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May 1 -- From the Rivers of South America to Proa Palindrome w/ Meeting Minutes attached

posted Apr 22, 2018, 2:11 PM by PacificNorthWest MultihullAssoc   [ updated May 24, 2018, 1:01 PM ]
 The 2012-2014 cruise of Ginny and Steve Ladd in the rivers of South America and how that has led them to their next boat, which is a proa in progress.  Here's Steve and Ginny's route :

Northwest Multihull Association May 1, 2018 Meeting Minutes/Notes     


Most of us show up for the pot luck at 630 and enjoy catching up with each other.  There is never enough time to talk with everyone as much as we’d like.  There are so many folks with interesting stories, especially our presenter (see below).  For show and tell Mark brought components of his pedal drive for his entry in the full race R2AK in a 20’ Tornado (I guess thats easier than his previous leg-one crossings on a sailboard).  We oogled the high tech alloy parts he designed then cut with high pressure water jets at work.  It will be fun to send him off from Pt Townsend at the June 14 dawn start.  Its a great all day event the day before too, seeing all the boats and crews.


Commodore Jeff started the meeting mentioning that there is a lot of info on the internet about our presenter Steve Ladd’s explorations through S. America on his small boats.   He extended an invitation to our many talented members to volunteer on whatever committee that interests them, especially tech types to help with the website.  But also Cruising, Racing, Rendezvous, Social, Speaker wrangling, etc….  Let Jeff know via the website or email.  He also called for members to send him pictures and write ups of your sailing adventures.  Even if they are from long ago.  He’s been conversing with Sail Sand Point as to how the clubs can help each other.  The aim is to feed each other folks who are interested in our respective activities.  For us getting kids and adults in their learning programs interested in our bigger boats; the next step.  We’ve bought SSP a Hobie Wave catamaran in the past and maybe another is worthy of discussion.  We could also have a club volunteer work day where we can help them repair and set up boats in their fleet.  Or send our kids, grandkids to their excellent sailing programs, (I’ve known 2 of their high school age instructors from our neighborhood)  Jeff will keep us posted on the discussions.


Jeff mentioned another benefit of the club is our lending cache.  We have 4 boat stands, a load cell for accurately weighing boats and some industrial racking that Martyn and Linda donated to the club which has been used as a temp tent framework for boat work and can carry very heavy loads for lifting, moving and weighing pretty big vessels.  They are 14’ high.  Contact him for more info via the website of the google group we have.  He didn’t say but I suppose Ballard Sails would still honor their offer to measure sails for club members who are interested in racing PHRF.


Then our new members Jon and Lesley were introduced.  They just bought a cool Corsair Pulse 600 trimaran.  Welcome.  They offered to display our club banner as they will be participating in the Opening Day boat parade this Saturday May 5.  


Dan our Cruising Captain is still working on a schedule.  He also spoke for Vince our Race Captain who requests that you send him RSVP for the Everett Rally on May 11, 12, 13.  They need to know how much food they need to buy.  Email RSVP or call:,(206) 909-5655.  See NWMA website for details of our big event.


Mark O. our Treasurer reported $7143 in the account and that we are in good shape.  He is looking for someone to donate an old laptop to the club.  The one they are using for our club presenters has a near dead battery and is very old.  He said anything you may have lying around will be a better unit.  Please give him a call if you can donate one: 206 937-7454 


We the went around the room to introduce ourselves and say what we are up to, as is our custom.  I recall a couple of interesting comments:  Todd said he sailed in Columbia last month.  Keith is jonesing for a big cat to go cruising in.  Mark D has entered the R2AK and in a dead run to get everything ready.  Joel is making progress on his Marples 35 and there is a link on the website to his blog.  Scott from the new Corsair dealer told us a bit about Wright Yachts entry in the R2AK with a not yet delivered Corsair 970 and Northwest Yachting Magazine’s participation and hope to garner some publicity for our club.  I think it was Scott who mentioned Weta’s and prompted a discussion as to how many of them are around.  It seems there are several from the response.  As an aside I heard there is a Mainecat 41 that was rescued from the hurricane in Texas for sale ~100K.  It still needs a rig and sails and probably more.   Steve, the multihull guy from Reno can put you on to this; multihuler at aol dot com.  He’s advertised it on a few forums and It’d be cool if someone up here wanted it.  Anyone want to go partners?????


Jeff then introduced our presenter Steve Ladd.  His is currently working on reconfiguring a 30’ proa orphaned in Pt Townsend after the first R2AK for more adventures.  But, oh boy, are his South American adventures fascinating to hear and ask questions about.  His first was solo in 1993 in a 12’ open boat from Montana to the rivers of South America and back to Florida!  Yeah, you read that right.  He wrote a book:  Three Years on a 12’ Boat, you’ll find it on Amazon.  But he spent most of the evening talking about his big trip, 2009-14.  He and his wife spent 5 years sailing a 21 foot, 7 inch draft lee boarder from; Florida to Cuba, Belize, Panama, Columbia, Venezuela then down rivers huge and small from the top of S. America to Buenos Aries!  LOOK AT A MAP!, (sorry for shouting).  Then he sailed back up a different system of rivers where his wife had a baby in central Brazil, then the 3 continued up to the Amazon and out to the Atlantic where his wife and newborn son flew home to Bremerton.  Then he single handed, hand steering, (no auto pilot or wind vane) up the east and north coast of S. America to Trinidad, the windward islands, etc, where he was surprised by a sneaker wave and shipwrecked on the eastern most part of Dominican Republic.   All with portages and piloting made up on the fly often needing that skinny 7" draft.  They made their own charts from google earth as there are none for the smaller and remote rivers!  Amazing, no one had ever done that before, though his inspiration stemmed from Dan and son Dana Starkell from Winnipeg who did a smaller but still amazing 1980’s voyage in northern South America.  I can’t tell all his amazing story here but he has a well written blog where you can read all about it and plenty of other stuff about him on the interwebs.  Just google the adventures of Ginny and Steve and you will have reading and dreaming for all next winter.  I will post a map of his big trip below.  You really need to look in on his blog.  See the map attached below.


Next month June 5 Spike Kane will tell us about his amazing 2016 R2AK race on his F27 Trimaran.  I’ve known Spike for a while and it will be an inspiring talk for sure.  Unfortunately I will be gone but I hope you can make it.  I’ll also add that after our summer break our first meeting will be Oct 2 where Mark Dix mentioned above will tell how he won the 2018 R2AK on his Tornado……  See NW Multihull Association website for location and details.  Guests are always welcome.


Eric Lindahl