ray thomas wrote:
Located in Portland Oregon.
Have not seen any accounts of practical air or shipping options of AIs for short term trip to NZ and so was hoping to hear that a Hobie AI dealer was located in NZ somewhere so we could obtain a couple of boats for a trip in November 2009.
I had a good experience in Feb. 2009 when a friend and I flew to Key Largo FLA and rented two AIs from a dealer for a five day trip down and through the FLA Keys to Key West, about 150 miles after all was said and done.
I am hoping someone is renting AIs in NZ by now; any new developments?
Ray - I spent a week on each island in May. What I noticed is that there appears to be a well developed Kayak fishing fraternity and the local fishing and game shops in Taupo had some very well designed fishing kayaks for sale. In many ways they reminded me of our Hobie Adventure kayak - however there was one huge difference (in the kayak) - they didn't have the Mirage Drive pedal option! There certainly wasn't any sail or akas either. Strange in some ways - as it's such a windy place and would be well suited to the kind of activities we like - fishing, sailing, cruising, photography to name a few.
One of the Hobie dealers here in Victoria, arranged a fishing expedition in Western Australia and the package included the cost of air freighting your AI from Melbourne to the nearest airport to Dirk Hartog Island and back. I seem to recall the freight cost amounted to approx $750 AU return.
It's times like this when you need a foldup or inflatable - unless of course you come across on your own yacht