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News & Views

Updates on what’s going on in the sport of sailing generally (most usually, but not always, relating to cruising under sail) and in the sailing industry, plus news nuggets and personal views on all manner of nautical subjects.

Looks like we're going to have open up a Rape & Murder category here on WaveTrain. This time it's a breaking story: Javier Martin, a Spanish national, is the top suspect in two sailing murders committed recently in Panama, and as I type he is the subject of an international manhunt. The body of one...
This just blows my mind. Check out the difference in size between one of Christopher Columbus' ships and a Chinese treasure ship commanded by Zheng He many years prior to Columbus' famous voyage in 1492. It certainly makes you think about the ebb and flow of history. The Chinese, I am sure, are thinking about...
At last, here's some serious recognition for my man Alessandro di Benedetto, who set a world record back in July for smallest boat used in a non-stop solo circumnavigation. Setting the record was one thing, but you'll recall what was truly remarkable about Alessandro's voyage was that he sailed the last three months on his...
Ah, mortality. It says something of the sort of man he was that I first learned of the recent demise of my old cruising acquaintance Poppa Neutrino while reading the Wall Street Journal this morning. You'll recall I blogged about him in November, when his attempt to circumnavigate the world on a raft made of...
I'm surprised this doesn't happen all the time. I've never been aloft underway on a yacht, much less on a square-rigger. But I've watched square-rigger crews swarm aloft in harbor and, even with the ship firmly tied to a dock, my testicles have instantly shriveled at the thought of climbing out to the end of...
Folks messing around on boats anywhere from the northern Bahamas to Cape Hatteras need to know their GPS receivers may or may not sometimes go crazy over the next month. This according to a rather cryptic FAA advisory warning pilots of military GPS tests being conducted between January 20 and February 22.
Some spectacular videos of the awful flooding in Brisbane, Australia, have been posted online in the last week. It's one thing to hear or read about these sorts of catastrophes in the news, but when you watch home videos of what's going on you get a much more personal view of things. As a cruising...
Getting raped by the airlines has been a recurrent theme during our family winter sailing excursions. Two years ago JetBlue cancelled all their flights out of St. Maarten and held us prisoner there for an extra day, at our expense, because they were afraid to fly in microscopic amounts of volcanic ash emanating from the...
I'm remembering that famous line from The Treasure of Sierra Madre: "Keels? We don't need no stinking keels!" And, apparently, you don't. Not all the time anyway. For proof of this I offer into evidence the eyebrow-raising tale of Polbream, a Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 37 in charter service in Falmouth, England. As documented in recent...
We touched on the subject of solar wind back in May when the Japanese successfully launched IKAROS, the first solar-wind-driven spacecraft. Now it's in the news again, as NASA announced last week that its 33-year-old probe Voyager 1, currently about 10.4 billion miles from Earth, has reached an area where the solar wind is no...
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