Seamanship is Hard to Do

Seamanship is a word that gets bandied about all the time in the cruising community. But what does seamanship really mean? John and Phyllis get a hard real-world reminder.

Bare Feet, Or Not

John sticks his neck out and gets right controversial but it’s really all about seamanship…it’s always all about seamanship.

20 Myths About Offshore Sailing

I’m constantly amazed by the number of accepted “facts” about offshore sailing that, when subjected to rigorous analysis, turn out to be wrong. Here are 20 such myths.

Salty Dawg Rally—What The Hell?

I suspect that this post is not going to make me popular, but I’m seething about what’s happening with these rallies and offshore voyaging in general, so here goes—brace yourselves. What the heck is going on here? As I understand it, 116 boats were registered in the Salty Dawg Rally and at least five of [...]

The Definition of Seamanship

We offshore sailors tend to throw the word seamanship around with gay abandon, but what does it really mean? I have been thinking about that a lot lately. Here’s my definition.

I have got to the age where I’m comfortable with my bad habits and so the standard New Year’s resolutions hold little interest for me—I’m simply not giving up whisky* or chocolate. But as a voyaging sailor, I know that forgetting the basic rules of seamanship can be the slippery road to disaster. And even after [...]

Anatomy Of An Accident

It was 4:00 am on a black early morning anchored at Cape Lookout Harbour when Phyllis and I were awoken by a crash from up forward followed by a sickening scraping sound. A quick look out the companionway showed the outline of another sailboat reversing away from our bow. The outline looked a lot like [...]

Earl Comes To Lunch

Hurricanes, you just can’t trust em. When we went to bed Earl was supposed to make landfall on the west side of the province, some 80 miles away. But this morning he has wobbled east and is heading straight for us here on the southwestern shore of Nova Scotia. On the bright side, he is [...]

Always Have A Way To Rest

There is so much about this story (originally reported in Cruising Compass but no longer available) that worries me that it is hard to know where to start: A single-handed sailor abandoned his boat because he was totally exhausted from three days of hand steering, not because there was anything wrong with the boat. “On [...]

Laying-Up, A Break From Vigilence

Phyllis and I just finished laying-up Morgan’s Cloud for the winter at Billings Diesel and Marine in Maine, where we will be replacing the engine. As always, we are sad to move off the boat, which, over the last 18 years, has become more our home than any place else. But you know, there is [...]