Photo credit: Dave Lesser

Alex Zimmerman rowing Fire-Drake

About Alex Zimmerman

Alex Zimmerman is a writer, adventurer, and amateur boatbuilder, sideline occupations which paralleled his mainstream career as technologist, executive, environmentalist and consultant in the green buildings industry before his retirement. He can now afford to pursue his former sideline occupations full time.

Alex got a basic grounding in seamanship, navigation and sailing as a junior engineer officer in the Canadian Navy and continued it by teaching in the Canadian Power Squadron after he left the Navy. He did a lot of big-boat sailing in other people’s boats before downsizing to kayaks and small open boats. He built all his own boats; his three kayaks and both of his sail and oar boats. He used his decades of experience to also design his latest sail and oar boat, the eighteen foot lug yawl that he named Fire-Drake.

Alex still sails with other people when he can and has made a couple of offshore passages. He also has a connection with the mountains and occasionally shoulders his backpack to head up into the mountains of Vancouver Island, BC’s mainland coast or the Canadian Rockies

Alex has long been fascinated by the marvelous coast of British Columbia, its natural wonders, its people and its history. Alex has put several thousand self-propelled miles under the keels of his various boats over the past two and half decades exploring that coast. The culmination of that exploration was the successful and safe solo completion of British Columbia’s Inside Passage in 2017 in his boat, Fire-Drake. The story of that voyage forms the last two chapters of his book, Becoming Coastal.

Alex lives in Victoria, British Columbia with his wife, and, between injuries, maintains the fiction that he is a still a runner and an athlete. He says he can stop boatbuilding any time he wants to.