Robert Ayliffe of Norwalk Island Sharpies in Australia, who handles the designs of Iain Oughtred and Alec Jordan's kits down under, visited Buenos Aires recently and went for a boat trip on the River Plate. He was very impressed with the number of lovely wooden rowing skiffs being taken out by families, and even more impressed by the conditions they had to battle to get out on a river that seems to be a watery version of the M25.
Here is Robert's report (click the pictures to enlarge):
These are some of the boats that I saw in the River Plate Delta on the outskirts of Buenos Aires early last week. Could not believe my eyes!There are hundreds of [Iain Oughtred's skiff design] Badger lookalikes complete with sliding seats for public hire on this amazingly turbulent, highly trafficked water way.
Bullfighting has nothing on this; it is a tribute to the type that they survive at all!
Note the vessels that they coexist with.
Note the extensive use of buoyancy vests.
Argentineans fear nothing!
I love them!
I could not believe the aplomb and resilience of these boats and their crews in the face of such wild turbulence. They just rose over the wash, barely moving off course.
Wonderful to watch. Made me feel even more enthusiastic about recommending Iain Oughtred's Badger and Mole designs design to my fellow antipodeans. We have several of Alec Jordan's excellent kits of these boats being built in Australia and New Zealand.
My company acts as Iain's and Alec's agent in Australia and the Pacific.
A new web site is being built: straydogboatworks.com , which will incorporate NISBOATS and the Jordan/Oughtred range.
Thanks, Robert. This is my favourite picture. Clearly, young men take their girls out on the River Plate just as they do on the River Thames.