New Aspen Power Cat Knot Wafflen’ Finishes 10,000 Mile Tour of U.S. from Alaska to Annapolis
By Peter A. Janssen
They made it. The 10,000 Mile Tour is over. Knot Wafflen’, the 40-foot Aspen Power Catamaran that left Anacortes, Washington, last May, on a voyage around the United States, is home in Annapolis, Maryland, some 10,540 nm and 1,001 engine hours later. And its owner, David Jenkins, who calls himself a serial entrepreneur, is happy. “The boat was as advertised,” he told me. “It held up as I thought it would, based on my factory tour of its construction. Mileage, distances and all kinds of conditions – it met or exceeded expectations.”
On the last leg of the trip, Jenkins and Blake Eder, his brother-in-law and a professional delivery captain from North Carolina, brought the boat up from the Abacos, taking seven days to reach Annapolis. They ran offshore for much of the trip to avoid the bridges and no-wake zones in the ICW.
Jenkins says his favorite part of the entire journey “was completing the trip and the feeling of pulling into Annapolis with a big grin, knowing all the stories Sue Ellen and I could tell our five granddaughters.”
At the start, Jenkins, his wife, Sue Ellen, a nurse, and Eder left Anacortes and headed north, taking the boat all the way up to Glacier Bay, Alaska, before turning around and heading down the Pacific coast. Sue Ellen broke her arm on a hiking trail along the way. And the crew often changed, with Larry Graf, the founder and “chief adventurer” of Aspen Power Cats, and his son, Nick, the company’s sales manager, joining the venture, as did other friends and relatives.
The Jenkins spent some time in the Sea of Cortez in Mexico (see the picture above), where they dove and fished, before putting the boat on a trailer in Guaymas, where it was trucked to Galveston, Texas. After relaunching there, Knot Wafflen’ cruised down to Florida and over to the Bahamas, before heading home. (The boat’s name refers to Jenkins’ sale of Golden Malted, the largest waffle company in the U.S. a few years ago: “Obviously, I’m not waffling anymore,” he said.)
For most of the trip, Knot Wafflen’, a new C120 Aspen power cat, cruised at 17 knots, driven by a single 435-hp Volvo diesel. It has Graf’s patented twin proa hull, where the starboard hull, containing the engine and running gear, is 35 percent larger than the port hull, giving the boat less drag and greater fuel efficiency.
Now the Jenkins plan to enjoy Knot Wafflen’ in the Chesapeake for the remainder of the summer. They may put it in the Newport International Boat Show, starting Sept. 13, but it definitely will be displayed at the Annapolis power show, starting Oct. 11. For more: