Pace On When the Breeze is Off

How to coax out more speed and miles when the wind goes light  (published June/July 2017) Waves of rising heat seem to distort visions of the distance, and the sounds of insects seem to increase as everything else grows more silent. The surface of the water has assumed a flat,

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Northward Bound

Daylight lengthens, and rumor has it that the weather is getting warmer further to the north. It's time to leave the tropics in favor of northern summers  (published May 2017) Aquamarine water and pastel sunrises, warm breezes amidst softly swaying palm trees and the sound of tree frogs chirping: it

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Digging for Treasure

Spring is upon us, and it's time to ort through the various treasures hidden in the dark recesses of my seabag. Some are old standbys, others recent additions. They all have their place as sailing season warms up  (published April 2017) That humble, tattered canvas seabag doesn’t seem to get

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More Wind Than We Ever Wanted

Weather can change in the blink of an eye or slowly over time. But if you sail often enough and long enough, sooner or later you will get more wind than you ever wanted. Preparation and training  will help you cope with that reality  (published March 2017) It was only

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A New Glow for the Old Girl

She was a magnificent yacht in her day, and you’re the new proud owner. With a little tender loving care she can regain that youthful appearance, but, as with any new workout program, it doesn’t need to be accomplished in one undertaking  (published February 2017) Perhaps periodic routine maintenance by

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Decision Time

All of the weather forecasts from multiple sources indicated a likely and potentially dangerous passage. The real question was whether or not we would have the courage to stay tied to the dock or would ego and momentum keep us moving towards departure  (published October 2016) I still have a

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Dealing with a Hurricane

Tropical weather systems, and hurricanes in particular, have their own idiosyncrasies. Understanding them can help us deal with them more effectively. Misunderstanding them can be a disaster  (published September 2016) It was 7:30 p.m on a Sunday evening. The phone rang. Lia Ditton, a woman with whom I have sailed

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Fumbling for Solutions

If you’re attempting to address a medical emergency and you’re not prepared, you’re already too late  (published August 2016) Six months before we were scheduled to take Moondance across the North Atlantic, we began to assign tasks and areas of responsibility to the people scheduled to be onboard. Those responsible

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Offshore Anticipation

Preparations for the Bermuda Race are about to commence, but getting ready for an offshore passage isn't unfamiliar territory despite the myriad possibilities that lurk in the future  (published June 2016) I just made my flight reservations. Moondance, the Swan 56 we brought to Spain last June is now in

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Reaching Into Your Bag of Tricks

With enough time and miles at sea, encountering problems and equipment failures is inevitable. Having the original equipment manufacturers' authorized spares and repair kits onboard is not. Regardless of those mutually exclusive constraints, getting home safely is still your responsibility  (published May 2016) After years of rigorous training and practice,

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