Editors Gone Sailing


Just a quick post to share that we are back on Morgan’s Cloud and off on a cruise to our beloved Newfoundland. So we may be a bit erratic with posting and commenting over the next two months or so.

Also, what we do publish will tend to be more about the places we visit and the experiences we have than technical in nature.

Having said that, those of you who are more interested in technical posts should have no fear since we are taking notes, making photographs, and even shooting some video, as the basis of lots more technical posts that will start to roll out in the fall.

In the meantime, don’t forget that there are over 900 posts, most of them technical, in our archive (see the top menu) and 29 Online Books to keep you busy.

Also, I have the long awaited Adventure 40 progress post all done and we will publish it soon. And we will be publishing the next chapter on power trains soon, this one clearly explaining the complex world of propellers in the way that only Matt can.

To kick off the cruising focus, here are a few photos from our cruise so far to remind us what the end goal of all the technical stuff is. (Click on photos to enlarge).

Let’s start off with Maskells Harbour, Bras d’Or Lakes, Nova Scotia, surely one of the world’s great cruising anchorages.


That is until the neighbourhood went to hell.


Just to clarify, the above cheap shot had nothing to do with it being a motorboat (we have nothing against them and might even own one someday), but everything to do with the damned thing’s size and the extreme wealth inequality it represents.

Never mind, 150-foot super-yachts won’t find us here.

JHHOMD1-8040034Happy summer (northern hemisphere) all. We hope that you too are out on the water.

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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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18 comments … add one
  • Richard Dykiel Aug 6, 2015, 10:49 am

    Fair winds!
    (I won’t comment on the wealth inequality between your boat and my Dana 24 🙂

    • John Aug 6, 2015, 11:39 am

      Hi Richard,

      That brings up an interesting point I should clarify: I’m no communist, or even socialist, who believes that we should all have the same amount of wealth, what worries me, is the excessive disparity we are seeing today graphically demonstrated by the explosion of huge yachts. Which brings me to John’s theory of economics: when private yachts start to exceeded 300-feet in length the next depression, or revolution, is less than 10 years away. (Last time was 1920s).

      • RDE Aug 9, 2015, 1:32 pm

        Hi John,
        There is a reason why the .001% really NEED a 300′ yacht. Anything smaller and the quarters for their private army would be too small. Back in the day when a 112′ sailboat was considered large the one I helped build (to my eternal shame) was sold to a new owner. The first thing he wanted to change was to upgrade the pilothouse windows to full bulletproof specification. Soon thereafter I spent a winter living in Sun Valley. There was always a new Bell Jet Ranger parked outside at the edge of the tarmac. Asked a friend who worked at the airport what the deal was that it was never moved into a hanger. “On that belongs to ——– (owner of the 112′ S & S) He flies his pilot out in advance to have the Bell warmed up so they can step directly from their Citation into the chopper to fly the 8 miles out to the family compound. They are too afraid of being kidnapped and held for ransom to drive there.”

        Don’t think you and I will ever have that problem.

        There is a highly reliable inverse correlation between the size of yacht and the amount of time the owner actually spends aboard. The extreme case was Steve Jobs. After achieving Apple’s goal of having 200 billion dollars successfully laundered into offshore accounts and forever hidden from the IRS, he decided to enter the Megayacht Sweepstakes. Since Russian oligarchs had already raised the bar over 600′, he decided to build a little 300 footer and enter the World’s Ugliest Motoryacht (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oZfs9tI6roo) contest instead. Won hands down, but he never spent a single night on board.

        So there is still a great opportunity for you with Morgan’s Cloud. Enter the He-Who -Gets -The -Most-Pleasure -While-Sailing contest. All entrants who actually sail are automatic winners, and all Meagyacht owners are automatic losers because for them their boats serve only as symbols of inflated egos.

        • RDE Aug 9, 2015, 4:54 pm
        • John Aug 9, 2015, 5:02 pm

          Hi Richard,

          Love the contest. We will run it here at AAC. Not sure if we are the winners, but we sure score high after the last 24 years on MC.

          • Matt Aug 28, 2015, 6:15 pm

            That could be quite the contest.
            On the one hand, a friend and I flipped a Hobie 18 the other day, and while it was… exciting, that boat is no fun at all to right from 90-degrees.
            On the other hand, last week I was blasting along at 10+ knots in a 19-foot Hobie Mirage (basically a kayak with outriggers, a 90 sq.ft. high-roach mainsail, and two-finger sidestick steering), and that thing’s fun quotient is damned hard to beat by any metric I can imagine….

          • John Aug 30, 2015, 7:37 am

            Hi Matt,

            I agree, there is just nothing so much fun as going fast under sail on the water. I was a 505 sailor for years for just that reason.

  • John Aug 6, 2015, 9:00 pm

    Hi All,

    I goofed this afternoon, hit the wrong button and posted a draft of a post on propane safety that was definitely not ready for prime time. It was up for about 5 hours, but is now down.

    My apologies, said post will appear once The Editor Who Must Be Obeyed (Phyllis) does her magic.

    • Marc Dacey Aug 9, 2015, 12:59 pm

      John and Phyllis,
      Considering you manage this site at least some of the time from a boat via what must be on occasion sketchy access, I think it would be churlish to focus on minor errors!

      • John Aug 9, 2015, 5:05 pm

        Thanks, Marc.

  • Mike h Aug 7, 2015, 10:04 am


    Being originally from the “Rock,” I hope one day to circumnavigate the island. Do you have any plans to write a cruising guide for the fair isle of Newfoundland?

    Mike h

    • John Aug 8, 2015, 8:53 am

      Hi Mike,

      No, no plans to write a cruising guide, since there already is one.

      Having said that we are thinking about an online book “Phyllis and John’s Favourite Anchorages in Atlantic Canada” based on our destination posts. In the mean time you can read these here:https://www.morganscloud.com/category/north-america/nam-canada-east-coast/

      • Mike h Aug 9, 2015, 2:42 am

        John, thank you very much for those links. My day job lets me see those places from 35,000 feet. They are pretty from up high, but it doesn’t compare to what your photos portray. How I look forward to retracing some of your steps. Great articles and I look forward to your anchorage book:)


  • marty Aug 7, 2015, 5:25 pm

    Just a note , I just joined your web site and almost contested the charge as it was not in any way connected with your web site , only the amount and canada led me to figure it out. Think it might help to some how I D the charge. Love your pics and your site looking forward to maybe owning a adventure 40 Marty

    • John Aug 8, 2015, 8:49 am

      Hi Marty,

      Thanks for the kind comment.

      On the payment ID:

      Please help me understand this.

      First off, you should have received at least two notifications by email showing the amount you were charged.

      Also it should should show AAC NCG next to the charge on your credit card.

      Is there something I’m missing here?

      • Marc Dacey Aug 9, 2015, 1:02 pm

        By pure chance, I just paid my VISA and “AAC NCG” is precisely what the invoice said. The U.S. dollar conversion rate stings a bit. I need to start charging my clients more.

        • John Aug 9, 2015, 5:04 pm

          Hi Marc,

          I hear you on the conversion, but at least we are paying the 15% HST for you, or it would really sting!

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