resh water is one of the few things the human body cannot do without. A person can survive several weeks without food but only three or four days without water. This is why the logs of explorers such as James Cook are filled with references to anchorages where rivers were found, descriptions of long days working to replenish the ship’s water supply and worried remarks about the number of casks found sour in the hold midocean. The tales of voyaging yachts, such as John Guzzwell’s Trekka and Frank Wightman’s Wylo, also devote paragraphs to rain catchment and refilling the tanks in port. This was our situation when my husband, Seth, and I set off as cash-strapped college kids to circumnavigate aboard a vessel much more akin to the home-built Wylo than anything on the market today. We tried catching rain, we took seawater showers and we spent long days in remote anchorages hauling buckets of fresh water from shore to our boat.