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Individuals of all economic strata are shedding their jobs, hometowns, and lifestyle to embrace a wider experience and a more meaningful existence.

Nike Steiger

Nike SteigerNike (Nee-kuh) Steiger, born in 1982 in Hamburg, Germany is a an adventurer and sailor who purchased a used 37-foot twin keeled aluminum Reinke Super 10 and began the process of refitting it - by herself in a foreign country.

Nike is a rare woman who tired of her 9-5 existence and decided to sail around the world on a boat by herself rather than spend her time in an office working at a job.

She had bought the boat sight unseen after a friend had checked it out and advised her it could be made seaworthy with some work. After having looked tirelessly in Europe for a suitable boat, Nike had found this Reinke Super 10 in Panama where it had been sitting for 5 years.

It was for sale at about a third of what comparable boats were selling for in Europe, so she bought the boat and got on a flight for Panama. What she found there was a boat in need of serious attention, but this did not cause her to regret her decision - she just rolled up her sleeves and began the work even though she had no experience in refitting a boat.

Nike had been working in a marketing job in Hamburg, but was not all that thrilled at the prospect of spending her life in an office.

So she embarked on a new path in which she decided she needed to seriously start saving her money. When she inherited some money from her Granmother she was ready to embark on this adventure of a lifetime.

Between her savings and the small inheritance she had enough to buy the boat and start the refit, but by no means enough to say her finances were completely in order.

She must always keep her eyes open as regards working on her journey and has already met many travelers who have shown her that it is quite possible.

Nike SteigerSo the initial part of her glamorous adventure had this beautiful German woman, more often than not, covered in grease and dirt repairing her boat in a foreign country all by herself. This definitely qualifies her as quite an amazing women to begin with.

Her attention was first directed at those things that needed to be done to make the boat safe. She felt that other parts of the refit could be done later when the boat is seaworthy.

Her first season in the Caribbean she wanted to get to know the boat and see how well she could single-hand in open water before heading out onto the Pacific Ocean. Her initial itinerary is to return to Germany by way of French Polynesia, Hawaii, Alaska, and the Inside Passage - a truck and trailer through Canada to the Great Lakes, then across the Atlantic to Europe and home to Germany.

Nike had a small amount of sailing experience before taking her plan from a thought into action. She had taken some classes and recieved certificates, she went on holiday sails with her family while growing up, and went on some learning sail trips with friends.

Nike had started sailing as a teenager and describes 'yelling sailing commands to myself' while tacking through Glucksberg Harbor in her boat as a youngster.

As she grew up, she was able to crew with her father as his 'proud first mate' and complete some sailing licenses so that she could do some coastal cruising.

Nike SteigerBy the time she went to Panama to buy her boat, she had about 2,000 nautical miles under her belt, but never any true singlehanding experience. When asked what made her set out on this solo adventure, Nike said:

"For some reason, I have never questioned the fact of departing on this journey by myself. Ever since the moment that this dream was born inside of me, I have seen a boat and me out on the ocean. I cannot really say why, it was just the image that was coming up in front of my inner eye when I dreamt about it".

The name of her boat when she bought it was Vela Bianca but Nike changed it to Karl. Why Karl...?

"For some reason, I wanted my boat to be a male companion. And I was looking for a short and easy name. Karl has always been a name that I have liked and when I looked up the meaning of it, I found out, that it means 'husband' but that it also means 'the free one'. That was the moment I knew that it would be the perfect name for my boat."

Nike started a well-produced video diary early on in her adventure and posts short updates each week on her YouTube channel. It started out mostly showing the process of cleaning up and refitting her boat Karl and progressed to cruising the western Caribbean.

She recently transited the Panama Canal and will continue into the South Pacific towards the Galapegos and beyond.

Nike SteigerThe videos are fairly short - about 4 minutes in length, but the quality of Nike's videos are excellent and the subjects captivating.

Check out her Patreon page for ways you can both contribute to her project and even participate in her videos. www.patreon.com/whitespotpirates

If all this wasn't enough - why mount another project on top of that and film and document the whole experience?

"One of the main reasons, this dream was born inside me, kept growing and finally was put into reality were other people, that had inspired me with their stories. Somehow, seeing other people realize a project like this gave me the confidence that I had a chance to succeed as well."

"The idea of UNTIE THE LINES is to give some of the inspiration that I had received from the actions of others back to the people out there. To bring them one step closer to putting their own dreams into reality.

To show that even if it is sometimes hard, it is worth to fight for your White Spots with all your heart!"

"After almost a year of refitting my sailboat Karl, I am finally living my dream to sail the world. I am documenting and sharing the ups and downs of my adventure in the hope to inspire people to put their own dreams into reality.

Nike Steiger"If you enjoy the video documentary Untie The Lines and decide to support it, your money will help to pay for internet access along the way, for better camera equipment and for a professional editing software."

"And of course, being able to earn some money along the journey helps Karl and me to keep on travelling and creating more videos for you!"

"Sometimes you have to try. And learn it the hard way," she says, after enduring a day of frustration that would leave many older, seasoned and financially well-off sailors reeling.

Getting tired and discouraged is par for the course when you're learning the hard way and Nike doesn't hide it.

So, why did she pursue this crazy dream...?

She said that somehow the idea had fascinated her ever since she was a young girl - having her own sailboat and traveling around the world in it.

The mixture of travel, a life in harmony with nature, reducing possessions down to the necessary and the challenge of constantly having to work on new areas felt like it was just the thing for her. All that and it somehow smelled of great freedom to her.

Nike Steiger"I believe that most people are concerned about breaking out of the 'normal' and moving into such an unsafe position. It also always depends on what you imagine for the future in general. But if you are a bit flexible in your way of life, and can also be satisfied with a little less money - then it is not so difficult to do such a project."

"For me, it was extremely helpful to look at exactly the hurdles that keep me from realizing my dream. And then to evaluate quite subjectively whether these obstacles actually have such a great relevance to me or whether they exist mainly due to external expectations. I would not be sitting on my own sailboat in Panama if I had not done that a few years ago."

"It's my goal to be a source of inspiration to all of the people who dream big and dare to go one step further: to turn their dreams into reality."

Update:

Since the above feature of Nike was uploaded there have been many big challenges that she overcame to prepare the boat and make it perfectly seaworthy for open water sailing on the ocean.

A signifigant amount of time and money had been put into Karl to bring the boat up to safe and reasonable standards for an ocean-going vessel being single-handed by a non-veteran sailor on the Pacific Ocean.

Not only large sums of money had been put towards the project, but long and frustrating hours of labor by not only Nike, but by friends and new found acquantenances. The expense and work of replacing the engine had been overcome and yet to feel safe and confident cruising long distances there was still yet one more hurdle to cross.

Nike Steiger There were leaks in the hull that would require taking Karl out of the water onto the hard to weld new steel plates onto and inside the hull. It had to be done to have any level of confidence in the structural integrity of the boat.

Finally the the task was completed and in attending to final smaller little chores that needed to be done before departing Nike found water inside the hull and upon further investigation she determined that some of the welds had failed and that the hull was still leaking.

It was like the straw that broke the camels back. Nike had no more energy remaining to go through it all again. So, she hid from the world for a good week and just felt sorry for herself and pondered whether it might be time to say goodbye to Karl.

Fortunately now she has had some time to sort through her thoughts and worries, talk to various experts in search of different solutions and do some financial calculations. And in the same nature that brought her to this point, Nike made her decision.

Karl will be back in the water one more time. Just one more time will she put all her time, energy and money into Karl and try as best as she can to see the dream survive.

If you have not subscribed to Nike's YouTube channel then please do so in order to recieve email notifications when she uploads new videos. Click on the 'Subscribe' button to subscrible and then also click on the little bell icon next to it to be notified of new video uploads.

www.whitespotpirates.com

Youtube Video Channel

Nike SteigerYou can help Nike by becoming a Patreon to help defray the cost of her video production. As a patreon there are special 'Patreon Only' benefits for becoming a patreon which are detailed on the following website. All the information is available for those desiring to become patreons.

www.patreon.com/whitespotpirates


Now you'd think life would give this determined woman a bit of a break after all the difficulties she endured - and it did just that - a broken ankle. But Nike is not to be thwarted and has been using her recovery time to initiate a project with some other female sailors.

What they are planning is to work hand in hand with local communities in remote coastal areas to create systems for domestic plastic waste management and reducing plastic pollution in adjacent oceans and shorelines. They will be providing small-scale recycling machines and the necessary know-how to turn plastic waste into something useful.

In the long term, they want to support the local communities in creating circular economies in seaside areas with basic infrastructure for turning plastic waste into a useful resource and create new employment opportunities.

Nike Steiger
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