In part two of this two part interview, Elana Conner talks about sailing solo across the Pacific: what made her think she could accomplish it in the first place, what lessons she learned after she got out there, and why it’s made her feels more like herself than ever. We talk weather, electronics, and the frustrations of sailing in the wrong direction. Follow and support Elana at www.peregrinasails.com
As a child, Elana Conner lost both of her parents and spent her school years in foster care, hoping from family to family. She struggled, but managed to finish high school and then college. She learned to sail in San Francisco, less than a decade ago. But personal difficulties and strong mentors convinced her she needed to follow her dream of circumnavigating on her own boat sooner rather than later. She recently sailed across the pacific solo, arriving in New Zealand a little over a month ago. In this first of a two part interview, I speak with Elana about the challenges she’s overcome and how she learned to sail. Follow Elana at https://www.peregrinasails.com/
Here are ways you can support children in the foster care system:
- First, and most basic, when folks shop on Amazon, choose to shop at https://smile.amazon.com/ and choose a local foster care org or CASA chapter. For every purchase made, Amazon will give money to your org, and it adds up quickly!
- Foster Hope is the New Zealand base foster care organization Elana talks about in our interview - https://www.fosterhope.org.nz/
- Together We Rise — https://www.togetherwerise.org/team-building/ — They have a number of programs, including opportunities for corporate team-building projects (like assembling bikes and skateboards, or backpacks).
- Become a resource family in SF to foster or adopt a child from the foster care system: https://sfcaresforkids.org/foster/
- SF Foster Youth Fund — http://www.sffosteryouthfund.org/what-we-do/ — they provide funding and/or scholarships to allow children in foster care to have access to activities beyond the basics, like music lessons, summer camps, etc.
- CASA in California— https://www.californiacasa.org/ — CASA stands for Court-Appointed Special Advocate, and there is a CASA program in almost every district in the country, as well as a national advocacy organization. People who are interested in becoming a CASA go through a multi-month training and are sworn-in at their local court.
- Finally, here is an additional list of ways to help foster kids: http://www.fostercoalition.com/help-foster-children
Lauren Moody fell in love with the sea when she served in the Navy aboard an aircraft carrier. But it wasn’t until after her deployment at UCSC that she got into sailing, on boats that were a little smaller. After moving to the San Francisco area a decade ago, she built a community of sailing friends at the Travis Marina. It was there she first laid eyes on Intrepid, a Bob Perry designed Islander Freeport 36. It was in bad shape, nearly sinking at the dock. But it took some time for her to convince the owner to sell. Now she’s putting much time and effort into bringing the boat back to Bristol condition, doing all the work herself and learning much along the way. You can read about her accomplishments at SailingIntrepid.com
In 2001, while cruising in the Caribbean, my girlfriend Miranda had to be evacuated from our boat and taken to a local hospital due to extreme dehydration. It was one of the scariest experiences I’ve had at sea and I wrote about it in Sailing Magazine’s 2002 Safety at Sea issue. In this episode, I retell that story.
Jim Hancock is the founder and president of the San Francisco Sailing Science Center, a hands-on, interactive learning center that will be headquartered on Treasure Island. He's a long-time Bay Area sailor who has cruised the Pacific, been a sailing instructor, and is the visionary behind this exciting new project.
In 2015, the Vawter family, parents Cameron and Annie with daughters Isa (6) and Adelaide (7), set off under the Golden Gate Bridge aboard their Mason 43, Banyan. They've been cruising the Pacific ever since, arriving in New Zealand last year.
Trevor Hope & Lizzie Shipton // Ex-Musicians Follow Their Dream to Sail the World on SV Loki - Ep. 31
Trev and Lizzie were musicians when they met. When Trev fell in love with sailing, Lizzie was more than game to do what they needed to do to follow their now shared dream of moving aboard a boat and sailing the world. They recently purchased a 43-foot Morgan Center Cockpit in Santa Cruz, California. They're learning the ins and outs of their boat, sharpening their sailing skills, and preparing to head off cruising next summer. They've made a few videos about the experience so far that you can watch on YouTube.
On Oct. 19, 2019, Randall Reeves sailed back under the Golden Gate Bridge, completing his Figure 8 Voyage. I sat down with him aboard his boat Moli to reflect on the record-breaking trip, what draws him to single-handing, adjusting to life ashore, and more.
Tony Gooch was the first person to ever complete a solo, nonstop circumnavigation from the West Coast of North America. He did this in the early 2000s, aboard his 44-foot aluminum cutter Taonui. Nearly 20 years later, Randall Reeves used the very same boat, renamed Moli, for the Figure 8 Voyage, his solo circumnavigation. Randall and Tony have become good friends. In this conversation, Tony and I discuss Randall's epic adventure, the many miles Tony and his wife sailed together - including some harrowing incidents at sea - and Tony's own single-handed sailing adventures.
Five years ago, Garrett and Audrey Ruhland had a life-changing discussion about the five things they most wanted out of life. From that discussion, a dream to travel and sail the world was born. But neither of them knew how to sail. And they didn’t have money for a boat. Last week they sailed out the gate, bound for Mexico and Panama, aboard their 35-foot sloop Thisldu. I talk to them about how they got from hatching a dream to making it real. And where they plan to head now.