Faraway – my first boat

Faraway at Svartisen

I lived aboard Faraway for 8 months sailing from Ireland to the Norwegian Arctic then south to Portugal where I joined the She of Feock.  I rejoined in the Canaries and sailed to the Cape Verdes then transatlantic to Brazil.

So what is the boat like?

She’s a scaled down Colin Archer. William Garden Seal design featured in his book “Sailing Designs” by William Garden and built by John. Originally designed as a Gaff rigged cutter ketch with a flush deck, but modified to a Marconi rig and patterned after the North Sea Life Saving boats by the designer/naval architect Colin Archer.

The Seal is a double ender, larger than the bullfrog.

The boat is cluttered inside…

Chaos at the chart table

…and outside

faraway the most cluttered boat in the world

The boat is 38’ on deck, LOA 46’.  Sail area is about 800 square feet.

sailing wing on wingCurrent cruising displacement is about 42,000 lbs, My guess is that’s extremely conservative, I mean what about the onions and the raisins? Design displacement is 32,000 lbs. She is constructed in traditional carvel planked style with select white oak timbers, yellow cedar planking with silicon bronze fastenings throughout.  Steam bent oak frames, teak decks, deck house and dog house. Honduras mahogany covering boards.  Sitka spruce masts and spars.

Yellow cedar panelling with mahogany trim in the cabin


John started building it in 1964 when he was attending school, earning a living and skiing.  He finished it in June 1970 and left from San Diego, California, USA for the South Pacific (New Zealand) the very day it was complete.  This was the first day the sails had been raised, and he was leaving on his world trip!  Talk about throwing caution to the wind – Even Slocum took his boat on a trial sail!

norway sunset



  1. John – the same “Faraway” who helped rescue “Dalkiri” mid-Atlantic May 2009?
    We heard KL1ZM pass by South Africa 2015. If this is you please get in contact with Heather ZS6YE and Jess – we never had a chance to say THANK YOU.

    • Meraid Griffin

      Hi Heather and Jess,
      I believe this is the very same yacht. John mentioned this event to me, so I’ll pass your email onto him.

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