Watertribe: Everglades Challenge

Scroll down for information about Graham and Alan Participating in the race this year.

What is this race?
The watertribe is a group of like minded small boat enthusiasts started by by Steve Issac known as “the Chief”. These brave men and women participate in annual unsupported multi day challenges or “races” (depending on one’s goals). They meet every year in Florida among other places for the Everglades Challenge. The Everglades Challenge starts the first weekend in March. The best way to get a handle on what this race is about is to watch the video below “THE CHALLENGE” by Warren Richey. A veteran challenger, he labored to create this wonderful documentary about the race.

More information about how B&B is participating can be found below.

Who is participating?
Graham Byrnes and Alan Stewart are both participating in this years Everglades Challenge which begins in Tampa Bay, FL and ends in Key Largo, Fl. The event is approximately 300 nautical miles and is completely unsupported. Stops must be made at three checkpoints along the way all with their own challenges such as low bridges, shallow water, and tidal currents.

Click here to see a full list of participants in the event. Select either Everglades Challenge 2017. Note that there are 5 classes of boat that can enter the event from kayaks to sailboats. For a review of what the different boat classes mean, read this.  The short version is:
Class 1 = Kayaks/Canoes with 1 sqm sail.
Class 2 = Kayaks and Canoes with no sail allowed.
Class 3 = Sailing canoes with rigs that can stow inside the canoe.
Class 4 = Sailboats
Class 5 = Multihulls

How can I follow along?
The Watertribe website includes a “tracking map” where the entrants can be tracked. All participants are required to carry a SPOT satellite Tracking unit.
-Select EC2017 for the event.
-Select “class 4” for small sailboats to see how Graham and Alan are doing against similar boats or all to see everyone.
-Graham’s “tribe-name” is ROO. Alan’s “tribe-name” is SOS.
-Click on “regenerate view”

There will also be discussion on the watertribe forum as well as the watertribe facebook page. These sources typically have very up to date information about the challengers, who has dropped out, who is sleeping, who has broke down, etc. You can also check on the messabout forum for a thread on the Event.

More about Graham Byrnes:
Graham (AKA: ROO) is a Naval Architect and principal designer of all B&B boats. He is entering his latest design in the Watertribe Everglades Challenge 2017 for another bid. Last year he won his class (single male class 4) in the boat while it was still in it’s testing phase and unpainted. Now painted, his boat is still a mostly stock CS17 Mk3 with the addition of a spinnaker and a self steering wind vane (Watch a video of the wind vane here) of his own design. He has also incorporated a solar panel into the fore hatch as well as a built in Ice box in the cockpit. Some video of his race last year below.

Where is Graham now?

Click here to see pictures from Graham’s build of ‘Carlita’ his CS17 Mk3 on the Messabout Forum.

Click here for a complete construction Gallery of Graham’s boat.

More about Alan Stewart:
Alan (AKA: SOS) is also entering this years EC with his father and long time race partner Paul Stewart (AKA: DancesWithSandyBottom).

Alan and Paul will sail on Southern Skimmer the EC 22 that Graham built and sailed to multiple watertribe victories.  Paul and Alan built a Core Sound 20 in 2008 after meeting Graham at the Everglades Challenge in 2007. They have sailed their boat in numerous Challenges and they hold the current record for Class 4 sailboats in the Everglades Challenge in their Core Sound 20 ‘Dawn Patrol’. The record is now set at 2 days 2 minutes and was previously held by none other than Graham Byrnes.

Last year Alan sailed the Expedition sailing canoe to a victory in the Ultimate Florida Challenge.

Other interesting Links:

The Watertribe Event Rules Book.

Required Equipment list that all participants must have.

Videos from Previous Challenges

Watertribe discussion forum