Bermuda Fitted Dinghies

Bermuda is a very different place than it was 50 years ago when I was a child, but one of the few things that has endured from that time is the Bermuda Fitted Dinghy. Fourteen feet one inch long, alarmingly overcanvased, stubbornly old fashioned and raced with a six person crew, one of whom bails continuously when going up-wind—there is nothing quite like them anywhere else.

It was great to see one out practicing last night. Oh, by the way, the rig she is carrying in the photographs is a small one! You see, Fitted Dinghies don’t reef, they change the whole rig: mast, boom and sails. The skipper must make the decision before the race; too small and you are last, too big and you are swimming.

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Meet the Author


John was born and brought up in Bermuda and started sailing as a child, racing locally and offshore before turning to cruising. He has sailed over 100,000 miles, most of it on his McCurdy & Rhodes 56, Morgan's Cloud, including eight ocean races to Bermuda, culminating in winning his class twice in the Newport Bermuda Race. He has skippered a series of voyages in the North Atlantic, the majority of which have been to the high latitudes. John has been helping others go voyaging by sharing his experience for twenty years, first in yachting magazines and, for the last 12 years, as co-editor/publisher of AAC.

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