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Fair winds!

Dave and Anke
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Monday, January 7, 2019

Farewell to LUNA

Farewell to LUNA


We designed and built her for our own needs, following Phil Bolger’s Advanced Sharpie concept. Launched in ‘97 of the previous millennium. Lived aboard for thirteen years and sailed a very good chunk of that. Anke, Scups (our canine partner) and me. Great years.

We sold her to another couple who lived aboard for five more years. They sold her to an officer in the Coast Guard who wanted to use her as a (motorized) hunting platform. After that things get fuzzy.

Well… under a further series of owners, she slid downhill. Fresh water leaks developed and went unattended. Ventilation went by the wayside. Rot set in.

In the end, we bought her from the Harbor for a dollar, salvaged her copper and remaining gear and burned her on an island beach.

It’s hard to do.

A boat is still something more than a mere object. We dreamed her into being. We put her together with our four hands. Lived and loved aboard her for almost half our lives together.

Experiences sere and lang were had aboard her. Friends and family sometimes sailed along with us.

‘She’ (in LUNA’s case) partnered us, sheltered us, carried us, looked after us and depended on us. Taking her mortal remains apart by craft and force, saving what could be saved, then setting a match to her… it’s a solemn task.

We could see in her abandoned interior that the last(?) owner had struggled with life. Bills unpaid. An acquisitive obsession packed the hull with a super-abundance of stuff… worn clothing, broken tools and rotting food.

Yet she had tried to make a home for her child. There were sparkly, upbeat sayings tacked to the walls, small treasures assembled here and there, and drawings in a juvenile’s hand that showed that there was joy to be found in life.

LUNA’s decks were still watertight. Her woodstove was still operable and showed signs of use. Her walls, while softening, still held the wind at bay, and her ever strong bottom, the sea.

LUNA was our home.

Our friends’ home.

And maybe at the end - for a while - she was home to a mother and daughter in their time of need.

Fare thee well

PS. We cut the hull down to a 'barge' to deliver the copper plate for transport. LUNA's last voyage was under tow but she carried her own with dignity.


  1. Boats, especially boats that you've lived on, are special. It's hard to let them go.

    1. Hi Sixbears,

      Enough to cement one as an animist!

      Dave Z

  2. Man, what a gut punch feeling hearing that. We didn't cruise Luna as much as we hoped to (should have added a outboard early on as training wheel aide and not fallen in love so much with Sitka culture) but what we did do corrupted me totally to flat bottomed, shoal draft sailing. We had a liveaboard motor sharpie home in Florida but so many times we reflect back and say something like "If we'd only had Luna in the Florida panhandle" and such. She'd have been SO MUCH FUN in those semi-tropical, skinny waters.

    If anyone had to demolish her I am glad it was you two: the ones who dreamed her up and built her and spent so much time bonding with her. I still have her full rig down here in Mexico! Even deconstructing her rig felt blasphemous though and it was a chance to inspect each hand made batten, each seizing, and all the loving details in her rig design and construction.

    But we do have parts of her still. If you made off with her wood stove then good on ya. That beauty kept us so warm often in winter visits aboard (despite the single ply uninsulated walls). And the bunk was a delight to sleep in and a pleasure to make love in (thanks for the hatch right in the center of the bed.... use your imagination at how handy that was).

    But, overall, just damn sad to see her cut up on the beach like that. Some one could have taken her, wrapped some new ply around her and glassed it well, and a few odd mods later she'd STILL be sailing about Alaska and maybe beyond.

    I feel immensely privileged to have lived aboard Luna and sailed her the little I did. She was one of the most unique and beautiful vessels EVER. R.I.P..

  3. *** SNIFF ***

    A beautiful tribute, Bob. So Glad it was you and T.

    Dave Z

  4. Touching Tale. Still, glad the humans in question are still intact and under way!!

  5. Dave, My own dory, Mistral, has become a lubber's art studio in Port Townsend. But the dream lives on.

  6. Dave and Anka,
    Luna could not have asked for a better finale than you offered her. An icon in Southeast, I still remember the first time I saw her ghosting along, all sails set in Tenakee Inlet, the picture of grace and extreme beauty. You let me helm her briefly under the bridge in Sitka and I was astonished that she sailed like a dinghy, so light on the tiller. Thank you for not letting her rot in the harbor, she deserved and was given a better end than that. Bob Mutter, S/V Counting Coup