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bluewater cruising
As if the murder of four American cruisers last week wasn't enough to shine a big spotlight on the Indian Ocean's Somali piracy problem, the big crisis this week is that the Somalis have grabbed a Danish family of five, including three kids (ages 12 to 16), who were en route to the Red Sea...
Yikes. Things are getting grim out there. Just last week I blogged about the tragic Emma Goldman disaster, wherein a young 25-year-old woman lost her dad at sea. Now comes word that another young woman, Canadian Myda Egrmajer, 24, got to see her dad, Milan Egrmajer, 58, shot and killed by a gang of thieves who...
I meant to post something about this amazing video Hold Fast when I first found it, but it's quite long (over an hour), particularly for something put up for free at Vimeo. I've now watched it twice. I'm sticking it here in the Lit Bits category, because it rises to that level. This isn't some...
Yet another intriguing bit of kit I sussed out in Annapolis is this new Max-Prop Ecowind propeller from PYI. As described to me by PYI's Fred Hutchinson, the prop has a spring in the hub that automatically varies the forward pitch of the blades as the load on the blades changes. By maintaining optimal pitch...
  Here's one interesting weirdness about this tragic Mike-Got-Mauled-On-His-Boat tale: initial reports, which basically came verbatim from the victim himself, had the location all wrong. First it happened in Martinique, or in Guadeloupe, then finally it was St. Martin. The Aussie Sail-World site (which I believe originally reported the location as Guadeloupe, though they seem...
FROM AN EARLY AGE it was this image in particular, by artist Rockwell Kent, and a few others like it, that were pressed into my mind as nearly Jungian archetypes of what a life afloat must be like. There were several of Kent's dynamic high-contrast wood-block prints hanging about our house while I was growing...
Before Joshua Slocum could become the man we remember today--the one who invented bluewater cruising by sailing around the world singlehanded in a rebuilt oyster smack named Spray--his prior life first had to be unmade. Identifying such turning points is sometimes an arbitrary business, but in Slocum’s case there is little doubt about when his...
  That ugly thing you see here labelled GALE, right under New England, is why I decided to abort my attempt to bring Lunacy home from Bermuda this week. Back when I lived on the boat I was cruising this wouldn't have been a wrenching decision. There are, after all, worse fates in life than...
Legend has it the idea for this unique pocket cruiser was born round a campfire in Baja California in the early 1970s as two brothers, Dean and Stan Wixom, speculated on alternative modes of exploring Baja and the Sea of Cortez. They were on motorcycles, had tired of the dusty ride, and thought a small,...
One thing I learned early on in my bluewater sailing career is that there are, in fact, just two sorts of bluewater sailors: there are poets, who become engineers in spite of themselves, and there are engineers, who become poets in spite of themsel ves. I count myself among the former. From the very beginning,...
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