Question: I recently purchased a GSM phone for when I travel on business and pleasure to Europe and Asia. What interests me is how do I arrange in advance the software and Sim cards for say Hong Kong, so that when I am there, I can get my e-mail as well as use the phone [...]
Navtex is an invaluable resource for weather and ice information. When our old Furuno combined weather fax and navtex receiver died, we balked at paying the high price (over a thousand dollars) of a new Furuno navtex and so bought another brand. So started a long story of not being able to receive navtex transmissions [...]
We have found that having a forward scan sonar has made exploring in the high latitudes safer and more feasible. Instead of feeling our way along at 2 knots when off the charts, we can now travel confidently at 6 knots, since the forward scan reaches out up to 200 meters ahead. Also, the sounder [...]
We purchased two Lifeline batteries in 2001. After only two years, one of the batteries failed. We contacted Lifeline, told them our charging and use patterns, and they sent us two new batteries at no cost to us—they even paid the shipping—and with no arguments. That’s standing behind your product! Update, August 2010: AGM batteries [...]
Before spending the winter in Arctic Norway, knowing we would be spending a lot of time below on the boat during the winter darktime, we replaced our old dim, inefficient overhead lights with Alpenglow fluorescents. What a difference! They give off a warm natural light and are beautifully designed and built. Not cheap but worth [...]
Question: What can you tell me about receiving Greenland ice charts by satellite phone? Is it a good solution and more reliable than weather fax? Answer: We have had problems getting ice information reliably by weather fax too, but unfortunately satellite transfer does not completely solve the problem either: We have an Iridium and a [...]
Question: We are having trouble getting our Treadmaster deck covering to stay stuck to our bare aluminum deck. What can you tell me about getting epoxy to stick to aluminum reliably? Answer: We did not have to stick our Treadmaster to bare aluminum, but rather to the filler that covers the entire boat. However, we [...]
It all started with six weeks of intense work last June stripping the deck for painting. Every cleat, every track, every fitting and every hatch came off and slowly a 10’x20’ storage unit filled with boat bits. As we suspected, it was definitely time to go over everything and although the boat and her gear [...]
Question: How easy is it to get money and shop in Greenland? Answer: ATM machines in larger towns will give you Danish kroner on your card. Provisions are surprisingly good in the larger towns, although fresh vegetables are hard to get and the price of what is there will curl your hair.
Question: I am wondering if you know whether anyone has circumnavigated Greenland in a sailboat. Do you think it’s possible? My guess is that global warming has changed things up there and it may now be possible. Answer: As far as I know, Greenland has never been circumnavigated in any vessel. If memory serves, the [...]
Our 16-year old Avon dinghy may not be much to look at, but it just keeps on floating! The bottom is covered with patches necessary after many rocky beach haul ups, not to mention being used as a pusher boat to move growlers in Greenland, but the pontoons still hold air for at least a [...]
Our last news letter was written from Isafjørdur on the northwest coast of Iceland where we were getting ready to cross Denmark Strait to Greenland. This comes to you from the Bras d’Or Lakes, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia. The intervening 2000 miles and seven weeks have been intense, rewarding, and yes, stressful too. Ammassalik, on [...]
Well, we finally made the break from Norway and leaving was as hard as we expected it to be. Especially since we left the coast at Ålesund, one of the most beautiful of Norwegian cities and especially beautiful in the long golden light of late evening with a perfect rainbow framing the city thrown in [...]
Our last newsletter ended with our decision to spend a second winter in Tromsø. What a good idea that was: We cemented the friendships we made our first winter and made new friends; we improved our skiing, though we are still nowhere as good as the Norwegians; and we realized that Tromsø, Norway, and Norwegians, [...]
We last wrote from the west coast of Spitsbergen. From there we continued north visiting several anchorages, the most interesting being Virgohamna from where André left on his fatal attempt to reach the North Pole in a balloon. The dry Svalbard climate has preserved the remains of this expedition, and the slightly later Wellman attempt, [...]
Nothing on this website or in direct communications received from us, or in our articles in the media, should be construed to mean or imply that offshore voyaging is anything other than potentially hazardous. Dangers such as, but not limited to, extreme weather, cold, ice, lack of help or assistance, gear failure, grounding, and falling overboard could injure or kill you and wreck your boat.
Decisions such as, but not limited to, heading offshore, where you go, and how you equip your boat, are yours and yours alone. The information on this web site is based on what has worked for the authors in the past, but that does not mean it will work for you, or that it is the best, or even a good way for you to do things.