Archive | Sailing

One of the houses on the shore.

How People Live On a Rock in the Sea

What do you do to prepare for a hurricane if your house is ten feet from the sea? This is the question on my mind as Josh and I row our dinghy to the shores of Isla Pardito, the smallest inhabited island I have ever seen. It is less than two hundred meters wide, and […]

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Getting after the growth.

More Shade, More Speed

Our hull grew a fur coat for summer. Here’s a short video I made for ICWA, the Institute of Current World Affairs, to explain what we do when this happens. Combine not enough sailing with lots of warm, stagnant marina water, and you get not only a restless boat couple, but a truly furry hull. […]

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Women at the wheel. Laura is obviously not enjoying herself.

Sailing Anyone?

“No no, I’m okay,” Lindsay says, nearly mustering a smile. For her first sail, we have carted Lindsay in bad weather to a remote island in Mexico. I’m searching her face for signs that she might kill me. It’s 6am and we just spent the night in a beautiful cove on Isla Espiritu Santo—bobbing and […]

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Syrinx sails.

A Boat (Owner’s) Life

The saying goes that the two best days of a boat owner’s life are the day of purchase and the day it’s sold. Over the past nine months, Josh’s incredible wooden cutter, Syrinx, sat patiently in the Berkeley marina while Josh and I sailed Far to Mexico and lived aboard in warmer waters. Before I […]

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A rainbow over my shoulder sends us into the night on our sail away from San Juanico, the best wave I have ever surfed.

The End of the Beginning – What I’ve Learned

We made it to La Paz. Three months ago. I’m a little behind on the blog. So I shall catch you up with the most painful/glorious moments. As soon as darkness fell on our sail out of San Juanico, the autopilot broke. The autopilot allows us to steer the boat electronically by setting a heading, […]

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In his natural habitat.

Feel Your Feet

Overlooking sets of waves, surfers seem to slip from an expectant watching into a quiet meditation. The rhythmic swell washes over their faces as if the tide cleans their minds. Perhaps they are transported to the belly of the sea, to the barrel of a wave, and the gaze gets to be still amid the […]

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Off the blue dock and into blue sea.

North to South, Three to Two

Despite my relaxed pleasure in conversation with Eduardo at the north end of Cedros Island, when Chris and I stepped out of the dinghy onto Cedros Island’s only town, I felt distinctly and awkwardly…female. We scrambled up the slimy, barnacled rocks under shacks on the short cliffs at shore and made our way into the […]

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A little breather with the sea dawg after the morning howler.

Delight in Discomfort

“We’re not in any trouble. We’re just uncomfortable.” Josh utters these words at 12am. We are anchored at Abreojos, a name meaning “Open Your Eyes!” and just now striking me as, perhaps, a warning unrelated to the underwater hazards. It’s a clear night, and the little bit of shelter that this low, dusty corner of […]

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A fisherman sets a homemade rebar anchor.

What You Can Learn From A Man With A Fridge In His Panga

With dolphin escorts off the bow, we departed midday from San Quintín for an overnight sail to Cedros Island. Once in open water we were able to turn off the engine and sail into the blissful quiet. Off the starboard beam, a whale breached. (I obviously did not take this magnificent photo below. I will […]

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Pink calm and a waning moon bring in the light of say on the way to San Quintín.

A First Night at Sea

Day 5 – Into the Ocean Night After two sleepless nights in Ensenada, we had another intentional all-nighter in front of us: the passage to Bahia San Quintin. We set out in the early afternoon, slipped out of the harbor, and headed south. My first night on the open ocean (under control of the boat, […]

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