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Nancy Ibison Sails South After Successful Fall Crew List Party

Richmond Yacht Club sailor Nancy Ibison scored a ride in the 2023 Baja Ha-Ha at Latitude 38’s Fall Crew List Party. Of course, that’s why we have the party, and our online Crew List. We’re thrilled to hear when people find boats to crew on, or owners find crew. We connected with Nancy recently, and she updated us on her sailing adventures. After returning from the Baja Ha-Ha, “I have (successfully) completed the 100-ton classes and am now back on the water. It was a great experience, and I really enjoyed Dan Leininger’s no-nonsense style plus huge Navy ship sea stories.” Dan teaches for Maritime Institute in Alameda.

Nancy Ibison
Nancy Ibison at the helm of the dinghy in San Diego.
© 2024 Courtesy Nancy Ibison

Asked about the Crew Party, Nancy explained, “I went to the Crew List Party for probably the third or fourth time this last fall and had my first success. On past occasions, I had my 9- to 12-year-old daughter along and was hoping to find a boat with other kids or folks interested in having a kid along, because, you know, kids see the world differently. Everything is magical through their eyes … on a good day. We never found the right boat full of adventurers for that trip. She is a teenager now, so she stayed behind — a different phase of life!

“This made me a free agent! The party was fun and high-energy as always; I mingled like my ride depended on it because it did. I talked to a bunch of very nice people and walked away feeling like I had struck out again. I handed out sailing résumés and everything.”

Welcome to Turtle Bay
The welcome totem in Turtle Bay..
© 2024 Nancy Ibison

“Much to my surprise a couple of days later I got a text from Eve and Steve, who are the owners of Chat De Mer, a beautiful 43-ft Fountaine Pajot catamaran. They offered me not a bunk but a stateroom. We were excited to have found each other. We had a handful of organizing calls and emails, and then I showed up at the boat. I spent three nights on the boat in Santa Barbara before they came down. It was great to get to know where things were on board before we added the sailing-adventure part.”

The view from the stateroom in Bahia Santa Maria.
The view from the stateroom in Bahia Santa Maria.
© 2024 Nancy Ibison

“The three of us overnighted to San Diego to get there for the opening Ha-Ha festivities. The morning of the start was beautiful, and everyone hoisted their spinnakers right out the gate. We were having one of those perfect sailing days. As the sun was getting closer to the horizon, the breeze picked up, and we decided to douse. We went forward, tethered on, and struggled with the spinnaker sock. As things often cascade, somehow, we ended up accidentally jibing and wrapping the spinnaker around the forestay. Well, that quieted things down. We two women came up to the bow (bows?) and carefully unwrapped the spinnaker. All good. We were humbled a bit as we stowed it down the hatch. The weather was perfect for kite flying the next day and pretty kites surrounded us, so we worked up the focus and courage to fly ours again. We sent it flying for the afternoon again, and we got it down, literally and figuratively. The three of us could do it!”

The spinnaker
The spinnaker aboard Chat De Mer, looking just right.
© 2024 Nancy Ibison

“From that day forward all the way to Puerto Vallarta was smooth sailing. No mishaps, for boat or crew. There are no crazy sea stories. Uneventful, save incredible sea life viewing from the back deck, delicious meals and some great beach music. The catamaran was a treat; she sailed brilliantly and was so luxurious. I was willing to work outside my monohull comfort zone and sail on a cat for a few weeks, and wow, it was nice! The three of us made it to hot, hot, hot Puerto Vallarta, tucked in the boat at Marina Vallarta, and flew home. She is there awaiting the next adventure with her lovely captains.”

The Baja Ha-Ha
A glorious sunset is one reward for attending the Fall Crew List Party.
© 2024 Nancy Ibison

“And, I am available next November to crew on the Ha-Ha. I am now looking for space for a husband new to sailing, as well.”

We congratulate Nancy on a new-to-sailing husband, perseverance in finding a ride for the 2023 Ha-Ha, and a 100T license! Jan Pehrson featured Nancy in our November charter story; Nancy is now the owner of Jan’s former Islander 36 Hurulu!

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