Coastal Currents

(published July 2012) [caption id="attachment_4622" align="alignleft" width="323"] Schematic rotating current diagram. As opposed to pure reversing currents found inland, which alternate their direction, coastal currents tend to rotate their direction with little or no change in speed. At the time of high water, this coastal region has a north current

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Medicine on Board

By the time you're looking for your medical kit, it's already too late to start getting prepared  (published July 2012) Racing around the world in the 1998-99 Around Alone Race, singlehanded Russian sailor Viktor Yazykov faced a potentially life-threatening situation—the abscess on his elbow required draining. Even to a former

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Essential Offshore Gear

The SSB Radio demystified: Part Two  (published June 2012) Heard the SSB is too complicated to install or learn to use? Think again. Modern SSB radios are no harder to learn than your TV set, and new gear allows them to be installed far easier than before, at lower cost

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Where On Earth Are You?

Tracking devices abound, and they are only improving  (published June 2012) The skipper on Thursday’s Child took a few moments out from dealing with the heavy weather on deck. It was cold. And the Southern Ocean waves were huge—40 feet or higher. More than 2,000 miles from land and singlehanding

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Correcting for Current

(published May 2012) In many inland waters, tidal current flow is a dominating factor in navigation. In special cases like the Gulf Stream, it can also be crucial in the ocean. With a working GPS, it is less of a challenge once underway because we can see directly from our

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Weather Wizardry

Sailing season is the time to be aware, and the place to start is www.weather4sailors.com  (published May 2009) We’ve all seen the headlines and read the stories. Each year, someone is caught unaware by an approaching squall, knocked down in a gale or storm, and hurt—or worse. Last year it

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Essential Offshore Gear

The SSB radio, demystified  (published April 2012) SSB radios are king when it comes to reliable, long-range communications. Above and beyond satellite phones, the SSB gives you the unparalleled ability to communicate to many other listeners simultaneously, requires no service contracts, and provides a wealth of information to you at

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Bermuda and Beyond

Getting from the East Coast to Bermuda can present a road full of potholes  (April 2012) It’s another Bermuda Race year. That, however, is just one of the many reasons that sailors fetch up on those wreck-strewn, reef-surrounded, sandy, and yet still hospitable shores. At times, it can be a

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Know Your Limits!

The invisible lines on the water that affect your rights underway  (published March 2012) Mariners who sail both U.S. inland and coastal waters are required to know one set of boundary limits—the ones that mark the jurisdiction of the U.S. Inland Navigation Rules. These boundaries are called Demarcation Lines; they

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Communication Leadership

(Published March 2012) The forecasts suggested that the hurricane may be closing with our projected track in the next four or five days. But already we were facing the effects of an extra-tropical low-pressure system, and the sustained winds from that less daunting system were projected to get up to

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