The BDX Story


drEarly on in my life, long before I began sailing and competitive racing, I learned something about learning… and that was… we learn best what we learn from each other. I see this lesson reinforced all the time, especially in the way seasoned sailors freely share their experience with more novice sailors. It is my feeling that one of our primary human responsibilities is to share with others (and especially with younger people) some of the knowledge and pieces of wisdom that we have been lucky enough to accrue in our lives.

If we fail to seize such opportunities, if we don’t each of us seek out ways to share what we know with others, then we leave that critical task of instruction and mentorship to far more indifferent and institutional forces – which while they may be mostly well-intentioned, cannot possibly recreate the sort of intimate connection or make the same kind of lasting impression on quick and still-forming minds that learning directly from others can provide.

Matt Scharl and Dave Rearick field some tough questions in NYC Harbor.


In a blog post I was asked to write after the 2013 Atlantic Cup Race for our friends at 11th Hour Racing, I posed this question What if we knew then what we know now? If that were in fact the case, then how exactly might that change what we each do today? After all, we were all once inexperienced and in search of those fundamental lessons that would turn us one day into who we are now!

BD_232My own course has taken me from sailing Sunfish on Lake Michigan to sailing our beautiful  Class 40 Bodacious Dream on a solo circumnavigation adventure across all of Earth’s great oceans.

As sailors, we spend a lot of time on the water and so live in an intimate relationship with this immense natural force. We are very lucky to be so up close with such natural power. With water covering over 70% of the earth’s surface, with the water inside of us at very nearly that same percentage and with 50% of the air we breathe coming from the ocean, how can it be that the future health of life on earth is not somehow intrinsically tied to the health of the oceans? Why is it that in spite of the great wealth of new tools and technologies now at our disposal, we still tend to “flounder” rather than “swim” toward intelligent and vibrant solutions. For myself, I think this is partly due to just how removed most people have become from any actual “experience” of nature and the ocean. For too many of us, once we leave the shoreline, the ocean becomes invisible.

So it is, that one of the primary goals of our “Bodacious Dream Expeditions” (BDX) is to go out into “deep water” and to put some of that whizzy new Internet technology to work, to help bring a more direct and visceral experience of the ocean (and of the craft of sailing) back into people’s lives.

Bodacious Dream ExpeditionsThat is the challenge then that BDX was created to address – to introduce young and curious minds (of all ages) to the wonders of the ocean, but also to the many demands required of skillful sailing and sailcraft. BDX seeks to advance sea-based learning and to share that experience of being and sailing on the ocean with whomever chooses to join our “bodacious” online crew.

Even more than sailing, what makes “bodacious dreaming” so essential to a life more fully lived, are those unexpected life-changing moments that suddenly arrive when one experiences, for a brief time, being in an unbroken harmony with the vastness of nature, caught between the sea and sky.

In 1670, an English poet, teacher and occasional sailor named Thomas Traherne wrote the following words… “You never know the world aright, till the sea itself floweth in your veins, till you are clothed with the heavens and crowned with the stars.”

Now THAT is a deep experience he is describing … and while it may be difficult to share that level of insight in words and pictures over an Internet connection, it is not entirely impossible either… not if care is taken to keep the virtual in service to the virtuous “experience” that attends to shared learning.

One great challenge for those of us who would mentor in new and non-traditional ways, comes in accepting that all progress is incremental, and in keeping things in proper perspective – which requires that we first of all, face our own limitations, and see ourselves not as “authorities” or “experts” but as learners too … who are simply doing our best to navigate our course – and along the way to share our experience with others.

Bodacious Dream Expeditions


Here is some of what we have done since March of 2013 in the service of teaching ourselves (and each other) to conduct Bodacious Dream Expeditions.

Our Bodacious Dream Expeditions Trailer!

1)  Our FIRST EXPEDITION at the end of March of 2013, was along the coast of the BAJA PENINSULA. Our vessel for that undertaking was Bodacious Racing’s Transpac entry, the beautiful Bodacious IV with a crew of five!

For the Baja Expedition, with the help of our onshore team, we created study materials; an Overview of the Baja Peninsula as well as six Explorer Study Guides specific to the subjects of Math, History, Wild Life, Environment, Geography as well as a Glossary of Terms.

Explorer Guide
An example of what one of our Explorer Guides look like … 

After we published these materials, we shared with our various friends and followers, how to use them. We encouraged people (and teachers) to print out the materials and to follow our progress alongside and mentoring  the younger people in their lives. We also did some pre-expedition videos, such as this one.

Dave visits Captain Ann at the SeaBreeze Limited nautical chart store in San Diego.

Over the course of 10 days, from Cabo San Lucas and along the way to San Diego, we made many interesting discoveries and generated many Expedition updates, each accompanied by cool photos and videos. We also received and responded to questions from the public … and our crew of five kept coming up with new things to explore and share.

  • Dave’s RECAP of the Baja Expedition … is HERE! 

2)  Our SECOND EXPEDITION back aboard Bodacious Dream, took place concurrently to the ATLANTIC CUP RACE in May 2013. Here again we prepared study materials, an Overview and Explorer Guides, the time and effort it took to actually sail (and win) the race left less time than we would have liked to generate deeper learning updates. Still, we did what we could – and we SURE were happy to have won the race!

  • Dave’s RECAP of the Atlantic Cup Coast Expedition … is HERE

Bodacious Dream NYCBodacious Dream in NYC harbor …

3)  Our THIRD EXPEDITION was in July 2013 back aboard Bodacious IV, and was similarly designed to coincide with the TRANSPAC Race from California to Hawaii

  • Dave’s RECAP of the Transpac Expedition … is HERE


4)  Our FOURTH (and just completed) EXPEDITION took us around the world’s oceans I  worked to make real a lifelong dream to SOLO CIRCUMNAVIGATE THE GLOBE!  It was an adventure to be sure… overflowing many dozens of updates and stories, a great series of science notes as well as all the guides and tools to learning and discovery that were also such a big part of the expedition.

  • Dave’s RECAPS of all 4 Legs of the Circumnavigation start HERE!

As we move forward to the next stage of Bodacious Dream Expeditions, we remain balanced somewhere between the starry heavens and the deep blue sea … open to hearing from any person or organization that might have ideas, talent or resources to help our expeditions reach more people so that we might generate not just heaps of fun and adventure (though we WILL do that)… but also some good measure of unique broad-based learning opportunities and meaningful life-altering discoveries!

Thank you, one and all!

- Dave Rearick & the Bodacious Dream Expeditionary Force

= Bodacious Dream (BD) = [Racing]
- BD Website:
- BD Facebook Page:
- BD YouTube Channel:
= Bodacious Dream Expeditions (BDX) = [Learning & Discovery]
- BDX Website:
- BDX Facebook Page:
- BDX YouTube Channel:
= Twitter @BodaciousDream (BD+BDX):