May 2, 2004
Outside Magazine

The Trip-Finder, January 1999
Adventure-Sailing the Keys
Outfitter Price Accommodations
Hurricane Island Outward Bound School
800-341-1744, www.outward
$995-$1,695 boat accommodations

The Route: An eight- or 14-day Outward Bound voyage in a 30-foot, ketch-rigged pulling boat — your basic open whaling craft. You'll sail (and row) the aquarium-clear waters around the southern Everglades, Cape Sable, and the Marqesas Islands, sleeping aboard or camping on uninhabited islands.

When to go: November through April

Difficulty: Moderate

Travel advisory: Outward Bound's philosophy of self-reliance and teamwork is not for those accustomed to coddling. the longer trip includes the trademark two-day "solo," during which you'll camp alone on the beach with minimal food and shelter.

High/low points:

  • Shoal-draft sailing on one of the few nights when the Southern Cross is visible off the port beam, your keep gliding just 18 inches over moonlit sand.
  • Sleeping sardine-style atop four rock-hard sets of oars laid out lengthwise across the deck.

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