In the past I met many people who expressed amazement and envy for my then way of life: skippering yachts on wildlife research projects. And for the most part they were right, it was an enviable way of life. And although the pay was awful and the hours endless, the rewards were colossal, not least in [...]
So how do you unwind from a long and challenging voyage across the Atlantic to Brazil by sailboat? Well, if you are Colin, you do a long and challenging science project by...you guessed it, sailboat.
Developments in alternative energy systems are coming thick and fast these days, so Colin visited the Southampton Boat Show and has filed this report on the latest in fuel cells, solar panels, and hydro-generators.
Colin finishes off his online book about a Trans-Atlantic via a route less traveled with a clear eyed analysis of the benefits and challenges of cruising Brazil. Not only will this chapter be of use to those with that country in their cruising plans, Colin also does a masterful job of discussing the issues that a voyager visiting any country with a very different language and culture from their own should consider.
Colin continues the tale that he started in the last chapter of his and Louise's intentional relationship test by fire.
It's a lovely story, with a great conclusion, that should not be missed.
Going cruising with your partner may sound romantic, and it is. But there are also few activities that are more stressful on a relationship. Colin tells the story of his first tough passage with Lou. One that they took on intentionally to see how they would manage as a team at sea. It's an example that all couples considering the voyaging life should emulate--Crash Test the Relationship before committing everything to a new life on the ocean.
Jimmy Cornell is undoubtedly one of the most important people to offshore voyaging of his generation. Colin caught up to him for a wide ranging interview on what this consummate entrepreneur is planning next as well as his latest publication.
Some time ago I posted here with my views on the suitability of spade rudders for offshore cruising. Having lost a spade rudder that looked to be in A1 condition, naturally my thoughts at the time were coloured by that disaster. Despite the fact that I had up until that time owned three yachts that had [...]
Most of our regular readers will know well that I am a dedicated fan of metal boats, so the following post may come as something of a surprise. For although Lou and I chose aluminium for our own voyaging boat, I still retain a love of wooden boats—aesthetically at least—particularly the honest, robust gaff-rigged wooden [...]
In my experience long distance cruisers are great lovers of the marine environment, whether it be clean seas, marine wildlife or their favourite wild places. If that is indeed true, we’d be the last people to want to cause harm to pristine places, either deliberately or unwittingly. And yet, as I recently learned, the latter [...]
The red trimaran alongside us crashes through another short steep sea and a jet of water with the ferocity of a fire hose blasts her from stem to stern as she claws her way upwind into a steady 35 knots at the start of the 1986 Route du Rhum race off the French port of [...]
Leaving Rio wasn’t difficult for us. After just a few days in the city we were longing for the peace and quiet of rural Brazil once more, far from the noise and security concerns of the big city. Besides, we had an overdue appointment to keep with one of the country’s great natural wonders, the [...]
Land people sometimes ask what we cruisers do out there in the dark in the middle of the ocean. You don't keep going all night, do you? Yes, we keep sailing. Don’t you just go to bed? No, we have to keep a watch out at all times. What for—surely there’s nothing out there? Well not a [...]
Some of my favourite anchorages are strongly tidal, a perverse eccentricity you may think. But I love the living feeling of the boat as she swings to the new tide, and the ever-changing view scratches my curiosity constantly and gives me a heightened sense of place. Other than that, tidal anchorages only offer endless possibilities [...]
Left to my own devices I could happily be a lazy guy, but that’s by no means a good thing to be when you’re in charge of a boat. When running charter boats that are in daily use, daily, weekly and monthly maintenance check lists are absolutely de rigeur to ensure that, random mechanical failure apart, the boat [...]