Sunday, May 31, 2015

Top 10 "Must Have" list

There are certain items we find ourselves using everyday that we couldn't imagine not having. We hope you find this list useful in the event you are preparing for your own cruising adventure. In no particular order here are our TOP 10 Must Haves:

NALGENE WATER BOTTLES. Every day and especially on passages we use our water bottles. Only in a few places have we found that the water being served isn't purified and thankfully we've brought our own. On long passages it can be hard to ensure that everyone is drinking enough water. With everyone having their own bottle, I ask the girls to drink at least one bottle worth of water a day to guarantee that no one gets dehydrated.

SUNSCREEN. Sun up to sun down we are slathered in sunscreen. We purchased our gallon sized bottle of sunscreen off Amazon. Do NOT buy expired sunscreen as it's worthless. Make sure all of your sunscreen contains at least 5% Zinc Oxide. The stuff with zinc in it is harder to rub in, but it works better and stays on longer.

120 GB IPOD.  Why, oh why did Apple quit making an Ipod that holds this much music? We had to search Ebay for ours. A day without music on the Terrapin? Not a chance!

3 GALLON CANVAS BUCKET. Seems so simple, a canvas bucket. We use our bucket daily to wash off out our cockpit and clean up the decks. When we catch fish while trolling and especially since Phil started spearfishing, he cleans fish almost every day off the back of the boat and we use the canvas bucket to splash off cutting board and clean up the back deck.

BOAT GALLEY COOKBOOK. Ever hear of the girl who was so culinary challenged she could screw up a bowl of cereal? That's me.  Life with a decommissioned freezer (that's a whole other blog post) and without a microwave (we haven't missed it once) has forced me to learn to cook. Over the past few months I've somewhat impressed my family and myself with some of the meals I can now make. According to Phil, my banana bread is out of this world! Best part of this cookbook are the conversion charts it offers which is especially handy as it can be tough when everything you buy at the store is in a metric measurement and your recipe isn't. This book  will also give you substitute ideas for almost everything. 

SSB MODEM. Our single sideband (SSB) radio is connected to a modem that allows us to send and receive text emails from anywhere. This allows us to keep in touch with family and other cruisers. Most importantly, we can also download weather forecasts from anywhere on the planet.

KETTLE AND FRENCH PRESS. My brother gave us a large backpacking french press that's wrapped in a neoprene sleeve. The neoprene sleeve keeps our coffee warm for at least 3-4 hours, which is huge on a passage, especially in the middle of the night.

ZIP-TIES. Move over duct tape there's a new Sheriff in town! Need to attach your GoPro to the side of your boat for a time lapse sunrise photo session? Grab zip-ties. Your snorkel clasp broke off your mask? Sounds like a job for zip-ties. It's tough to look around our boat and not see a zip-tie hard at work. 

PARACHUTE CORD. We use parachute cord to add extra line while trolling, create a line to dry wet clothes,  as bow lines for our kayaks, etc. Like zipties you can never have enough parachute cord.

WATERPROOF BACKPACK. How we ever left on this adventure without a waterproof backpack is beyond me. We did have a large drybag, but not a full on backpack. Strolling through Tenecatita we saw a waterproof backpack for sale. A lady had random things like kitchen supplies, ladies bras and one waterproof backpack thrown on a table for sale. Not sure how much these are in the States but we gladly paid $35 for ours. We use our Over Board backpack almost every day. 

RECHARGABLE BATTERIES.  Everything uses batteries. Any time the engine is on we're charging up batteries of all size. 


  1. Fun post. Thanks

  2. Very informative and helpful! Practical cruising advice gives the rest of us great ideas - thanks!

  3. I love your Top 10. I couldn't agree more.