Wes is a life long adventurer and has been perpetually inspired by his brother Bob and Bob's wife Gruffie (who took Wes up his first mountain at 11 years old). Their tireless and philanthropic international environmental and medical related missions have inspired Wes since he could spell Bob. Wes also has a really long list of crazy outdoor adventurers and life mentors - but we will spare you the verbosity since this isn't an awards speech. However, it is worth mentioning that Bill Tillman and Bob Shepton stand out as recent expedition sailing inspirations. "Tillman is seriously - one tough and inspirational hombre..." - Wes
Wes has 30 years of sailing experience on ocean, lake and racing sailboats. He once finished dead last in a regatta, hours after they took the race bouys out of the water and was forgotten about. But celebrate he did, after his handicap rating still managed to place him 4th from last overall. "I can't imagine what that captain felt like when he found out 'he' was actually last! At least he had a head start on the rum." - Wes
Wes has had a beer bottle thrown at him for sailing TOO much when refusing to turn on the engine in a dead calm at 2 am, in the dark, in the rain, and in the cold - sailboats were meant to sail after all which means Wes is a sailor first, motor boat guy second - despite threats from a mutinous crew... (In the future, if you do sign up as crew - consider yourself warned and bring a spare beer bottle...) He has also been described as doing things the hard way. People think his mantra must be: "what doesn't kill you makes you stronger - and perhaps wiser" (although that is often debatable).
Wes' most memorable sailing experience? If you ask him: "Solo sailing in dense fog that devolved into a crazy whiteout snowstorm on Lake Dillon Colorado - I was wearing a Patagonia puffy jacket at the helm, I couldn't see anything and I remember tasting the fat wet snowflakes on my lips. I wasn't cold. I wasn't scared. I was happy and completely in my element. I could have been anywhere at that moment; Antarctica, Patagonia, Greenland, and I was..." - Wes
This helps to explain why high latitude sailing is a natural choice for Wes' journey into expedition style sailing!
Wes was fortunate enough to travel through North America, South America, Central America, Europe, Asia and the Caribbean having been a member of the US National Cycling team in the late 80's and a broke backpacker, triathlete, climber and sailor in the 90's and 2000's. While he saw more pavement during his international cycling career than actual scenery - he aims to rectify that by seeing the scenery via SV Hakluyt. Wes also spent three decades climbing and skiing internationally - his fondness for more remote mountainous places are clearly a byproduct of these adventures. It is safe to say the accumulation of these global travels and adventures have been THE driving force behind sailing - and he has finally found the right boat and the most amazing (crazy as he is) partner to travel to remote and beautiful locations.
Wes relishes his sloppy penmanship (except when he can't read his own writing), he doesn't relish loosing boat-car-house keys - but it happens with unusual frequency, he is a serial book reader, a dog lover, a slow runner, a star ski movie skier (at night - in his dreams), a horrible cook, a drone snob, a published photographer, a constant tinkerer, a self taught (mediocre) welder, a gadget lover, a miss-speller of words without spellcheck, an inventor, a project lover, he loves - and hates all things "computer", a long time academic (he decided 2 undergraduate programs, 2 graduate programs and 2 years of a PhD was enough academia) - a computer scientist, and an electrical and computer engineer - he is now focused on steering his energy and passion to climate awareness, a healthy lifestyle, and documenting regions impacted by climate change through his professional photography, videography and journalism.
Judith’s favourite quote is “Life is one big adventure” and this is how she lived since she was child. Her mom and people in the small village where she grew up in Germany called her “the wild child” because she was roaming the nearby forest with her horse every day after school, she climbed the highest trees, rode untrained horses without a saddle, explored dark caves and was simply scared of nothing.
The choice of becoming a professional skydiver didn’t surprise anybody. Besides co-owning one of the biggest drop zones in Germany (Skydive Colibri in Munich) she competed in several skydiving disciplines. Her achievements include Bavarian champion in 4way formation skydiving, German Champion in both Freestyle and Skysurfing German Championships, European Champion in Skysurfing, 3rd place Freestyle World Championship and second in the world in Skysurfing.
During a successful competition career, Judith was recruited as a stunt woman for several movies/television shows and commercials performing aerial skydiving stunts!
After she had done very close to 7000 jumps and over 250 hours as a pilot in a private airplane, she found that she polluted the environment far too much and decided to quit all aviation related activities. She helped many horses and people to get along better with the "Gentle Way" and rescued a lot of horses, dogs and other animals that other people gave up on.
After giving up skydiving as a profession, Judith went through severe adrenaline withdrawals, She then took on the sports of kiteboarding and snow kiting. Why not? Both involve speed and kites (with the likeness of parachutes) after all!! It was here she learned to harness the wind without any fossil fuels. A spark ignited. There is just something magical about harnessing wind power...
As she was always interested in a healthy lifestyle and eager to learn something new, she started to study nutrition to become a health coach.
She met Wes, somebody as crazy as herself! Wes taught her how to sail and the new adventure began: Hakluyt!! Combining her love of sports with her new mission to help people to live better and making the world a better place is the ultimate icing on the cake for her life.
Sadly... We must report we lost Chloe in January 2023. She was truly the most zealous crew member on board Hakluyt and we dearly miss her. Dogs bring so much joy and happiness to us - and Chloe was the epitome of Happiness and Joy every waking moment of her life! Below we are leaving her write up as a memorial to this sweet spirit that touched and warmed our hearts and left us far far too soon...
“Free kisses for everyone!! - Happiness is my middle name!
I was born at a place full of other dogs who were roaming around free. I learned quickly if you are nice to people they give you food. One day (I was still a puppy) a woman came and said I was too thin and I need a vet and she took me to her home. They had great food and I got a lot of attention,
a few needles and they bathed me every day. Great stuff!
After 10 days of this I met my mom. She picked me up from the bathing place and took me to a big ranch with lots of horses, cats and other animals. So much fun to chase them all!!!
I love to jump on bales, climb trees as I pretend to be a monkey, go for runs, catch gophers, eat, jump up on people and wag my tail. I know when mom says “no no no” she disagrees with me. The best thing though is our new life on
the boat. I love sailing and swimming and exploring new shores!!!” Arrrrrrrggggghhhhh - ahem - I mean WOOF!
“I can hardly remember the time before I met mom. I remember that I was afraid of people and I lived in the bush all by myself when I was about 2 years old. I was hungry and cold most of the time and got attacked by
some wild animals. One day in April, when I was laying in the middle of the gravel road to get warm from the spring sun, a truck stopped and I saw mom for the first time. She had food and water. But I didn’t quite trust her and growled at her when she wanted to touch me. But she didn’t give up on me and came to visit me on the road every day and brought food. After 10 days I decided to join her and jump in her truck and we drove to my new home. There where other dogs and I was mostly hiding in a box with blankets that she put outside for me. I always peaked into the house when she was going in and out and one day I entered the house and could not
resist to lay down on the cozy couch. From this day on my life changed and mom and I became best friends. We go on trips together, I run with her when she does snow kiting, I wait on shore when she goes kiting on the water and now I get to join her on the boat. Great adventures are waiting for us and I would always protect her with my life.”
Elske is Norwegian for "Love". At least that is what my dad told me. Then he found out I am a verb and it really means "TO love". That's OK - I love to love and my name has love in it so I am good with dad having the best intentions. I am the shy one in the family but often mistaken for a real life teddy bear - "He's so snuggly" people always say!
I came from a Reservation Rescue and I had a pretty hard start to life. That is until my dad said "YES - I will keep him!!!!!!!!". I love; sun puddles, paddle boarding, barking at Flynn, Mom's food, warm fires, and long walks on the beach...
I am a sailing pup true and true - I love exploring new beaches and new places with all my best friends here with the crew of Hakluyt!!!
I just don't understand why Mom and Dad don't listen to me. I talk and I talk and I talk to them! The only thing they understand so far is when I want them to get up in the morning - cuz sunshine = playtime!! Play. Yes Play. And play some more. Then play some more and more and more!! My favorite thing in life is to play. Specifically play with a ball, any ball. If it is round and remotely resembles a ball I will play with it. I often find lonely balls abandoned in the forests and deserts we travel to! Who on earth looses their ball?? Do you have a ball I can play with? I also LOVE playing with my sister Chloe and bossing Elske around. Woof! I am not afraid of anything! And I LOVE LOVE LOVE exploring and adventuring in new places!! By the way - do you have a ball?!