Lin and Larry Pardey

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Lin and Larry Pardey are sailors and writers, known for their small boat sailing. The Pardeys have sailed over 200,000 miles together, circumnavigating the world both east-about and west-about,[1] and have published numerous books on sailing.

Early life[edit]

Larry (born 1939 in Victoria, British Columbia)[2] and Lin was born 1944 in Detroit, Michigan).[2]

Sailing voyages[edit]

The Pardeys have sailed past all the great southern capes, including Cape Horn. Larry, assisted by Lin, built the two boats they used for two circumnavigations; both were under 30 feet and were designed by Lyle Hess. Neither boat had an engine.[3][4][5]

Larry also was one of the first people to sail across the Sahara desert in 1967. In an expedition organized by the French Colonel de Buchett and sponsored by National Geographic among others, he captained a North American team of three including Richard Arthur and Warren Zeibarth as they sailed landyachts from Colum Bechar in Algeria to Noachott in Mauritania, a distance of approximately 1700 miles.[6] For this each was awarded the Mauritanian Legion of Honor.[7] In 1974 he joined 67-year-old Leslie Dyball to take handicap honors in the bi-annual Round Britain and Ireland two-handed race on board the 30-foot S&S sloop Chough.[8]

Larry started his sailing career at age 17 in North Vancouver where he restored an El Toro dinghy and became a member of the West Vancouver Yacht Club. He quickly became proficient in racing and purchased then restored a 28-foot Tumlaren sloop, Annalisa. His skills lead to him being asked to instruct others in the art of racing and also to lead the junior sailing program. In 1964 he sold Annalisa and went to California in search of an affordable cruising boat. He instead signed as first mate on the 85-foot schooner, Double Eagle and sailed to Hawaii on a movie making charter. On his return he obtained a job skippering a 54-foot charter ketch and at the same time began building his first cruising boat, Seraffyn. It was only 5 months into this project that he met Lin Zatkin who soon joined him to finish building what became their first cruising boat. Together they eventually sailed more than 200,000 miles including both an east about and west about circumnavigation. To earn their way they delivered boats, restored boats and worked as riggers. Eventually Lin's writing skills began covering their cruising costs.

In 1985, during a voyage to New Zealand, the two purchased a distressed small boatyard and cottage on Kawau Island, 30 miles north of Auckland. This became their home base but did not stop them from voyaging onward.

After 49 years of marriage, and 47 years and more than 200,000 miles of voyaging together, Larry developed Parkinsons Disease and made his last ocean passage from California to New Zealand, where together they continued to cruise locally. In 2016, Larry's Parkinsonian dementia had advanced to the point where he could no longer live at home. Lin sold Taleisin to a young New Zealand couple in 2015. Lin continued sailing between visits to check on Larry. Over the past year she has logged another 9000 miles voyaging to Fiji, Vanuatu and along the coast of Australia and south of Tasmania. She currently is voyaging on board Sahula, a 40-foot Van de Stadt sloop owned by Australian, David Haigh.

With the financial assistance of Ken Thorall, lin has set up an observatory in honor of Larry, at Camp Bentzon, a children's camp on Kawau Island, New Zealand. Approximately 5000 children each year stay at the camp to learn outdoor skills and sailing. She continues to raise funds to support the observatory and also to provide opportunities for Sailors with Disabilities in three different communities.


Together they have written twelve books and created five instructional DVD programs. Parts of these programs have been aired on PBS television.

In January 2014, As Long as It's Fun, the Epic Voyages and Extraordinary Times of Lin and Larry Pardey, a biography written by Herb McCormick, was released by Paradise Cay Publications.[9]


The Cruising Club of America awarded their prestigious Far Horizon Award for 2009 to Lin and Larry in recognition of their combined voyaging on board many boats covering mileage totaling more than 200,000 for Larry and about 194,000 for Lin and doing so in a manner that is consistent with the goals of the CCA.[3] They were presented with the SSCA award from the Seven Seas Cruising Association in recognition of their contributions to the sport of sailing and the cruising community - only the 16th time in the club's 60-year history this award has been presented.

  • Mauritanian Legion of Honour, as Captain of first American team to sail across the Sahara Desert in a land yacht,1967.
  • Outstanding Sailor of the year – West Vancouver Yacht Club 1978
  • French Sailing Federation – Silver medal, Landyachting 1967
  • Cruising Sailors to contribute most to the sport of Sailing - voted by readers of Sail Magazine 1990.
  • International Oceanic Award - presented by Royal Institute of Navigation sponsored by Little Ship Club 1995 - in recognition of Larry's voyaging using traditional methods of navigation.
  • Larry won the International Oceanic Award from the Royal Institute of Navigation in 1996, and was presented this honour by the Princess Royal, Princess Anne in 1997.
  • Ocean Cruising Club Award - for contributions to Seamanship for small boat sailing. Presented to Lin Pardey 1996.
  • Geoff Pac Memorial Award - to both Lin and Larry for fostering and encouraging ocean cruising in small yachts 1998 and 2001
  • Cruising World Hall of Fame - 2000
  • Ocean Cruising Club Merit Award – To Lin and Larry for inspiring voyages including a west-about rounding of Cape Horn 2003
  • Seven Seas Cruising Club Service Award – To Lin and Larry for their lifetime voyaging achievements 2004
  • Cruising Club of America Far Horizons Award - To Lin and Larry for lifetime achievements and contributions to seamanship 2009[3]
  • Sail Magazines Top 40 Sailors who made a Difference–2010- Citation - As America's first couple of cruising, Lin and Larry have inspired countless sailors.
  • Yachting Monthly - 25 Cruising Heroes Only non-British sailors chosen. March 2012
  • Seven Seas Cruising Association - SSCA Award for contributions to the sailing community October 2015
  • BoatUS – Leaders and Legends 2016 – Named among 50 people who made a difference to the world of boating
  • Ocean Cruising Club 2019 - lifetime achievement award

Personal life[edit]

Lin and Larry reside on Kawau Island. Lin is one of the founding members and honorary secretary of the Kawau Island Boating Club and the elected representative for the island.[citation needed]



  • Cruising in Seraffyn ISBN 0-901281-04-2
  • Seraffyn's European Adventure ISBN 0-9646036-4-0
  • Seraffyn's Mediterranean Adventure ISBN 0-924486-15-5
  • Seraffyn's Oriental Adventure ISBN 0-9646036-3-2
  • Storm Tactics Handbook ISBN 978-1-929214-47-1
  • The Cost Conscious Cruiser ISBN 0-9646036-5-9
  • The Self Sufficient Sailor ISBN 0-9646036-7-5
  • The Capable Cruiser ISBN 0-9646036-2-4
  • The Care and Feeding of Sailing Crew ISBN 0-9646036-0-8
  • Details of Classic Boat Construction: The Hull ISBN 0-9646036-8-3
  • Bull Canyon, a Boatbuilder, a Writer and Other WildlifeISBN 978-1-929214-67-9 Willa Cather Literary Award, Creative non-fiction 2012 - finalist Indie Book Awards - General Non-Fiction, also Memoirs
  • Taleisin's Tales, cruising towards the Southern Cross (ISBN 978-1-929214-11-2

VHS tapes[edit]

  • Cruising Coral Seas
  • Cruising with Lin and Larry Pardey
  • Voyaging with Lin and Larry Pardey
  • The Care and Feeding of Sailing Crew
  • Storm Tactics


  • Cruising Has No Limits ISBN 1-929214-17-0
  • Get Ready to Cruise
  • Get Ready to Cross Oceans
  • Storm Tactics
  • Cost control While You Cruise

Further reading[edit]

  • Down, Susan (18 March 1995). "Homes on the Sea". Times-Colonist (Victoria). p. 1.
  • Lanthier, Nancy (19 August 2004). "Extra: Lin and Larry Pardey". Vancouver Sun. p. C18.
  • As Long as It's Fun, the extraordinary voyages and adventures of Lin and Larry Pardey publisher=Paradise Cay Publications]] date=January 2014


  1. ^ Duncan Wells (12 March 2015). Stress-free Sailing: Single and Short-handed Techniques. Bloomsbury Publishing. pp. 122–. ISBN 978-1-4729-1974-8.
  2. ^ a b "Lin & Larry - The Cold Hard Facts (bio)". Archived from the original on 22 August 2007. Retrieved 5 September 2007.
  3. ^ a b c Cruising Club of America (21 January 2010). "2009 Far Horizons Award to Lin and Larry Pardey". Retrieved 15 December 2018.
  4. ^ Herb McCormick (5 March 2014). As Long as It's Fun: The Epic Voyages and Extraordinary Times of Lin and Larry Pardey. Paradise Cay Publications. pp. 50–. ISBN 978-1-929214-99-0.
  5. ^ John Vigor (1 August 2005). Things I Wish I'd Known Before I Started Sailing. Sheridan House. pp. 55–. ISBN 978-1-57409-338-4.
  6. ^ "What is Landyachting?". York Landyacht Club. Retrieved 16 December 2018.
  7. ^ "Larry Pardey". Goodreads. Retrieved 16 December 2018.
  8. ^ "RBI History - the third RBI". The Royal Western Yacht Club of England. Retrieved 16 December 2018.
  9. ^ McCormack, Herb (15 April 2014). As Long as it's Fun : The Epic Voyages and Extraordinary Times of Lin and Larry Pardey. Paradise Cay Publications. p. 280. ISBN 9781929214983. Retrieved 16 December 2018.
  • Adlard Coles Heavy Weather Sailing, 6th Edition edited by Peter Bruce
  • BoatUS, April/May 2016 - Leaders and Legends who moved the needle in the sport of boating

External links[edit]