Phoenix is an Ohlson 41, built in 1967 by Einar Ohlson in Goteberg, Sweden. The rolled steel hull was made in the Hitter yard in Amsterdam. She is a late CCA racing boat 40’9″ on deck, a cutter-rigged sloop – quite similar in design to the better-known Rhodes Reliant (but with a more modern cutaway forefront under water). She draws 6′ 6″, has a beam of 11’3″, and displaces approximately 13 tons. She has had many names, been sailed from Northern Europe to South America by Seven Seas Sailing Association Commodores, has been through the Panama canal, and then lived in California for many years. She has raced twice in the Bermuda cup, in 1968 and again in 1971. Her racing number was 1776.Phoenix is a US Coast Guard registered boat. She has 3 or 4 sister ships, made of wood and fiberglass and perhaps another one of steel. One (fiberglass) was in Campbell River, BC and has been sold in California; another races frequently in New England (Ariana: yawl-rigged); and Alegria (wood) is now in Hyannis Port after being converted to a gorgeous day sailer.
We’re both most at home near the water. We love diving, swimming, sailing and dislike living too far from salt water.
Jon: Bos’n, Engine-meister, Ship’s carpenter
Jon has been a commercial fisherman on both US coasts, a wooden boat builder for Rybovitch Yachts, a Folk-boat owner, a single father, a step-father, a marvelous husband, walking boat encyclopedia, and criminal defense attorney. Through all these stages he has been avid about boats and the natural world. His particular skills include wood and fiberglass artistry, bosunry, block building (see above right), diesel engine repair, and self-sufficiency systems. His favorite post is in the foc’s’le or puttering about on deck.
Marie: helmsman, nav/comm officer, chief cook and bottle-washer
Marie spent her childhood racing small boats in and around the Chesapeake Bay. Mostly she crewed for her father, Bob Toler (aka “Barometer Bob” of Marsh Harbour, Abaco, Bahamas) including the Albacore World Championships in Plymouth, England in 1973. Since then she has been a flight simulation programmer for Navy planes, wind-surfer, single-mother, step-mother, wife, architect student, solar enthusiast, and university webmaster. Her particular onboard skills include canvas work, navigation, packet-data, weather prediction, WordPress, and piloting an irascible single-screw vessel. Her preferred post is behind the wheel with sails up and engine OFF.
Williwaw: Chief morale officer
‘Willow’ is a Portuguese Water dog who is willing to go sailing since it keeps the “pack” together. She dislikes the engine, but is comfortable on the boat when it isn’t making that awful noise. She particularly loves the dinghy which gets her to shore, and dolphins who are good company. She hates boobies that land uninvited on her boat.
Zeke is our Aries wind vane. We depend utterly on him and are either devoted to him or ready to strip him down to parts. But he takes no power, can drive the steering wheel or the emergency tiller, and goes all night and all day with just an occasional squirt of lubrication. His oar did remove the top half inch of Jon’s finger while 1000 miles off-shore, but let’s assume that was caused by Jon’s inattention rather than Zeke’s malice. His name, as best we can reconstruct, was inspired by the Prophet Ezekiel, possibly out of some feeling that Zeke must predict the weather, since he always seems to know where it is coming from. It seems like many sailors name their wind vanes. Do you?