The seemingly smallest thing can drastically change the experience of a journey on the sea. Like forgetting to take seasickness meds. Then what a difference a few hours makes — from night to day, from dark ominous waves to calm electric blue sea. Sail with us to Key West!
Hope you enjoy!
Lauren & Kirk
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Start Your Morning with some Sailing Inspiration
[Lauren] Last time on Sailing Soulianis. Are you ready to go to Key West?
I’m so ready.
We’re going for a good, long sail. Probably an 18 hour sail. This will be the first time we put up the sails in three weeks and we were just sailing down the channel, down the ICW, and we were sailing, but it wasn’t like a passage, so…
[Kirk] All right, are you ready? We just hit eight knots. ♪ Overboard fell a sailor ♪ ♪ No one saw but the waves ♪ ♪ But they’ll never tell her ♪ ♪ Drifting away ♪ ♪ Overboard fell a sailor ♪ ♪ No one heard but the wind ♪ ♪ She’ll never believe her ♪ ♪ Blowing away ♪
[Kirk] Nothing can really prepare you for sailing overnight. We’ve done several now and every one of them has brought a mixture of amazement and fear. But this one was by far the most difficult and rewarding. Lauren had forgotten to take her sea sickness meds before we left, and by the evening she was down and out. That left me caring for the boat all on my own. Nightfall brought the most serious sailing conditions we’ve experienced yet. The wind shifted to our beam and built at 25 knots. The seas, now massively confused, were breaking into the cockpit and tossing us around. By 3:00 a.m. I was spent. I had no energy left to do anything. Not even to worry, which is my forte. I’m the worrier on board. I’m always tweaking something, making sure we have a safety net, a plan for everything. It was pretty surreal to just let go and let the boat do her thing. And the amazing thing was, she did it. And she did it marvelously, instilling in us a newfound respect for our boat.
18 miles to go to the pass. And then we’ve got, what, like another 3 miles to get to Stock Island?
[Kirk] Something like that.
[Lauren] 11:00 a.m. arrival. Later that morning we sailed through our first squall.
I should probably get my jacket ’cause it’s gonna get cold.
[Lauren] All right. After a brief rain and a cool breeze passed over us we were welcomed to this. Key West! Cheeseburgers! Naps.
[Kirk] Oh, the solar shower’s gettin’ warm. Ooh, our anchor got cleaned. It’s bright.
[Kirk] It is bright. Just flying past us. Damn. Any time we’re near a marina we gravitate towards the docks. There’s always something or someone interesting hanging about and Key West is full of all kinds of boats. From dinghies to this 105 foot schooner, modeled after one of the most famous boats in U.S. history. The schooner America which won the first America’s Cup in 1851.
Kirk, they need some new chafe gear.
[Kirk] Do they? I was at Key West once. I drove down here with my buddy Nate. Neither of us had ever been here before, and we said, oh, cool, let’s drive to Key West. But I think we were only 19 at the time, so we couldn’t go to any of the bars. We had no money, so we couldn’t go out on any of the boat charters, so we drove and saw the southernmost part of the United States and then slept in the car on a side street. With the windows down and hoped we didn’t get mugged. We didn’t really sleep very well. And then we turned around and drove home.
[Lauren] There’s definitely no shortage of things to spend your money on in Key West. But unless we can eat it or drink it we’ve got no place to put it. So after a bit of window shopping we enjoyed a rooftop cocktail and then it was back to the boat.
Today I’m going to be installing our Outland hatch covers. We have two hatches on our boat, a pretty large one up in the bow and a smaller midship hatch that we get a lot of sunlight through that adds some heat to the boat. We were gonna make some canvas covers and I found these Uutland hatch covers and thought they were pretty awesome looking. So this is the hatch cover. They go on the outside of your hatches to prevent crazing of the Lexan glass. And then they block all of the heat from getting into the boat as well. And they’ve got these cool little snap-lock fasteners that just twist to lock and unlock, and put the covers on. Hey love?
[Kirk] Can you close this midship hatch? I just realized I might get some water in there. Thank you. So you just line up all your edges. Then these guys just go right there. And then you lock it down by twisting them shut. That’s it.
It’s a hot one here in Key West. So we rigged up a little shade for Kirk to finish the last hatch cover.
So I’m just using a very diluted mixture of dish washing soap and water so that there’s no oils and no slime, so that the 3M adhesive can stick nicely. All right, what do you think, does that look clean?
[Lauren] Wow, that looks pretty.
And this just slides right on like that, and Bob’s your uncle. And it fits very nicely. Boats. Those things just flew out of that bag. All right, that’s where she goes.
[Lauren] And we thought that boat was big. This thing came in last night. We were trying to figure out their dockage fees. Think it’s actually like, well, so if it’s $4.50 a foot, this has to be, this has to be like a hundred and…
It’s at least 150.
Their boat is taller than our mast.
So it’s 140 times $4.50, 150 times $4.50. We’re really good at math.
It’s $4.50 plus $2.25, it’s $6.75.
That’s it per night? That’s a bargain.
[Woman] Yeah, I know. I haven’t seen one in a marina in a long time.
[Kirk] And speaking of this marina, it is, hands down, the nicest we’ve ever been to. There’s a great air conditioned captain’s lounge and tons of impeccably clean showers. But best of all, as guests of this marina, we’re allowed to use this gorgeous pool.
Which was all well and good, but the reason we were at this marina was actually because we had to leave. I know, a bit of a 180, right? Back in episode 44 we talked about how we were hoping to make it to the Keys before we had to leave the boat for our work trip to Utah. Are we even going to get to the Keys before we hae to go to Utah?
I don’t know. I hope so.
[Lauren] We managed to get Soulianis to the only marina that had availability for us. And because this trip was the reason we were staying there, Kirk’s work was footing the marina bill. The project was a two day video and photo shoot, requiring Jeeps with four-wheel-drive to access the off-road locations out in the desert. Kirk was the producer, running a crew of about 10, and me, the still photographer. They were long days, shooting from dawn until dusk.
[Kirk] But we ended up with a little extra time after wrapping the shoot, so we took off exploring.
[Lauren] We also rented mountain bikes, and while I’ve only gone trail riding a few times, I think it’s one of my favorite sports. It’s fast enough to get my adrenaline going, but forces me to focus nearly 100% of the time on what every part of my body is doing. For someone who spends most of her time in her head, it turns my world inside out.
[Kirk] Only a few miles from Moab lie the La Sal mountains, and in less than an hour we were at 10000 feet, leaving the desert floor and 90 degree heat behind us.
[Lauren] Oh, it’s so cool. That’s where we anchored, right?
[Lauren] Driving Miss Daisy.
[Kirk] Where would you like to go, Miss Daisy?
[Lauren] Key West, please.
[Kirk] You got it. That’ll be $1287.97 for your Uber fare to Key West from Orlando.
In our last few episodes we’ve been doing a few giveaways to celebrate the launch of our Sailing Soulianis shop. The first person to correctly answer the following trivia question in a comment below, as well as sending an email to email@example.com with the correct answer and your YouTube user name will be the winner of this shirt. You can get it in this tank top or you can get it in a regular crew neck. Now, for the most important part of this entire spiel, the trivia question. What year is our Tartan 37? Good luck.