Andy & Mia

The Caribbean 1500 and the people that make it special

13 Nov
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My favorite thing about big sailing events – whether boat shows, rendezvous', pot-lucks or rallies – used to be the boats. I love nothing more than walking the docks and looking at boats, and I like them all. Some more than others to be sure (give me an old classic over a modern plastic bottle anyway), but all of them nonetheless. 

There's just something about being around boats that lights me up inside. Looking at the subtle differences in the way they're rigged. How some catamarans have spreaders on the mast and some don't. How clever little design touches like ...

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Caribbean 1500: The Decision to Depart Early

5 Nov
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I'm writing this from my hotel room in Hampton on Sunday night, the day after the Caribbean 1500 fleet went to sea (the day it was supposed to go to sea). I need to confirm this with Steve Black, but I think it's the first time in the event's history that it actually left the Chesapeake early. 

Fall on the US East Coast is always a difficult time for weather forecasting, and this year was perhaps the best (or worst, depending on your perspective) example of that. The challenge in planning an offshore voyage this time of year is the

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The Impossibilty of Weather Forecasting

5 Nov
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Note: this is re-printed from the March/April 2012 issue of Yacht Essentials Magazine. Thanks to Chris Kennan and Brad Kovach for permission!

“This is complicated.” That is what scientists in the 1960s and 1970s decided a simple graph depicting a chaotic curve – the ‘Lorenz Attractor’ – was trying to say, without having to speak a word.

Fifty years ago, long-range weather forecasting was already a scientific impossibility, and Edward Lorenz proved it. In 1962, Lorenz published his definitive work on meteorology in Volume 20 of the Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences, a paper made public to little fanfare

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Morning Training and Hurricane Sandy at the Caribbean 1500

27 Oct
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Mia and I just got back from a short run this morning (in the dark). I'm annoyed that the clocks won't change until the day of the start – November 4 – because otherwise the sun would be up when we're out carousing around Hampton.

We set off towards Hampton University, over the bridge and down the walkway onto campus grounds, around 6:30 and it was pitch black. Hurricane Sandy is on the way, and you could feel it in the air. It's extremely humid outside this morning, and windy – but the rain isn't here yet, and that's why ...

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Why I get better sleep on the boat…

24 Oct
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I've made it a point lately to read the newspaper (or a book, or a magazine) in the morning with my coffee rather than jump straight onto the computer. I was up watching the Presidential debate on Monday while simultaneously working on the podcast website, and ended up staying up until 11:30. When I did finally go to bed, it was immediately after I'd turned off the laptop and brushed my teeth. My head was spinning when I laid down. I slept horribly, and was tired all day yesterday.

Mia has started tracking my good and bad days in her ...

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Schooner Race watch onboard Rodney Carroll’s Tayana 37

16 Oct
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Note: unless otherwise noted, Mia Karlsson has taken all the photos. 

We left Annapolis early and drove up to Sparrow's Point, to the Old Bay Marina where I'd been twice before to help Rodney do some work on his Tayana 37. The boat had been hauled out for over 3 years, Rodney doing the refit himself between sculpture projects. Two years ago I helped him step the mast, when the boat was on the hard. Earlier this summer, Mia and I joined him and his wife Narda (and their brown dog Brownie) on a sweltering day to help install his ...

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Andy Schell’s ‘Two Inspired Guys’ podcast – Episode #4: Ben & Teresa Carey

16 Oct
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This podcast has been over a year in the making. Essentially, it's my best friend Ryan Briggs and I interviewing people who love their lives and live their dreams. A lot of our guests are sailors – not all of them – but I think you'll dig the people we talk to. Athletes, artists, adventurers, restauranteurs, farmers, horse trainers, photographers, you name it. The point is to discover that which makes people excited about life, what drives them to pursue their passion. It inspires us talking to them, and I think it will inspire you listening to them.

That said, ...

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Great Chesapeake Bay Schooner Race: Photos from this year, memories from prior years

15 Oct
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I'm going to write a story about our day with Rodney Carroll (coming tomorrow)…for now, enjoy this awesome photo of the Pride of Baltimore II that Mia took today out sailing with our friend Rodney. And check out his sculptures sometime too. They're amazing. Story – and more photos – to follow tomorrow…

In the meantime, enjoy this Spinsheet piece I wrote about our friend and six-time schooner race veteran Brian Duff. This piece was about his race in 2009 on a 52-foot brigantine – but in 2010, Brian skippered the smallest-ever boat in the race, a tiny ...
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Running across the Atlantic

15 Oct
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This one has been a long time coming. For a while now I've thought about putting down in words another of my passions, beyond just the sailing thing. Since high school I've been more and more into endurance sports. I got really into endurance sports the first year I lived full-time in Annapolis, racing in three triathlons and a couple amateur cycling races over the course of one summer, and doing quite well in them. I lived in an apartment at the time, kept my road bike in the living room and went out often before work (I was crew ...

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Five days offshore across the North Sea

26 Sep
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This post was originally published in four parts on andyandmia.net. I got inspired to edit and publish it here after reading Pat and Ali Schulte's Weird Things Happen at Sea post today. Mia and I had some similar experiences in the North Sea earlier this summer, namely with a moving oil rig (or so I thought) and a rogue wave on an otherwise sunny evening. Here's our experience…

By August 8th, we were were back to sea, Inverness in our wake and Scandinavia just over the horizon! Arcturus was gliding along at 4-5 knots on ...
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