A sense of adventure
by Tim Thomas, David Pelly
Marama (37.8m, Delta Marine/2008)
When Maramas owners took delivery of this tri-deck expedition motor yacht, they had been planning their Pacific odyssey for five years. Familiar with the Pacific from their previous yacht (also a Delta), they had known exactly what they wanted.
Marama was virtually built mission-specific for the trip, they say. Prior to this voyage, we had spent seven years in the South Pacific, and during that time we really understood what it takes to cruise in complete safety. We incorporated all that into this vessel.
As a result,Marama boasts a fuel capacity close to 85,000 litres, and in addition she carries all spares that might be needed for maintenance off the beaten track.
You have to develop a mind set of total self-containment, her owner explains. Everything you might need must be on board from the outset. You cant have where you are going dictated by where you are going to buy fuel next, and the yacht must be able to handle all weather conditions. Preparation is everything.
As a result, Marama has been built to handle virtually anything that could be thrown at her. We definitely feel a long haul yacht should be full displacement, with a deep draught and excellent stability.
Maramas hull was built to incredible standards by Delta Marine. We have been tested in every kind of situation, and the boat has performed incredibly she can even take a 90° knockdown and come back. Weve been doing this for 40 years, and we finally got it right we nailed it.
Marama was commissioned early in 2008, and began the first stage of her big tour of the Pacific with a short shakedown from Seattle to the San Juan Islands.
Over the following year and a half she logged an impressive 14,876 miles as she voyaged from Alaska to Sydney, Australia, taking in the western seaboard of the US before heading to Marquesas, the Tuamotu Archipelago, the Society Islands, Tonga, Fiji and New Caledonia.
Part of the appeal of extended cruising is the chance to experience moments and see sights that are truly unique. For the owners of Marama, a return to Fiji led to a highly emotional reunion with the 240 locals on the tiny island of Wakaya. Indeed, it was one of the villagers who gave the yacht its name Marama means lady in Fijian. More than that, though is the chance to explore otherwise inaccessible areas.
We like the most remote and desolate places, the owners enthuse, like the Tuamotu Archipelago, a series of atolls, which is just glorious. You feel like you are the only people ever to have gone there. Its one of the real thrills.
We couldnt live without our cameras, they say. Its almost sinful not to be photographing what you see out there you need to document it or you will truly regret it. We carried all sorts of different types of camera equipment to cover distance work, underwater, etc and our crew is very much into it as well.
Weve collated everything and put it into bound books that we can show friends and guests. Its a real must.