Artefactos Navegables 2009

September 02, 2009 By: erik Category: Colindres, Funny, Games, Photos, Spain, Videos 758 views

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Flintstones Car FloatsEvery year in the harbor of Colindres, they hold a Carrera de Artefactos Navegables, which translates to “Sailable Artifacts Race”. Basically they race handmade contraptions that float, very often involving plastic barrels normally used in the salting process of the town’s anchovy industry. Rowing is a big sport in northern Spain, dating back hundreds of years when fishermen rowed out to see to hunt whales. This race puts sort of a comical twist on the sport.

We saw the event the first year that we lived here, missed two years, and then went again this year. I’m always blown away by the creativity and detail of the designs, which are only meant to float and impress for about an hour. Prizes are awarded for creativity and originality as well as speed around the course, with various different categories, depending on the number of occupants the craft can hold. Below are some photos I took of the participants in 2009, and a high definition video that should give you an idea of the fun of watching the event.

Heineken Rowers
This team just has some legless Heineken bar chairs nailed to some styrofoam.

Heinekin Rowers
These guys look good posing for pictures on solid land. As you’ll see in the video, things didn’t go so well once they hit the water.

Local Police
A comically boxy police car.

Egyptian Dragon Thing
Some sort of Egyptian (or Roman?) sea monster with throne.

Hot Air Balloon
A misshapen paper mache hot air balloon.

Uglified Shrek
Looks like Shrek got hit with an ugly stick.

Flintstones Car
This Flintstones car was my favorite design.

Flintstones Dashboard
I love the detail of the dashboard. It’s a Mercedes, apparently.

Fred Flintstone
Fred prepares for the race.

A floating tank.

Red Baron
A biplane (Red Baron?) complete with machine gun turret.

Flintstones Car Floats
The Flintstones out on the water.

Bathtub Rowing
A bathtub with shower curtain sail.

Plaza de Toros (Bullring)
My second favorite was this bullring, complete with its occupants dressed as bullfighters, except one, who was wearing a bull suit.

Egyptian King
The Egypto-Roman king and his court of bikini-clad subjects.

Floating Police Car
The police car never did finish the race because the wind got a hold of it and blew it to the other side of the harbor. There was nothing the two rowers inside could do.

Fred Brings The Beer
Fred swam to shore on an important mission: to get beer.

Fred Flintstone Floats Drinking Beer
Fred Flintstone downs a cold brewski.

The video is a little long, but I still find it entertaining. I think that next year I’m going to try a single wide angle timelapse shot of the event. That could be cool.

I never cease to be amazed at the quantity of planned activities that my small town manages to organize every year. People really put a lot of hard work into these events, and they brighten the lives of all the residents. Bravo, Colindres!

  • So was there an actual winner of the “race” or the style competition?

    • There was, but we didn’t stick around for the prize ceremony. Of the large crafts, I think that the hot air balloon won.

  • Surely a hot air balloon is cheating.

    • Twas paper mache and merely decorative. But still, I don’t care how hard you row, you’re never in control of your destination in a hot air balloon. I’m pretty sure balloons only have one axis of control.

  • Raul Colindres

    I am the third one classified under style (police car) and the second one in the race (pencilholder)