The Offshore Voyaging Reference Site

  • The Long Ocean Road To South Georgia—Part II

    The Long Ocean Road To South Georgia—Part II

    Part 2 of Colin’s story about a man who designed and built his own boat and then sailed her to one of the toughest voyaging destinations in the world. Don’t miss this inspiring read.

    Read more: The Long Ocean Road To South Georgia—Part II
  • The Long Ocean Road To South Georgia—Part I

    The Long Ocean Road To South Georgia—Part I

    Colin’s story about a man that dreamt of building a great boat…and did.

    Read more: The Long Ocean Road To South Georgia—Part I
  • Us And Them

    Us And Them

    Boat Boys in the Eastern Caribbean. Now there’s a subject to rouse passionate debate in any group of cruisers. Colin does his usual insightful and sensitive job of exploring the issue, along with some great tips for dealing with the practitioners of that trade.

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  • Paradise Found—or Lost?

    Paradise Found—or Lost?

    Sad to leave Grenada, Lou and Colin carry on up the island chain, with stops at St. Vincent and the Grenadines and the Tobago Cays.

    Read more: Paradise Found—or Lost?
  • Keeping The Water Out—Deck

    Keeping The Water Out—Deck

    Colin continues in his pursuit of watertight integrity by looking at ways to waterproof deck fittings.

    Read more: Keeping The Water Out—Deck
  • Lights Out!

    Lights Out!

    After a stressful passage from Trinidad, Colin and Lou reach Grenada and a warm Caribbean welcome.

    Read more: Lights Out!
  • Keeping The Water Out—Topsides

    Keeping The Water Out—Topsides

    There are few things more miserable on a boat at sea than salt water below from deck leaks. And if said leaks get bad enough, they can sink you.

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  • Don’t Leave It Too Late

    It’s a time of year when all of us, hopefully, are focused on the things that really matter, family, friends and life direction, and Colin has the perfect post to fit into that. Don’t miss it. I promise it will make you think and it might just change your life.

    Read more: Don’t Leave It Too Late
  • Watertight Bulkheads

    Watertight Bulkheads

    Though watertight bulkheads are arguably not imperative on a cruising boat they could give you some extra time when it really counts.

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  • Life In The Bus Lane*

    Life In The Bus Lane*

    Pélerin serves her time in a boatyard in Trinidad in preparation for heading to the Caribbean.

    Read more: Life In The Bus Lane*
  • What We Did On Our Summer Holidays

    What We Did On Our Summer Holidays

    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.

    Read more: What We Did On Our Summer Holidays
  • What’s New In Alternative Energy?

    What’s New In Alternative Energy?

    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.

    Read more: What’s New In Alternative Energy?
  • Brazil As A Cruising Destination

    Brazil As A Cruising Destination

    Colin provides a clear-eyed analysis of the benefits and challenges of cruising Brazil. Not only is this chapter of use to those with that country in their cruising plans, Colin 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.

    Read more: Brazil As A Cruising Destination
  • Crash Testing a Relationship

    Crash Testing a Relationship

    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.

    Read more: Crash Testing a Relationship
  • Our Changing Oceans

    Our Changing Oceans

    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.

    Read more: Our Changing Oceans
  • Spade Rudders—Ready for Sea?

    Spade Rudders—Ready for Sea?

    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 […]

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  • Forward Into The Past

    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 […]

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  • Coming To a Remote Spot Near You…

    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 […]

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  • Éric Tabarly

    Éric Tabarly

    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 […]

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  • Brazil’s Green Heart

    Brazil’s Green Heart

    After a few days in Rio, Colin and Lou are ready for peace and quiet, which they seek in Mata Atlantica, a little known natural area of rainforests and savannahs that runs from Brazil down to Argentina, followed by a visit to the charming old city of Paraty.

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  • The Stars May Be Out…

    The Stars May Be Out…

    Sometimes cruising in foreign lands in a foreign language can be exhausting and overwhelming. That’s when the kindness of strangers can make all the difference. Colin describes just such an experience during their approach to Rio de Janeiro.

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  • Two Anchors Done Right

    Two Anchors Done Right

    Colin discusses how to set two anchors when there is no other way to anchor safely.

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  • Keeping The Water Flowing

    Keeping The Water Flowing

    Colin has some great tips that will help you maintain your engine’s raw water system.

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  • Islands On The Edge

    Islands On The Edge

    Pelerin’s shoal draft comes in very handy when Colin and Lou visit the National Park of the Arqipélago dos Abrolhos—a remote island archipelago and one of those places where you feel about as safe as the mouse that dwelt in the cat’s ear (Bill Tilman).

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  • The Changing Face of Brazil

    The Changing Face of Brazil

    The Baia de Camamu still offers quiet anchorages in beautiful surroundings. But the number of pleasure boats has increased incrementally in recent years. Will Brazil find a way to ensure all can enjoy and benefit from the popularity of the Baia without losing its essential magic?

    Read more: The Changing Face of Brazil