5 Lessons Learned from Managing a Crew

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When Cheeky Monkey reached the Canary Islands after five days at sea, it was clear the crew needed a stiff drink and some space. This was our “shakedown,” our test run for the Atlantic crossing with our full crew of six: Meg and Kristi, our friends from the ’13-14 Clipper Round the World Race, Morgan, a French solo sailor we…

7 lessons learned catching our first fish

7 lesson learned catching our first fish mediterranean turf to surf

“Fish on!” I hear John scream, slowly nudging me out of a deep sleep below deck. I pull on some clothes and rush up on deck to find Ryan running around the cockpit, desperately searching for something. “We don’t have a gaff! Wait, I have a trident!” He pulls a long-handled deck brush out of the lazarette. “No, that’s not…

Making it Work in Menorca

making it work in menorca turf to surf sailing around the world

As I pulled on a layer of thermal underwear and dug out my buried collection of wool socks, I realized that Ryan and I had out-stayed the warmth of yet another region. Being October in Menorca and already too cold for flip-flops, it was time to leave the Mediterranean and the Balearic Islands and start making our way towards the…

The Shoreseeker Challenge: Rowing Across the Mediterranean

shoreseeker challenge rowing across the mediterranean

The first time our rowboat capsizes, I am completely unprepared for such a violent experience. Though, it’s true, I imagined this moment many times in flutters of pre-race panics, I also convinced myself that my fears were irrational, that the images in my head of being trapped underwater, held down by the weight of a rolled-over boat, were exaggerations; byproducts…

Sailing to Spain: A Homecoming

ibiza spain travel turf to surf

When we pull into Cala Benirras in Ibiza, after 1400 nautical miles and eleven days at sea, it’s hard to fathom where exactly we are in the world and how far we’ve come. It feels warm and familiar, like we could be pulling up to any island in the Caribbean. It’s the closely packed boats full of naked people that…

Dodging a waterspout in Almerimar

cheeky monkey almerimar spain turf to surf

When Ryan wakes me up at 6 am for my watch, he looks tired and defeated. “I’ve been motoring at full speed for the last four hours and we’ve made barely any headway,” he says. “And now we’re almost out of fuel.” He shows me on the charts where we are. We’d passed Malaga a few hours earlier and the…

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