12 Electronic Navigation Tips From a Cruise on Someone Else’s Boat

My temporary, but quite functional, navigation setup on Sable.

As most of you know, I just got back from a short single-handed cruise on a borrowed Hinkley 41 named Sable. I hadn't single-handed in a while, and it's years since I spent any appreciable time on a boat other than Morgan's Cloud.

During the last two days of our mini-cruise, we (Sable and me) transited the Reversing Falls and Saint John Harbour, crossed the very tidal Bay of Fundy, and made two tricky approaches—one to a strait where the tide runs at over four knots—all of it in fog and with plenty of traffic around to keep it interesting.

Definitely a good navigation work-out, particularly with unfamiliar electronics. And busy enough that I was well aware of the potential for an accident if I "lost the bubble" for even a moment.

Here's some stuff I did to make that less likely:

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 25 years, first in yachting magazines and, for the last 20 years, as co-editor/publisher of AAC.

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments