’Utopia in St Brandon’ is a true representation of the trip, especially the boat ride! I do a lot of deep sea trips at home in New Cal, but the ride to St Brandon was tough for me and really bad for the others who were very sea sick, but it was so worth it. It was one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever seen with wind every day. The fact that it was so remote, made it a top spot to shoot.
Sometimes it’s hard to travel to places like St Brandon. It’s so far away and most of the world will never get to it or even know it exists. We were so lucky to go there, it was an utopia.
The setup they have there is pretty good. It’s basic, but it works. St Brandon is all about fishing and kiting! If I went back again, I would definitely take my fishing gear. That’s all we ate, fish and rice.
This trip was similar to when we went to the Cocos Islands. It’s all about give and take with Mother Nature, you can’t control her. You have to give to get there and take it all in once you arrive.
We have a really good team and know how to work together. Reno is like my brother, we’ve been doing these kind of trips for so many years together and with Toby (Photographer), Carlos (Videographer), Tommy (Head of Marketing at Duotone) we don’t really have to plan what shots we need to get, we just ride and shoot, it’s easy. I’m going to remember this trip for a very long time!
Utopia in St Brandon was different to the other episodes we’ve done before, because this trip was such a big adventure. We all had personal highlights. It’s really nice to see how the content we produced every day out there comes together in a final edit done by Carlos. He did a great job.
The start of the movie is less than idyllic, with a 26 hour boat ride and everyone throwing up. But the next frame you see is paradise. White sands, blue waters, everyone happy and riding in board shorts and bikinis, it was really how it was.
I have been to a lot of off the grid places in my time. The adventure and discovery that takes me out of my comfort zone keeps me motivated. I love to explore and do things that no one has done before. This is what keeps me going and it’s what I do best. I don’t care what conditions I get, horrible or perfect, it’s the experience of the unknown that gets me going.
This trip taught me how good the simple life can be. We were totally disconnected from the world for two weeks. I realised we don’t need all the things we think we do and you can have as good, if not a better time when you’re 100% engaged in the moment, people and things around you.
Adventure is what makes me tick. I’ve always had this spirit inside me. St Brandon was really awesome and the Duotone crew is like my second family. To be able to share this experience together was truly amazing.
The Duotone episode from St Brandon only shows a tiny amount of what went down in the two weeks we were there. It’s an island none of us knew and a lot of people will never know. Going there with the crew, crossing the huge, rolling ocean in the rain, getting further away from civilisation was mega. But arriving in paradise made it all worthwhile.
There was a lot of action, wind and moments that were quite scary, like the sharks. It made you realise that you are in the hands of Mother Nature. If anything happened to you, the nearest hospital was a day away. It was humbling and an incredible experience that I won’t ever forget.
These kind of trips take you to places that you only ever dream about. The fact that we get to do these things, really shows how driven and cool Duotone is as a brand. It’s fearless and gives us riders opportunities of a lifetime.
If you go to places like this, just make sure you go with a good crew, other than that everything was perfect in terms of the setup. What I did really miss was speaking with my family. With no cell service, it made me realise how important they all are. I’m not talking about connecting with the world via social media, more, my father in Cabo Verde and my girlfriend, just to know that they are fine and safe, as well as sharing this unique experience with them.
I had the best kite gear, energy around me, good waves, wind and such a good vibe within the team.
Having ridden the gear in light, stronger, flat water and waves on the trip, Duotone have really nailed the designs and performance of their products for our customers. There’s nothing like the Click Bar. You can trim your kite without looking, go with the flow and really get in touch with everything that’s going on. The Dice is so good! There was one day when I was kiting on a light wind day, barely making it upwind, pumping the board, the kite, down-looping, everything possible to get out to the wave. But, once I got on the wave, I was getting barrelled, speed, turns, such good rides and the Dice just even drifted perfectly with me.
The Duotone range is such top quality and has epic performance. In my opinion it can’t get any better. That said, each year we manage to improve the designs to go harder, higher, hit the lip more aggressively, have more control, so I’m super stoked on that. I can travel the world with everything I need, chase the conditions and travel to places like St. Brandon. Duotone really has it all covered, from those first steps to Pro level, light winds, strong winds, waves, flat waters, lakes, open oceans, the Duotone range is inspiring.