Pelagic Australis is a tough boat, and the seas we encountered on our more than 500-mile passage through the southern Atlantic were never terribly high, nor were the winds gale force. Nonetheless, most of the time, we had winds between 20 and 30 knots that combined with a sea state that left us feeling pretty knocked around. Life on an offshore passage becomes somewhat regimented: you rise for your watch—usually woken from a short sleep, you try to dress in the dark so your roommate can continue to slumber, while being hurled around a space the size of a large closet. Then up to the pilothouse in your minimum of three layers (long johns, fleece or sweat pants, offshore bib, thermal undershirt, longsleeve fleece, offshore jacket, sea boots, hat, and gloves. After a cup of coffee or tea and a bit of breakfast, you wedge yourself on to the pilothouse settee (the far end is known as "the ejector seat," because there's nothing to brace yourself against when the boat lurches violently) or strap on a lifejacket and sit in the cockpit, in a bit of a stupor while you await commands. You're invariably tired and feel like the Michelin Man…in fact, all the gear made me feel like if I could wear one more item it would be a day-shape signaling "Restricted in my Ability to Maneuver."