Andy & Mia

Heavy Weather Sailing // Thoughts from Paul Exner

5 Apr

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Note from Andy:

“This post was written by our friend and Isbjorn’s racing skipper Paul Exner, of moderngeographic.com. Paul writes from Chiapas, Mexico, where he’s onboard his Cape George Cutter ‘Solstice,’ that he built himself. He’s en route to Hawaii, relocating his family after Hurricane Irma destroyed their home and way of life on Tortola in the BVI. Family & heavy weather is on Paul’s mind as he readies ‘Solstice’ to cross the Pacific…


How Paul Exner Thinks About Heavy Weather Sailing

Heavy Weather Sailing is an unavoidable and necessary part of being a yachtsman. Either you embrace it and ...

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Isbjorn’s Big Refit in Sweden: First Look Since September

10 Jan

Inside the main workshop at Vindö.

Inside the main workshop at Vindö.

On Sunday Mia & I made the pilgrimage to the west coast of Sweden to check in on Isbjörn for the first time since September. That was the last time we had seen the boat. Back then, she was still afloat, her rig standing, but stripped bare of sails and gear, on deck and down below. We’d emptied nearly everything off the boat in anticipation of the big winter refit. Sometime in late September, after we’d gone back to the USA for boat show in Annapolis, the gang at Vindö Marin pulled the rig ...

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The State of ‘Isbjorn’ Sailing in 2018 // Essay Podcast

2 Jan

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Note: Today’s LONG blog post is also today’s podcast episode/essay. Tune in and hear Andy narrate all of what follows in episode #221 of On the Wind. Subscribe to the show via iTunes or your favorite podcast app. Or, click the player below to stream from the website or download to your desktop. The text, with lots of photos, is below.


It’s been a LONG time since I talked much about the business on here, and, now three years in (almost) and at the dawn of a new year, I feel like this is as good a time as any. ...

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South Pacific Memories (& a Future?)

29 Dec

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I get inspired to write when reading a really good book. Barbarian Days: A Surfing Life, by William Finnegan. Won the Pulitzer Prize. The book is about, quite literally, what the title suggest. It also dredges up a LOT of nostalgia in me. I just finished reading a section on Fiji, in the 1970’s, when the author and his buddies discovered Tavarua, in Fiji.

I was there too, LONG after it was discovered, off the coast of Nadi, south of the Mamanuca’s, where I first met Clint and his brother Glenn, the first meeting on that trip that would ...

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Low Bridges & High Water on the ICW

23 Nov

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I’ve gotta finish the southbound delivery story.

We never made it to Stuart. After our brief offshore jump from Cape Fear, NC to Jacksonville, Florida, Dad, Tom & I spent three uneventful days motoring down the ICW. The days were boring, but satisfyingly uneventful. 

We met my dad’s old friend David in New Smyrna Beach. The timing worked out such that we motored into town just before sunset. I found a free city dock in front of one of the city buildings just north of the A1A fixed bridge. We maneuvered the boat against a strong NE wind and southbound ...

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Southbound Delivery: A Quick Jaunt Offshore

15 Nov

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I cooked the last of our sausages while Dad drove Meri through the inlet at Cape Fear. Tom napped. The current was with us, so we made 8.5 knots over the ground, motorsailing out beyond the lee of Cape Fear. I served dinner after dark, those sausages with leftover red potatoes and the last of the mustard. While Tom did dishes dad & I set the genoa and Meri aimed south on starboard tack under an overcast sky. The air warmed up quickly once in the ocean – the water remains in the mid-70s and seems to have acted to ...

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Offshore Into the Cold

11 Nov

Chilly willy start to the morning! But beautifully clear skies.

Chilly willy start to the morning! But beautifully clear skies.

We anchored s/v Meri just off the ICW last night around mile marker 265. A nice-looking 35-footer called Valkyrie was anchoring in a similar spot, just to the east of the channel in the only little hole of deep water. He called us up on the VHF as we waited for him to find his spot before moving in ourselves. The sun had gone over the horizon, leaving a brilliant orange glow to the south, that faded into a clear, deep blue sky overhead, with the first stars starting to ...

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A Greyscale Day on the ICW

10 Nov

Capt. Dennis (aka 'Andy's Dad') at the helm in the morning mist a few days back.

Capt. Dennis (aka ‘Andy’s Dad’) at the helm in the morning mist a few days back.

s/v Meri is underway today after a 24-hour pause in Beaufort. Time goes slowly when you have nothing you have to do. 

I went for a run in the afternoon, rain be damned. I couldn’t stand being cooped up in the boat any longer, and exercise is always a cure for the restless mind. I ran east along the waterfront road in Beaufort, keeping a jogging pace on the way out and admiring the fishing boats and white egrets along the way. One big ...

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Southbound: Indecision in Beaufort

9 Nov

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It is what you read when you don’t have to that determines what you will be when you can’t help it.

— Oscar Wilde

Stuck in Beaufort. Rain pours from the sky, heavier now than it’s been all morning. Any last inkling of going offshore today has been officially washed out. 

Dad, Tom & I borrowed the car from the Three Nice Guys at the Beaufort Docks marina and drove to Atlantic Beach for a midday breakfast at the Four Corners Diner, then on to West Marine to get a few supplies. Because that’s what you do during ...

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Mia’s Book Project – “Mot en ny Horisont”

25 Oct

I am super excited to tell you about a book project i have been involved with during the fall.  

Together with 10 Swedish Sailors, we have each written a chapter in the book “Mot en Ny Horisont”. All proceeds will go directly towards donation in the aftermath of Hurricanes Irma & Maria that hit the Caribbean earlier this fall. 

The book is currently available in Swedish and Danish, and maybe one day it will be translated into English and other languages?

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Buy ‘Mot en Ny Horisont’

To give you the back story of the project… It was the ...

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