How You Can Help!

Matt needs your help to accomplish his goal of sailing the Northwest Passage!  By helping Matt you’ll be raising awareness for the Chesapeake Region Accessible Boating and their goal of making the joy of sailing available to physically and/or developmentally-challenged individuals.

The easiest thing you can do is spread the word!  Please download and print out the  Meeting the Challenge Brochure and post it in your sailing center or yacht club!

If you can help Matt & CRAB out with a donation of some kind, please visit

42 thoughts on “How You Can Help!”

  1. Hi Matt! My son, Gabe, is in your Mom’s 3rd grade class here in Austin, TX. We love to hear about you and can’t wait to follow you. I’m sure you are as fantastic and witty as your Mother and blessed with all her love, strength, and integrity. My son absolutely adores her. We look forward to sponsoring you and will pray for your safety and success! With much respect, The Rayer Family.

  2. Hello Matt —

    All your CRAB friends, particularly Karl Guerra, Anastasia Hopkinson, Al Towle , Art Savage and Tom Spitzer check in with me, eager to hear of our latest phone conversation. What they don’t bknow is how dryptic our cinversations are since we are both such cheapskates over cell phone minutes.

    Know this: You have a huge bunch of CRAB/Annapolis friends who think of you, pray for you and in each one’s different way believe in your ultimate success. Your strength and power of your preparation, your “McGyverness” will get you through as seen in the Volvo starter episode.

    We hope that some of the followers of this fantastic trip understand that this is still a solo trip, a nonstop trip still and an example of Brit (Simon Edwards) and Canadian (Jon Earle) ingenuity and generosity helping you along toward that goal The bill was sizable and we hope that that knowledge will bring in some donations top off the fund which was close to being spent out.

    Hang in there, Skipper…Don and the CRAB Support Group.

  3. Hello again, Matt, from all your CRAB friends —

    I am hemmed in currently, abed for the last six weeks with a pressure sore on my butt. Looks like another three weeks at least and I feel like I am blocked from going anywhere like a vessel surrounded by by icebergs, to use an analogy more appropriate for your current situation. Enough about me…

    I am getting calls asking about you snd I have been refering them to your website so there is a big crowd watcging your progress.

    Your writing is so well done and the observations and historical comparisons make us feel the wonder of your experience. Coupled with your feelings you bring us into your world allowing us to to share it in our imagination. At least that is how it is affecting me so keep it up.

    Hope to see others commenting as I and the Rayer family have. It would be nice if the donations start rolling in. I can’t help feeeling that we did not structure the mechanism for bringing funds in though I don’t want it to crowd in on your adventure and dull the joy of your sharing.

    Keep the word pictures and photos coming — you are doing so well. Best regards from all your CRAB friends and remember:

    Bastardem non carborundum!


    1. Don,
      I would love to see some kind of fun indicator on the home page of Matt’s blog that would show how much has been raised. For example, maybe every time there is a donation an icon of a pirate ship would raise the jolly roger a little higher on its mast.

      Thanks for all you have done to help our adventurer on his voyage.

    2. hi matt. Can you post a couple of pics of your engine starting problem? I’m no expert , but i do know that sometimes another set of eyes on a problem can sometimes be the greatest help in the world. you’ll have more than just my eyes on it! Just tryin to help. I know that feeling. jim

  4. Hi Matt. I have now read all of your posts. I heard you on NPR last Saturday. It was the Weekend Edition report from Unalaska. I have dreamed of going along the coasts in my kayak, and then across the Aluetian Islands into Russia. There is a string of Islands that you could follow all of the way down to Australia. What joy! Anyway, I will print out a bunch of posters and hang them in our local sailing club and the marinas here in Palm Beach, Florida.
    But I was wondering if you could post a blog item on what it took to prepare for a year without being able to go to the store. I would like to see your supply list and hear about your planning process.
    It would also be good if you wrote in more detail about your GPS units, how they performed, and more about how the predict wind unit works, what it looks like, etc…
    Glad you have made it through the coldest part of your trip. Watch out for pirates.

  5. Matt,

    When I last saw you we talked about how arduous journey the Northwest passage would be. And now it’s done. I remain very proud of you. I think back to that young kid I first met, it is with great joy that I see you use that innate tenacity, grit, and sheer determination to accomplish this feat. (although it did contribute to my grey hair when you wer youger–smile).

    Continue to dream big. You have the audacity to believe that you can do this and you have acquired the talents you need to accomplished this venture. Bravo!!

    Eagle Rock celebrates you. My heart swells with joy at what you have done thus far. May Poseidon continue to smile upon you. Safe journey. Ever excel. Philbert

  6. Welcome to the Bay Area Matt (from 500 miles away). It’s amazing that you gone 10k miles so far. Keep it up and safe sailing. You can make it.

  7. Hi Matt —
    Congratulations on the Equator Crossing. Another (sea)milestone behind you
    Your CRAB fans are still rooting for and you and your struggles are part of every meeting conversation.
    Hope your duct tape supply lasts the voyage..
    Best from all of us in Annapolis, Don


    Regarding the grinding noise, the Albin Vega has a nasty tendency to have issues with the mast support structure. Specifically, the beam directly beneath the mast is not thick enough (I think I read already that Matt had addressed that issue) and secondarily, the vertical structures on either side of the doorway carry the load down to the lower bulkheads. There is a small (about 3/8) stainless bolt at the bottom that can give way, and then the weight of the mast is pushing down on the hull area on either side of the ballast area. If not attended to, it can literally push right through the hull. I don’t know if Matt dealt with that issue before he left, but might be a good idea to pass the info along to him.

    Larry Bissell
    Albin Vega 1493

  9. Hello Matt,

    Heard about you on NPR and I am following your journey! Enjoy reading your posts. Safe travels to you.

    All the best,
    Cat H.
    Oswego, NY

  10. Hi Don. Am following your journey with great interest. I have owned an Albin Vega for 30 years now, and it has never let me down, despite the conditions.. I’ve always known that I could get a bigger boat, but I would not necessarily be getting a better one. Cheers.


  11. HI MATT,




  12. Hi Matt we read about your journey in the mesa az. newspaper, we are praying for you when we say grace each day. looking forward to each posting you make. we are from Kamloops, b.c. canada be safe your surrounded by our prayers.

    1. Congratulations and all the best for you. First for sure for your unique trip, but also for your fresh autihntec blogs, what was the very best I ever read from a guy like you.As elder sailor, with an Albin Vega for several years now, I probably have some ideas what you just did.I hope you wouldn’t find the homecoming event more challenging than the past period .

  13. Hi Matt,

    I am following your fantastic voyage everyday and I am glad that you are almost past
    Cape Horn. You are doing an incredible job sailing into the record books. Keep it up and Happy New Year! Much success in 2012.

    Hans at SCANMAR

  14. Matt –Yikes! Hooray! and all that stuff! It was great to get your phone cal as you pass The Horn.
    Seeing the rocks makes it real but don’t get too close. Glad that you are having such a beautiful day and are able to keep a full main and a reefed jib in 20 Knots of SW wind.

    We salute you as you pass this biggie. Best, Don

  15. Hi Matt, hi Mike,
    congratulation for rounding the Hoorn…

    I want to know , if You are using HAM-Radio during the Trip ?

    All the best for the rest of the trip and safe travelling

    Knut nr BREMEN (Germany)
    owning an SY Pahntom 28

  16. Matt,
    We read about your voyage in Crusing World Magazine and right away we logged into your web site to read about your experience. We just bought our first sailboat in September and it is docked in Annapolis in Back Creek.

    We admire you for what you are doing and are asking for a safe journey for you in our prayers. We love reading your posts! The pictures you posted so far are wonderful and we look forward to seeing more after you return. We want to be there in Annapolis when you get back to welcome you home!

    We are going to make a donation to CRAB!
    Happy Sailing!!

    Michelle and Dan

  17. Your still in our thoughts and prayers. i just finished reading a sailing book about the first woman to complete a solo , nonstop unassisted around the world in 1987 from australia. what timing . will watch for your next blog. safe sailing matt.

  18. Hi Matt-

    Read about your journey today in an article in the Washington Post. I have a 32 year old 27′ Walkins sailboat in Galesville (south of Annapolis) and I’m sure it puts wind in her sails to know the age of your boat and how well your are doing. Best of luck for good winds and following seas! I made a donation to CRAB for you.


  19. Matt, You are the man.

    Washington Post sports section article about your quest today.

    Can’t wait to see you back in the harbor in Annapolis.

    Tim Rhodes (a fan).

  20. Matt:
    I caught your article in the Washington Post today, inspiring to say the least. I’ve been working a lot lately – almost robotic – but while reading your story at the end of a 12 hour work day I found myself floating away from reality, swaying back and forth in my seat as if on a boat myself. Perhaps one day I’ll have a chance to make it on a sailboat.

    Thanks for sharing your epic adventure and hope you’ll share the next journey just the same. Cheers!

  21. Matt, you are definitely our hero of the millenium. If you look real hard as you pass Virginia, you’ll see us waving from the shore. Hope to get to see your arrival. Wow! Bill and Barbara Lidell

  22. Hello Matt,

    Salaams (Peace) from Detroit, man! We were in Annapolis last week and read your story in the Washington Post – your crrrazy, mind boggling, head banging against the wall, run down the street screaming epic story of an adventure and test of a life time. My family is from the Egyptian port city of Alexandria and we have salt water in our blood and salt air in our lungs – there is a deep love of the sea, its danger and its beauty. I feel what you meant about how the sea understands you, I feel my soul propels me to seek salt air and that’s where I feel at equilibrium.

    I know its lonely out there, maybe this has been your greatest challenge. Maybe it is the quiet silence, like an oath taken by monks across the globe, that leads you to your greatest depth of knowledge and treasure…peace.

    I admire you. I envy you (a little). I will say a prayer to Almighty God to bring you home as safely as the day you left and rocked in the arms of those you love as the waves rock you homewards.


  23. Read the great article about your challenge in the Washington Post Sports section. Made a donation today to CRAB and will continue to follow your efforts so I can be sure to be in Annapolis when your finish. I will be sure to have a case of really good beer waiting for you too. Best of luck the rest of the way.

  24. Sir,

    On a cold, wet morning commute to work, I read the story in the Post. It moved me to the edge of tears. It took me some time to figure out why. Fact is, some of us are still here, safe on land, drudging to work, getting near-lost in the minutiae, but thinking, always thinking, on what noble adventures might yet be out there. What tests might be before me, or for that matter — before all of us–for me to really understand my own capacity, my potential. To est who I am. Or to test what we are? What is the next challenge — for us as individuals, or us as a human race? Imagine what might be possible if we took on some of the world’s most pressing problems–climate change, food shortages, global health, improving our education systems– with the kind of strength, determination, and resolve that you have demonstrated?

    By recapturing my imagination, you have strengthened me, and you have strengthened us.

    Thank you. May God speed you safely to Annapolis.

    Andrew S.

  25. Hi Matt,
    The Washington Post article is making a great impact, as has your remarkable and amazing voyage. Your adventure is so inspiring and your name should go up there with the pioneers of small boat sailing: Slocum, Knox-Johnston, etc., although we know that’s not why you are taking on this challenge.
    I hope others will join me in helping you reach the goal for CRAB.
    Stay safe and may the wind and sea be kind. God speed you to Annapolis and home.
    Priscilla Travis
    p.s. my ship’s cat is named Mrs. Chippy (Shackleton’s ship’s cat, if you remember)

  26. Matt sorry to hear of your troubles, don’t lose heart, still praying for safty and a miracle that there won’t be any more problems and the ones you have will see improvement somehow,

  27. Dear Matt,

    I am a 4th grader in Washington, DC. I read the article about your journey in the Washington Post. I think you are amazing and will be following your trip till you finish. I think it must be really hard that you have to pump for 30 minutes to get one glass of fresh water. I was so excited about your trip that I decided to do my Science Fair project on desalination. I can’t wait to see you come in at Annapolis. Good luck!

    Your friend,


    1. Just finished wahictng your homecoming. You are a humble hero. Love the shirt you ARE Popeye the Sailor MAN!Hope to catch up with you in Annapolis soon.Steve B.

  28. Hey Matt: Been keeping up with you for quite awhile now, really awed by your perseverence and spirit. As this last stretch seems just that, streaatched, keep your goals short – you’ll make it. Seems you’ve got a good handle on it, making future plans and keeping yourself entertained one way or another. Wish I could be there for the big day but know that so many folks are cheering you on and will be raising a glass of fresh water in your honor! Rick

  29. Hi Matt, we’ve been following your prgress with interest, horror and delight since about November 2011 – you went through the NW Passage at much the same time as another OCC boat, Imvubu, so we tracked you both. Congrats on an incredible achievement: you’re up on our website and our facebook page regularly.
    And happy birthday for 6th – enjoy your cake and cardboard candles!

  30. Happy birthday Matt ….
    We have been following your trip
    Hope the rest of your journey is a safe one

  31. Matt,
    I can only imagine, when following the track you have been making these last few weeks, how frustrating it must be to be so close to your goal. Patience is the most adventageous strength you have right now, but it’s being tested. You will pass the test and the goal will be met in good time. See you in Annapolis when you get there.

  32. Hi Matt,Its Pat Sheehy.Congrats on your journey.Do you still talk to Anna? When the dust settles I will take you to Thursdays for crabs again.Paul Morris says Hi.Peace and luck Pat

  33. Hi Matt
    It brings tears to my eyes to see you so close to your destination. My husband started following you in the very early days and now we are both admirers of you. Your so positive and its just so refreshing to read your reflective writings and about how you feel about being out there. You have shown that you are very resiliant and “never say die ” certainly applies to you. Hilton and I have done ocean voyaging in a small sail boat (32ft) so have some idea about how you may feel about being out there.
    Our thoughts are with you and a whole lot of energy being sent your way.
    Give your darling brave boat a pat from us.:-)
    All the very best.
    Your admirers Melva and Hilton from New Zealand.

  34. Hi Matt,




Comments are closed.