Florida Skiff Challenge - A Serious Endurance Event




“My advice to anyone coming for the first time is, don’t worry about me, don’t worry about anyone else. Put your team together, and finish it.”

Podcast Synopsis

I sat down with Heath Daughtry of Yellowfin Yatchs, Alycia Downs of Captains For Cleanwater and Chase Daniel from Yellowfin Yatchs to talk about the Florida Skiff Challenge. This event is not joke - you get in a Skiff (18ft or less boat) with a 70 horse-power or less motor. You take that boat around Key West and end in Cabin Bluff, GA. This event is 1,600 miles and you go for 48 hours nonstop. You don’t sleep.

The people who invented this craziness were Heath Daughtry and Chase Daniel of Yellowfin. They started out just doing it by themselves, and this will be the 5th year into it and there are quite a few teams involved now. It has become a real event and is super cool. But what makes it even cooler is that they have partnered up the race with Captains For Clean Water.

In the beginning Heath and Chase started out trying to test the electronics, motor, boat and themselves in an endurance challenge. They started on the Florida/Alabama state line and the plan was to go through apalachacola go down gulf coast, through Lake okachobie and end in sarasota. The goal was to do it in 24 hours. Once they set out they didn’t account for nature intervening, fatigue coming into effect and difficulty communicating with the land team. They ended up in Biscane Bay and pulled in to Bears Cut. At about 3/4 of the way through their journey it had already been 48 hours.

Chase and Heath both agreed that the trip was worth doing in March when the weather was unpredictable. It could be good but it was a high chance of bad weather as well. The hope was that they would be tested. Of course now with multiple teams they want to compete and win, but it is really a race against yourself and a challenge to just finish.

For each of the teams competing they raise money now for Captains For Clean Water to help the Everglades and there are incentives for them to raise the most money. There will be time shaved off of the team that raises the most money to help conserve the Everglades National Park. Support your team:

Team Key West

Team Hell’s Bay

Team Yellowfin

Team Sea Pro

You can follow Heath Daughtry on Instagram @onlyinayellowfin

You can follow Chase Daniel on Instagram

You can follow Alycia Downs on Instagram @tideandtale

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See you on the water,

-Tom Rowland