R2AK - Team Funky Dory

Team Funky Dory  is racing to Alaska and needs your help!

Who we are: Two Mainers that love and care about the ocean. We are using the race to raise money and awareness for the lasting protection and preservation of our oceans.

What we are doing: Restoring and modifying a 16’ Swampscott Dory to row and sail 750 miles from Port Townsend, Washington to Ketchikan, Alaska as part of the 2019 Race to Alaska . We set sail on June 3rd. Whatever we raise up to $6K we will be splitting 50/50 with Pacific Wild, a nonprofit which fights for the protection of the environment and wildlife along the north pacific coast of North America. Anything raised above $6K will be 100% donation.

The story of our boat: Our boat was given to us by a stranger who shared a common goal: get people to care about our oceans. Originally built in 1978 by Freya Boatworks of Anacortes, WA, we found it in 2018 living under blackberry bushes and in desperate need of repair. It has been a long road, but we are nearly finished with the arduous process of restoring and modifying it to endure the rigors of our journey. All modifications and most upgrades to the boat have been salvaged, repaired and given a second life (with the exception of some very crucial safety and survival gear). By keeping our costs as low as possible, doing as much work as we can ourselves (hundreds of hours, literally), and reaching out to as many people as we can, we have maximized our ability to donate and get people involved. 

Your support will help us achieve three goals:

1) Restore and equip a traditional wooden boat to travel the Inside Passage from Washington to Alaska using just the strength of the wind and our bodies! No support, no coaches, no motor - just a couple of ocean lovers out for a true test of skill and endurance. 

2) Raise as much money as we can for Pacific Wild, a nonprofit founded in the heart of the Great Bear Rainforest and Sea and dedicated to its protection. The coastline and forests of British Columbia are irreplaceable; it possesses a quarter of the world’s temperate rainforest and a wilderness and marine environment comprised of some of the most beautiful and unique wildlife on Earth. Serving as a nursery and breeding ground for a diverse range of species large and small, the Great Bear Rainforest and Sea  contributes a disproportionate amount to the overall health of our oceans and planet. It is crucial that the well-being of this area is maintained for the future of our world. 

Pacific Wild pulls in First Nations communities, scientists, NGOs, commercial interests, and individuals to support research, public education, and community outreach with the goal of producing lasting environmental protection for the region. We have tremendous respect for the work they do and encourage you to check them out to see what your donation will help them achieve.

3) Use our trip to inspire others to care about our oceans and act to protect them! We will be using the attention the R2AK garners to get as many people involved in the threats facing our oceans as we can. We are going against our social media instincts and seeking attention. We are getting publications. We are producing media. And we are talking to anyone who will listen about what we care about. And we care about clean, protected, well-managed oceans.

THANK YOU for your help! We cannot do it alone and are truly grateful for your support in whatever form it takes. 

What we need: Funds to complete the journey and donate to protecting the coastline. During our restoration process, we have received generous donations of work, supplies, and expertise which have lowered our estimate for what we need to race to $3K. Therefore, whatever we raise up to $6K we will be splitting 50/50 with Pacific Wild. Anything raised above that will be 100% donation.

If you are interested in making a larger tax deducible donation you can donate directly to Pacific Wild's US chapter which can be found HERE .  If you choose to do this (and we hope you do) just do us a huge favor and add a comment at the bottom of the page about what brought you to the site. This allows us to better understand our impact as well as plan to do an even better job in the future.

Boat Items we are raising money for:

·         Canvas and hardware to build relief dodger (a forward cover to keep spray and other things wet to               a minimum)

·         A wicked set of oars

·         Drop in sliding row seat and outriggers/oarlocks

·         Shop space at the Northwest Maritime Center

·         Anchor (9lb Rocna or plow type)

·         Used sails and associated modifications (we are on the hunt for a small asym spinnaker/drifter in                   particular) 

·         Sail track pieces and various blocks to update the traditional sailing rig we already have, Harken                     traveler controls (E2230 or 2740)

·         Solar panel and batteries to power our navigation equipment, cameras, and tracker

·         Ballast/modifications to the centerboard

·         Compass, charts, and additional navigation supplies

·          Additional Flotation 

·         Miscellaneous resins, glue, hardware etc.

·         Provisions for 3 weeks' worth of fairly intense physical activity

We are investing our own funds to pay for the entry fee and using our personal equipment for this journey. We want to make clear that the money you are donating is going towards a better future for our oceans and wildlife. If you have anything on the above list you would like to donate or anything else you think we might need please send us an email at [email redacted]

A very special thanks to:

Ballard Printing for donating some epic business cards

Bar Harbor Interiors for making a dodger to keep us dry

Brion Toss Yacht Riggers  for helping re-rig and improve our traditional sprit rig 

Duckworks Boat Builder's Supply for helping us keep our boat afloat, safe, and comfortable

The Artful Sailor Whole Earth Nautical Supply for helping modify a new set of sails and repair our old sails using holistic and sustainable methods.

About us:

Thor Belle and Pax Templeton both grew up in tiny towns on the coast of Maine, poking around tidepools and boating in the Atlantic Ocean. Thor is happiest when it's cold out, had a boat well before a car, grew up commercial fishing, and has worked on or around boats for as long as he can remember. He recently got his 100 ton near coastal master's license in Port Townsend, WA. His knowledge is built on many years of experience on the open ocean delivering sail boats in the North Atlantic, teaching environmental education and big-boat sailing, and working at a commercial sailing business in Seattle. Pax has been guiding sea kayak expeditions through the San Juan Island’s tidal currents and explaining its ecosystem for 3 years. His father has done upholstery on boats for 40 years and he grew up going in and out of marinas and sailing any chance he could get. They have both spent years traveling around the world and completed lengthy expeditions in wilderness and ocean environments.

Thor and Pax have degrees and backgrounds in environmental education and fisheries and wildlife biology. They wish to use their skills and passion to advocate and work for the conservation of our marine world. Your support will help us be a part of the change we wish to see.

What is R2AK?

A grand question indeed - each year a group of truly masochistic individuals race boats without motors from Washington to Alaska via the Inside Passage with no support. Extreme tidal currents, rough weather, and a wilderness environment all make the challenge a bit more extreme.

The payoff? First place takes home $10K and second gets a box of steak knives. Our chance of winning against fancy new sponsored race boats? Slim to none. If we were competing to win, we would be in a different boat. We believe R2AK will help us bring our message to the broadest audience possible, enabling us to raise public awareness and money for protecting some of the most beautiful and ecologically vibrant coastline in the world. We are trying to do a lot with a little and hopefully have a bit of fun while doing it.

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Pax Templeton 
Seattle, WA

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