The Crew of SVZV

Photo by incredibly talented friend @vcortlandphoto (instagram)

I began this blog back in August of 2020, so I figured it may be time to reintroduce ourselves- We are the crew of the Sailing Vessel Zayna Vnnette!

Captain: This is our incredible, funny, wise, and handsome captain – Austin. Austin was born in WA and comes from a long line of sailors. He made it a goal to sail around the world by the time he hit 30 and leads the crew with his passion and drive. We are all lucky to be part of the team making this incredible dream a reality.

Fun fact: To work towards his goals and hone his skills, Austin got his captain’s license early and began captaining charter boats around Maui. At 24 he became the youngest Captain at the second windiest harbor in the world! (Maalaea Harbor)

First Mate: This is me! Also known as Chelsea/The Maiden Sailor. As you might have figured out by now, I started this journey knowing absolutely nothing about boats or sailing. The first boat I ever stepped foot on is the boat we currently live on (feel free to check out the whole story here). I’ve always dreamed of traveling the world and after meeting Austin I figured out how I was going to do it. If you had told me 5 years ago I would be where I am today – I would’ve said you were nuts. I started this blog to inspire people to go out and do the crazy things they never dreamed possible for themselves. If I can do it – anyone can.

Crew: Tuna! Tuna is the youngest member of the crew, turning 2 this September. She was brought onboard at 2 months old and has been sailing with SVZV ever since. As an official boat cat, she has taken on many important responsibilities. She has tested every potential napping spot on board, monitors all crew projects, and has pointed out (but never actually killed) every creepy crawler on the boat. Her favorite activities include fishing, watching boats go by, and lounging in the sunshine.

Fun Fact: Tuna has her own Instagram!

A Request For Anyone Reading

Is there anything you are curious to know about my life aboard SVZV that I haven’t covered in my blog? Anything you would like to read more/less of? Or any questions, comments, concerns, etc? Please let me know! I would love to know what interests people the most. Thank you!

Deadliest Catch

We woke up at 3:30am on a warm summer morning. We struggled to get out of bed, get dressed, and head out the door. Although I was excited to go for a morning sail and fish for some Ono, I also strongly believed the fish still would have been there if we left at 6am instead. But you know what they say.. the early bird catches the worm, or the 40lb fish in this case.

It was still dark out when we pulled up to our friends boat. He had Tupac blasting, champagne chilling in the fridge, and was ready to get this show on the road. I, on the other hand, was proud I even remembered to zip my pants. We got everything ready to go, threw the mooring line off of the boat, and headed south towards Kaho’olawe.

The crisp morning air blew against my face, filling me with energy and excitement as the bow of the boat broke through the waves taking us towards our destination. I took over the helm allowing Austin and our friend T to set up the poles. We had two poles with massive reels out, each had a large rapala on the end that dove down ~30ft when casted into the water. So we threw out our lines, tightened the drag on our poles, and waited.

And waited.

And waited some more.

By this time I’m a few mimosas deep and enjoying the gorgeous views surrounding me. This was the first time anyone trusted me at the helm unsupervised. Which, in retrospect, after the mimosas, might have been questionable.. but boy was I having fun. Then I heard it.


The line took off, moving with more speed and strength then I had ever seen. I couldn’t even form words. All I could muster was “f-f-fish!”

I have never seen Austin move so fast. With the speed and determination of a NBA player going after the ball during a championship game, he sprinted to the pole holder attached to the starboard side of the boat. Moving quickly and seemingly without effort he grabbed the pole and inserted it into a fishing belt. Then he started to reel.

He reeled and he reeled and he kept reeling it in.

My arms were sore just watching this happen.

“I see it!”

“What is it!?”

“Bring it up man!”

“Almost got it!”


Below my feet, flopping around on deck was the biggest fish I had ever witnessed anyone catch in real life. We caught an Ono!!

After cleaning him up and filleting him, we took half of him home and had enough meat for the two of us to eat for a week. I love fishing, but after that experience I’m determined to keep catching big fish. Next time maybe I’ll even reel it in myself.



It’s hard to believe that two years ago I had never set foot on a sailboat. I had only been on three ferry’s in my life and didn’t know the first thing about sailing. I couldn’t have identified port from starboard or bow from stern.

Fast forward to today; my boyfriend, Austin, and I dove down and lifted a 4000lb mooring block off of the ocean floor using 5000lb of lift bags. In 6 months I have learned and grown more than I could have imagined. I have gained so many stories, experiences, and memories and we haven’t even started sailing.

I’ve had the desire to start a blog for a long time. For years I tried out tons of different hobbies and activities, just to see if I enjoyed one enough to do it consistently and write about it. I’ve always felt that there is nothing interesting about me and I would have to find something people would be interested in. When we attached our boat to the mooring for the first time it hit me: I already have it.