The Original Cannabis Entrepreneurs
Learn about America’s First Colombian Connection
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Meet the Cannabis Crew
Meet Skip Steele
Surfer, Waterman, passionate “head”. Skip Steele brought together Watermen and Air Force Officers for the first large scale cannabis smuggling operations of the 1970’s.
Meet Raymond Grady Stansel
Captain Raymond Grady Stansel was an original player in the earliest days of Caribbean Cannabis Smuggling. With a career that was refined in the straits, bays and open ocean of the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean beyond, Capt. Ray defined the epitome of the peaceful gentlemen smuggler in the mid-60’s and early 70’s.
1970’s Marijuana Smuggling Overview
This is the story of Skip Steele and the Cannabis Crew, a team of early pioneers of the Caribbean cannabis smuggling trade in the late 1960’s and throughout the decade of the 1970’s. Skip and his partners were an unlikely and intrepid group of Air Force Academy Officers, who, having been disillusioned by the atrocities of the Vietnam War, joined forces with a group of surfers and watermen to develop some of the first large scale smuggling operations of high quality Colombian Marijuana to the fervent and growing base of “heads” throughout the United States of America in cities which included Atlanta, Chicago, Detroit, up and Down the East Coast, and throughout major cities in California and Washington. Motivated by their common love for adventure and the gift that is cannabis, together this crew of saltwater hardened smugglers imported enormous amounts of marijuana from South America, Africa and Thailand, eventually flooding the streets of a changing societal landscape in America in the late 60’s and early 1970’s.
From humble beginnings, these group of unlikely patriots forged a lifestyle of incredible wealth, international exploits, intrigue and adventure beyond which any of them could have ever imagined.
At Ganja Outpost, we are thrilled that the original members of the “Cannabis Crew” are kind enough to share anecdotes from a life lived at the front lines of the failed and useless “War on Drugs” that has plagued American society since the 60’s. The original “Cannabis Crew“, including Skip Steele, shared an unwritten creed by which they conducted every aspect of their marijuana smuggling enterprises. This code revolved around respect for the herb, for each other, and the risky business they were undertaking.
Explore our 1970’s Marijuana Smuggling Tales
Start at the beginning…
Dive into the Cannabis Crew with our introduction to Skip’s stories. Get a taste of what it was like when a large gig went off without a hitch…
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Been keeping up with Skip’s stories? Explore the latest stories from a life lived at the front lines of the failed War on Cannabis.
After assisting RJ with the offloading of the Jamaican Ganja at the bridge, Skip Steele decided it was time to lay low. In this episode, Skip recounts how his next foray into “the business” helped to jumpstart his eventual path to revolutionizing international cannabis smuggling in the early 1970’s. A Taste of Success I was […]
Skip Steele and a team of former Air Force Officers made up the first crew to bring large scale Colombian cannabis into the United States. To do so, they connected with a man who would eventually fake his own death and become one of America’s most successful fugitives, Raymond Grady Stansel. At the time, the […]
Skip Steele’s first real interaction with smuggling cannabis gigs was during an offload from his buddies share in an early Jamaica gig. In this episode, Skip recounts the surprise he received during his first offload, and how it helped him make quick inroads to the entire marijuana smuggling industry of the early 1970’s… The education […]
In this episode Skip Steele and Brother Will Knox stumble into their first international smuggling operation trying to get Skip’s classic motorcycle back to the states… The Thrill of the Open Road There is a freedom that comes from riding a motorcycle, that can’t be found anywhere else. It’s not just transportation, the journey becomes the […]
In this episode, Skip graduates from High School and heads to Europe to wander the continent, shaping his wanderlust and free-spirit on the continent from Jimi Hendrix’s final large-scale performance at the Isle of Wight to back-packing alone into Morocco. A Stellar Graduation Gift Graduation from High school was an exciting event, but not what […]
Previously, Skip discovered that his close friend’s brother was running hash back to the US from Morocco. Our story continues as Skip learns about the exploits of the Hash Brothers in Morocco. Paranoia Strikes Deep I was freaked out. My mind started to race, as I realized what was happening in the small house with the […]
In the late sixities Hash was a seldom-seen delicacy for young heads. In this story, Skip outlines his initial run-in with pure Moroccan hash and the brave young men who were among the first to undertake the dangerous journey to Morocco’s Atlas mountains and its supply of bricks of hashish. Who Has Some Hash? Almost […]
Like all of us, even the biggest original smugglers had to have a first time experience with the Green Angel. Learn about Skip’s first experience with the blessing of marijuana and how it inspired him to get involved intimately with this wonderful plant. A New Perspective It has always amazed me how time seems to […]
As the “younger brother”, Skip makes connections as a child that will help to revolutionize early weed smuggling & importation in the 1970’s. Learn about the first introduction that Skip has to one particular character that will help to shape Skip’s path down the line immensely… Becoming a Beach Boy As I grew older, games […]
In this episode, Skip meets Will Knox, a critical player in what will become Skip’s Cannabis Crew in the 70’s & 80’s, for the first time. All American Boys A summer in the southern latitudes is a unique experience. For many people who have never lived through the entire doldrums of the mid-summer’s months in […]
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A Cannabis Smuggler’s Code of Honor
During the height of their career, the Cannabis Crew stuck to a strict code of respect with one another and on every gig.
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Original Cannabis Entrepreneurs
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Who was the Cannabis Crew? Discover some of what made Skip Steele’s team the original cannabis entrepreneurs…
A PASSION FOR CANNABIS
Medicine, Food, Clothing, Recreation, Stress Relief. Sound familiar? The powerful positive aspects of the Cannabis plant are becoming more and more evident to societies around the world. Skip and the Cannabis Crew have always believed that Cannabis has the power to heal our fragmented communities, often reminding partners and friends that the worst part about marijuana has been the laws persecuting its research and use.
FIRST CREW WITH LARGE SCALE IMPORTATION OUT OF COLOMBIA
Prior to Skip & the Cannabis Crew, the majority of herb found on the shores of the United States in late 60’s & early 70’s was primarily Mexican dirt weed or lower quantities of higher quality Jamaican ganja. After initial “test” loads, Skip’s Crew started hauling multiple 100,000 pound loads from the jungles of the North Colombian coast back to Florida & the Eastern Seaboard as early as 1972, effectively flooding the consciousness of America with high quality Colombian Gold throughout the 1970’s.
DUES PAID IN FULL
The United States’ failed War on Drugs has plagued American society for over four decades. The Cannabis Crew fought on the frontline of this massive failed campaign throughout some of the most challenging periods in marijuana history and equality. Founding members of the crew now share their stories from a unique perspective. In time the Crew has lost brothers to the game; the Outpost is dedicated to their memory.
A COMMITMENT TO PEACE
The Cannabis Crew were a group of hippie-surfer-watermen who joined forces with disillusioned Air Force Academy Officers freshly back in the States from the failed Vietnam War. Both groups were staunchly anti-war and committed to creating a lasting positive change for a more peaceful, conscious society. Cannabis was the engine for peace; a powerful gift from Mother Earth that could help to awaken the spiritual psyche of America in the 1970’s.
WEED FROM FOUR COUNTRIES
By the time the boys were finished with their smuggling careers in the early 80’s, their international exploits in Cannabis importation had expanded to four countries. From humble beginnings with Jamaican Ganja and beautiful Colombian Gold to Moroccan Hashish and large loads of Thai Stick, the Crew made efforts to introduce new and exciting first generation strains to a rabid US headbase until the mid-1980’s.
Ganja Outpost is a hardcore marijuana brand for true reefer aficionados. You won’t find clean-cut businessmen in suits clamoring to get their piece of the exploding cannabis industry here. You will find original ganja entrepreneurs who are passionate about sharing the history, love and gift of cannabis with a world that is aching for an alternative to maddening corporate insanity.
” We considerED it Gentlemen’s Sport…”
– ERIC SPATZ, 1986
In the early 1970’s, when other future pot smugglers were selling lids of their pot, the Cannabis Crew were moving 100,000 pound loads of the finest reefer in massive 95′ shrimp boats throughout the Caribbean and Eastern Seaboard. We hope that you enjoy these anecdotes of what it was like to be one of the original cannabis smugglers of the early 1970’s. All of these stories are presented exclusively for our visitors here at Ganja Outpost. They illustrate a story of real marijuana heroes who believed that cannabis could truly create lasting positive change for a society that is in need of a better vision for a united future. Skip and the “Cannabis Crew” were the originals in Marijuana Smuggling and have the scars from the “War against Drugs” to prove it. There are a few brothers from the original partners still with us. Some were lost in the game, while others have been lost to Father Time. This website is a dedication to the ones that have gone before us.
We hope you enjoy the continuing episodes of Skip Steele & the Cannabis Crew. These writings are inspired by true events. Some of the characters, names and events have been fictionalized. Any similarity to the name, character or history of any person is entirely coincidental and completely unintentional. We reserve the right to use a nom de guerre for any individual character found in these stories.