with Orion Shuttleworth (right) on Will Carter’s (left) 18 footer, planing on a broad reach with beers!

Tuesday night racing in the Solent with Orion Shuttleworth (right) on Will Carter’s (left) 18 footer, planing on a broad reach with beers!

 Dinghy sailing with a land locked Austrian (Lucas Zoegernitz), note the water on board, again with beers. Photo: Lucas Zogernitz

Dinghy sailing with a land locked Austrian (Lucas Zoegernitz), note the water on board, again with beers. Photo: Lucas Zogernitz

 The land locked Austrian trying to paddle board

The land locked Austrian trying to paddle board

 An Argentinian (Juan Pablo Lezcano) freeskier from the Andes trying to paddle board

An Argentinian (Juan Pablo Lezcano) freeskier from the Andes trying to paddle board

 Soph and I trying to double up paddle boarding

Soph and I trying to double up paddle boarding

 Soph killing it paddle boarding, actually on a windsurf board – so smug

Soph killing it paddle boarding, actually on a windsurf board – so smug

 Oswald Hoskyns, and I in a forrest that he manages. I learnt a little about English woodlands. Photo: Richard (last name unknown)

Oswald Hoskyns, and I in a forrest that he manages. I learnt a little about English woodlands. Photo: Richard (last name unknown)

 A hedge I trimmed, I was told to make it to a sphere but I couldn’t resist. This is right out Mr. Deegans office window. Photo: Sophie Stevens

A hedge I trimmed, I was told to make it to a sphere but I couldn’t resist. This is right out Mr. Deegans office window. Photo: Sophie Stevens

 Skating in lycras! While out cycling, Soph and I saw a friend in a car with skaters so we borrowed the boards and went for a blat. Photo: Claudia Manser

Skating in lycras! While out cycling, Soph and I saw a friend in a car with skaters so we borrowed the boards and went for a blat. Photo: Claudia Manser

 We entered an off road duathalon, 5km run/20km Bike/5km run, Soph ran and I biked. After I got a puncture and got lost we came 2nd but only due to some of my unintentional short cuts, so we gave the prize to 3rd. Photo: Jack Grundy

We entered an off road duathalon, 5km run/20km Bike/5km run, Soph ran and I biked. After I got a puncture and got lost we came 2nd but only due to some of my unintentional short cuts, so we gave the prize to 3rd. Photo: Jack Grundy

 Evening mountain bike rides with mint sunsets. Photo: Will Carter

Evening mountain bike rides with mint sunsets. Photo: Will Carter

 Soph and the view of the cliffs near The Needles from Compton

Soph and the view of the cliffs near The Needles from Compton

 There is some pretty sweet mountain bike trails on the IOW. Photo: Sophie Stevens

There is some pretty sweet mountain bike trails on the IOW. Photo: Sophie Stevens

 L-R myself, Claire Kitson, Sophie Stevens, and Tom Platts doing the Randonee (round the island cycle race, 107km) when Tom & Clare came to stay. Photo: Some nice asian dude

L-R myself, Claire Kitson, Sophie Stevens, and Tom Platts doing the Randonee (round the island cycle race, 107km) when Tom & Clare came to stay. Photo: Some nice asian dude

 Josh Howell driving Soph for a wakeboard with his sweet commercial wakeboarding rig. Click the photo for a link to his Facebook Page

Josh Howell driving Soph for a wakeboard with his sweet commercial wakeboarding rig. Click the photo for a link to his Facebook Page

 Cousin Henry smashing a beer with Will on the wakeboard

Cousin Henry smashing a beer with Will on the wakeboard

 Me attempting a back roll, so close to landing! Photo: Will Oswald

Me attempting a back roll, so close to landing! Photo: Will Oswald

 My sister Harriet, Sophie, Alice (my brother Will’s GF) & Will, my brother in the background

My sister Harriet, Sophie, Alice (my brother Will’s GF) & Will, my brother in the background

 Crab races – catching crabs with bacon in a bag then racing them off the dock, this guy was the winner

Crab races – catching crabs with bacon in a bag then racing them off the dock, this guy was the winner

 Soph has started a wedding stationary business, get in touch if you’re getting hitched and want original, personalised, hand-drawn invites, save the dates etc. Click the photo for her Facebook PageOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Soph has started a wedding stationary business, get in touch if you’re getting hitched and want original, personalised, hand-drawn invites, save the dates etc. Click the photo for her Facebook PageOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 Soph and I at Soph’s best friends wedding – Ellie and Sam Pickard. Photo: unknownOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Soph and I at Soph’s best friends wedding – Ellie and Sam Pickard. Photo: unknownOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 Here is the happy bride and groom, Ellie & Sam Pickard – it go loose!

Here is the happy bride and groom, Ellie & Sam Pickard – it go loose!

 L-R: Soph, Jack Grundy, Josh Howell, Jess Gray and many others not pictured. Sadly I had to leave the Island before Soph’s birthday but I threw her this early surprise party instead!

L-R: Soph, Jack Grundy, Josh Howell, Jess Gray and many others not pictured. Sadly I had to leave the Island before Soph’s birthday but I threw her this early surprise party instead!

 The notorious Pussy Port Crew – L-R: Sophie Stevens, Me, Frank Bagnall & Caff Mate at Soph’s surprise party

The notorious Pussy Port Crew – L-R: Sophie Stevens, Me, Frank Bagnall & Caff Mate at Soph’s surprise party

 L-R: Doug Richards, myself, Frank Bagnall & Sophie crashed a french sailer party, the french soon all left but left behind their booze! Photo: probably some Frenchy

L-R: Doug Richards, myself, Frank Bagnall & Sophie crashed a french sailer party, the french soon all left but left behind their booze! Photo: probably some Frenchy

 L-R: Sam Pickard’s feet, Chris Newnham, Frank Bagnall, Will Carter, Claudia Manser, Doug Newell, Doug Richards and Vic Degan having a BBQ on the beach with many others not pictured

L-R: Sam Pickard’s feet, Chris Newnham, Frank Bagnall, Will Carter, Claudia Manser, Doug Newell, Doug Richards and Vic Degan having a BBQ on the beach with many others not pictured

 L-R: Ben Segal, Neil Williman, Tom Platts, Lucas Zoegernitz, Claire Kitson all came to visit one weekend, this is beach cricket before camping at Compton

L-R: Ben Segal, Neil Williman, Tom Platts, Lucas Zoegernitz, Claire Kitson all came to visit one weekend, this is beach cricket before camping at Compton

 L-R: Myself, Sophie, Lucas Zoegernitz, Ben Segal, Neil Williman, Tom Platts & Claire Kitson having drinks and sing-a-longs

L-R: Myself, Sophie, Lucas Zoegernitz, Ben Segal, Neil Williman, Tom Platts & Claire Kitson having drinks and sing-a-longs

 Doug Richards, lead sing for the Plastic Mermaids, turned up out of the night and joined in. Click the photo for a link to their rad music

Doug Richards, lead sing for the Plastic Mermaids, turned up out of the night and joined in. Click the photo for a link to their rad music

 Family who came to visit from London on my last weekend on the Island, L-R: Sophie, myself, Alice Mckechnie (Will’s GF), Will my brother, Harriet my sister and cousin Henry Aitken. Photo: Vic Degan

Family who came to visit from London on my last weekend on the Island, L-R: Sophie, myself, Alice Mckechnie (Will’s GF), Will my brother, Harriet my sister and cousin Henry Aitken. Photo: Vic Degan

 Wood fire pizza Guru Henry. Tom Turney Hosted us one night for delicious pizza and Football on a projector at his beautiful Eco Lodges accomodation. Click the photo for a link

Wood fire pizza Guru Henry. Tom Turney Hosted us one night for delicious pizza and Football on a projector at his beautiful Eco Lodges accomodation. Click the photo for a link

 Camping at Compton beach again, this time with about 25 good friends! Sophie and Caff Mate are walking Tallulah aged 1. Photo: Harriet Oswald

Camping at Compton beach again, this time with about 25 good friends! Sophie and Caff Mate are walking Tallulah aged 1. Photo: Harriet Oswald

 
 Bonfire party with family and Island crew. Photo: Owen Buggy

Bonfire party with family and Island crew. Photo: Owen Buggy

 
 Cousin Henry trying to shake his hangover the next day

Cousin Henry trying to shake his hangover the next day

 Soph and I with 4 pints on a windsurf board tied to a buoy

Soph and I with 4 pints on a windsurf board tied to a buoy

 Drunk cheesy selfie

Drunk cheesy selfie

 And then lots more beer when we got to shore…

And then lots more beer when we got to shore…

Back home in NZ after 3 long flights...

 On the way to the family bach with Mac and Dad

On the way to the family bach with Mac and Dad

 Serenity at the bach

Serenity at the bach

 A mid winter skinny dip – dam cold! Photo: selfie

A mid winter skinny dip – dam cold! Photo: selfie

Now back to more skiing in NZ...