Our Library

Author: Pete


Here is a list of all the reading material that we’ll be taking aboard Tayrona:


The Annapolis Book of Seamanship by John Rousmaniere

Basics of boat composition, knots, sailing terms.

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Niger Calder’s Cruising Handbook by Nigel Calder

Comprehensive guide to cruising considerations.

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How to Sail Around the World by Hal Roth

A seasoned sailor’s recommendations on cruising equipment and technique.

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World Cruising Destinations by Jimmy Cornell

Port information for popular cruising grounds.

World Cruising Destinations


Get Her On Board: The Secret to Sharing the Cruising Dream by Nick O’Kelly

Miranda got this for me!  Ha!  Just like it sounds.

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Bumfuzzle by Patric Schulte:

A novice couple sail around the world.

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World Cruising Routes by Jimmy Cornell

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World Cruising Handbook by Jimmy Cornell

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Offshore Sailing: 200 Essential Passagemaking Tips by William Seifert & Daniel Spurr

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Boatowner’s Mechanical and Electrical Manual: How to Maintain, Repair, and Improve Your Boat’s Essential Systems by Nigel Calder

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Instant Weather Forecasting by Alan Watts

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The Voyager’s Handbook: The Essential Guide to Blue Water Cruising by Beth Leonard

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Modern Marine Weather by David Burch & Tobias Burch

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The Boat Galley Cookbook by Carolyn Shearlock & Jan Irons

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NightWatch: A Practical Guide to Viewing the Universe by Terence Dickinson

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The Cruiser’s Handbook of Fishing by Scott Bannerot & Wendy Bannerot

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Why Now?

Save the Date, 6x4 final Smaller

Author: Miranda

I’m sure years from now we will certainly ask ourselves what in god’s name prompted us to quit our jobs, plan our wedding, get married, and leave for a sailing trip set on circumnavigation all in the same 12 month span.  Hell, who needs “years from now…” ?   I’m already convinced that we are certifiably nut-so.  It is entirely possible that this is the worst time for us to plan a trip around the world.


But I saw it.  I saw it in Pete’s face.  The juxtaposition of getting married and consequently deciding to put off Pete’s sailing adventure put me dangerously close to being the wife who kills her husband’s dreams.  Whether it was my decision or not.  The timing was just too close.  A connection between the two was unavoidable.  At one particularly tense moment of wedding planning, I saw my life flash before my eyes.  Not in the morbid, oh-my-god-I’m-going-to-die sort of way, but in the way that makes you realize that the time to act is now.  It just has to be.  There is no other way.  The alternative is a life worrying that I caused this adventurous man, a man who’s insane search for  adventure and self-growth caused me to fall in love with him in the first place, to lose a piece himself that he’s spent years of his life dreaming about.  It wasn’t my past life that flashed before me- it was our future life.


We feel ready to leave Chile.  We feel ready to start our next adventure.  But, we’d like to stick around our next school for a little while.  We’ve both realized that to grow professionally, to see our students grow, graduate and mature into young adults, and to experiment with different courses requires a certain time commitment.  Our next teaching job could quite possibly involve down-payments, day care, and munchkins.  We are looking to give a coup de gras to our irresponsible, DINK-iness  in the most thrilling way possible.


So, we have what we hope to be enough money.  We have the drive.  We have our health, and we have parents who will, begrudgingly, put us up in their basements if it all goes to shit.



Sailing Lessons

Author: Miranda

I really had no idea what to expect when we signed up for a package of sailing lessons at a fairly small man-made lake in the next canyon from where we live in Santiago.  I think “fairly small” is a generous description as well.  When we told our boss that we wouldn’t be returning to teach at Nido, that we would be sailing around the world instead, and that we were signed up for sailing lessons at Piedra Roja, he chuckled and said, “you realize that lake is about the size of the fountain in front of school.”

But alas, everyone has to start somewhere, so we were excited to begin.  Our first lesson was spent with Gaby, our instructor, five adults and two children in a small dinghy.  Gaby started out by manning the tiller and the main sail herself, but quickly allowed us to take turns steering and working the mainsheet, tightening and loosening it (sheeting in and out, technically) as the wind pushed and pulled at us.




On our second lesson, we advanced to little Walker dinghies, meant for 1-2 people.  We spent our hour in pairs, zooming around the little lake, and taking turns getting the hang of the wind, the sheets, and hopping from one side of the boat to the other as we tacked and jibed.


The next week, we did more of the same, with the exciting change of being solo skippers of our Walker.  I was slightly nervous to be out on the lake, alone in a sailboat, but these are quite possibly the most forgiving dinghies one can find, and try as I might, making a billion mistakes, I couldn’t tip the thing over.

For our final lesson, we took turns in a Laser, which was the polar opposite of our comfy, safe, beamy Walkers.  One wrong move, and you’re immediately in the drink.  I can still remember our instructor yelling “sueltalo” or “caza la vela” as she followed in her inflatable dinghy, attempting to fix our mistakes before they toppled us over.


The Laser was both a lot of fun and quick piece of humble pie.  After only four short lessons, we felt like we were getting the hang of things, yet this little buddy instantly highlighted our mistakes for all onlookers to see (did I tell you there’s a mall at the entrance to the lake?  How chileans do love their malls.)

So, yes, Piedra Roja was a tiny man-make lake.  Yes, we tooled around on boats with a fraction of a percent of the displacement that our cruiser will have.  Yes, Pete (being an experienced sailor) was probably bored out of his mind.  But, we had fun, and this girl has to start somewhere.  The books that I’m reading about sailing have become instantly real to me, as looking at wind diagrams is one thing, but truly feeling the wind is another.

This certainly won’t be our last sailing lessons or courses, but it was a start.  I’m looking forward to taking lessons is my first language.  When you have literally milliseconds to respond, and your brain has to first translate “gira el timon hacia la vela ahora” into English, you soon find yourself bobbing in water thinking, “oh, NOW I know what she meant.”