S/V Passage - Refitting a Classic (& Building Our Skills) Before Cutting the Docklines

We are working toward our dream, one step at a time, and are prepared to make mistakes and learn from them so we become better cruisers every day.

Vessel Name: Passage
Vessel Make/Model: 1980 Pearson 365 Ketch #324
Hailing Port: Chicago, IL
Crew: David Cole & Brodi Cole
We started sailing in 2004 when David's dad bought his first sailboat, a 30' Hunter on Lake Michigan. David spent many hours on Lake Michigan and when his dad upgraded to a 42' Hunter, even made several multi-day crossings between Florida and the Bahamas. [...]
In early 2010, we made a 5-year plan to pay off our debt, save money, buy a sailboat and take off for the adventure of a lifetime. One year into that plan, Brodi discovered an amazing deal that resulted in us acquiring "Passage"-a 1980 Pearson 365 Ketch-three years ahead of "schedule." We hope this [...]
Home Page: http://www.sailblogs.com/member/svpassage
14 March 2019
30 May 2012 | Chicago, IL
19 March 2012 | Chicago, IL
16 February 2012 | Chicago, IL
03 January 2012 | Chicago, IL
13 December 2011
12 December 2011 | Chicago, IL
09 November 2011 | Chicago, IL
02 November 2011
01 November 2011 | Chicago, IL
19 October 2011 | Chicago, IL
13 October 2011 | Chicago, IL
12 October 2011 | Chicago, IL
11 October 2011 | Annapolis, MD
10 October 2011 | Annapolis, MD
02 October 2011 | Chicago, IL
20 September 2011 | Chicago, IL
12 September 2011 | Chicago, IL
11 September 2011 | Chicago, IL
04 September 2011 | Chicago, IL
Recent Blog Posts
14 March 2019

A New Adventure!

It's been a while since we posted anything because kids add an unexpected spice to life and our implementation strategy for leaving the rat race has changed a bit. We still plan to 'cut the docklines' and travel the world, but sadly it won't be with Passage.

30 May 2012 | Chicago, IL

Back on the Lake!

The blog may have been quiet lately but we sure haven’t been slacking! After receiving the spring bridge schedule (we can only put the boat in and take it up river on certain days approved by the city), we had a mad rush in April to cut our [...]

19 March 2012 | Chicago, IL

Big News!

We weren't kidding when we said in the last blog post that March would be full of big news...as you may have guessed from the photo, our crew is officially expanding to three! Baby Cole should be joining us around September 2, 2012...just in time to help us winterize Passage! In case you're wondering, [...]

16 February 2012 | Chicago, IL

Winter Update

We haven't been MIA because we're busy with boat projects...sadly it's been the exact opposite. While winter in Chicago has been a bit more temperate that usual, it still hasn't exactly been ideal for boatwork. So we've been focusing on home projects that were neglected throughout boating season...how [...]

03 January 2012 | Chicago, IL

Too COLD for Cruising

We truly thought more boatwork would get done this winter, but now that the holidays are officially over it's hard to motivate ourselves to willingly spend significant lengths of time outside doing boatwork when it's already skipping the freezing point entirely! It's official, January is NOT a good time [...]

13 December 2011

Cool Website

I just found a cool new website, and wanted to share. Love the pic/quote on his main page, too!

12 December 2011 | Chicago, IL

A Month of Updates

It's been a rather crazy month for us, without really any time to even sit down and log our updates. The weekend after our last (and only) post in November we did head back down to the yacht yard to get some more stuff off the boat, and try to figure out our head/plumbing system. Our biggest challenge [...]

09 November 2011 | Chicago, IL


Motivation. That one little word has so much "baggage" associate with it, but in my mind truly defines the doers from the dreamers. Ever since Daylight Saving Time ended over the weekend I've struggled to maintain my level of motivation. Between the [...]

02 November 2011

Hump Day, Quote Day!

Well, he wrote the quote anyway...

01 November 2011 | Chicago, IL

Not MIA!

We went down to the boatyard to see Passage on her cradle last Sunday, and it was amazing that it took just 20 minutes to get there! When we got to the boat, we packed up a few things to bring home for the winter as well as started to look at the holding tank to determine how we will remove it. We also [...]

Boat Show Awesomeness (Part 1)

10 October 2011 | Annapolis, MD
Brodi / PERFECT for Spending Boatbucks!
Going into the 2011 Annapolis Sailboat Show, I had so many expectations yet wasn't really sure what to expect at the same time. Last year, we basically wandered all the booths for a little while but spent the bulk of our two days at the show attending seminars and touring every single possible boat (even some multi-hulls). This year was basically the opposite in every way. We attended just one seminar-by Lin & Larry Pardey on Budget Cruising-and stepped foot on just one boat...the new St. Francis 60 ft Catamaran, a yacht so big I can't even confidently call it a boat. I mean, that floating monstrosity has more square footage than my condo!!!!! Craziness.

Last year, I felt like I had no idea what I was talking about if I did have a vendor conversation and this year I knew which booths to see (I actually researched the vendor list and show map in advance) and which to skip. In some cases, I knew their selling points before they said them. (But I do now know how to fit my foulies when we buy them!)

One of our first stops was Lin and Larry Pardey's booth, since they're doing the boat show circuit to promote Lin's new book Bull Canyon. Meeting them was an absolutely amazing experience! I have read so many of their works, and a lot of their messaging (Go Small, Go Now) really helped me commit to taking a chance on Passage even though I knew she would need a lot of work to get back to her former glory. At one point, I felt so silly telling Lin how much her books mean to me but it was so great to hear her perspective on our life plans and to have our dream totally validated by people who've been out there and know what it's like. The best part was when Lin and Larry signed my copy of The Cost Conscious Cruiser...when I read it, I got a little tear in my eye. Lin said, "Brodi and David, I envy you. You can only do something for the first time once." She's right. As much as I might get bogged down in details and planning and worries and doubts...this entire process is magical in its own right. David and I share a dream, and we are making it happen. We might mess up, we might make decisions different that others would or did, but they're our decisions and they're for our dream. There are few things in life greater than that.

I wasn't sure if things could get any better than the start of our first day at the show, but throughout the rest of the show I also got to have a chat with a few bloggers I "follow": Carolyn, who writes The Boat Galley blog (and is publishing a cookbook in 2012 that I'm eagerly awaiting!) and Rich Boren who designed an amazing watermaker that we're oggling, blogs about sailing with his family in the Sea of Cortez, and until recently also had a sistership Pearson 365 ketch.

Then, towards the end of our second day at the show, we got to meet Nigel Calder! For those of you who read this blog but aren't big on boating mechanics, he is basically THE GUY when it comes to mechanical and electrical stuff on sailboats. David and I were chatting with the President and Head Engineer/Designer for Electromaax, when he walked by. They called him over (since I guess they know each other pretty well), and introduced us. During the conversation, Nigel said that he's been promoting their high output alternator with serpentine pulley system all over Canada! Well if Nigel Calder endorses it...

One thing I definitely did not expect was to meet several of the Who's Who of the cruising lifestyle and even have extended conversations with them! While not necessary, it's great to hear that our thoughts and perspectives are on the right track in planning to make all this happen. As we were discussing our plans and our boat with these sailing greats, I started to realize that we're almost two years into our five year plan...and somehow it just started to feel more 'real'. We aren't going to do everything right before we go, so it was time to commit to purchases and make decisions on some big ticket items. After spending our first day talking with all the key vendors we wanted to see, and even some we didn't expect, David and I spent a lot of the ride back to his sister's place (and that night when we were relaxing) discussing what purchases were important for "now" and what we wanted/needed to wait until next year...

See more pics on Passage's Facebook Page!
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Passage's Photos -

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