Destination Niue: The Rock of Polynesia

Experiencing a unique and pleasant isle along the Coconut Milk Run  (published March 2014) For all his discoveries, Captain James Cook did register a few misses. The great navigator sailed right past Sydney Harbor, for one thing, and failed to notice New Zealand’s gorgeous Milford Sound. In the grand scheme

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Salty Dawg Rally Update

(published March 2014) As winter in the Caribbean rolls on, the 110-strong Salty Dawg fleet that sailed in company last November from Hampton, Va. to The Bitter End Yacht Club in the B.V.I. is enjoying the pleasures of cruising in the topics. Some boats have remained in the B.V.I. while

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Victoria, British Columbia

48.4222° N, 123.3657° W  (published February 2014) In Coasting, Jonathan Raban makes a distinction between continental people and island people. For most of us, the continental people, the shore is an endpoint, a geographic border past which we do not look for opportunity or inspiration. But for islanders, the shore

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Radio Check

A guide to VHF radio communication and your safety  (published February 2014) In the ever-evolving age of modern marine electronics, the humble VHF still stands out as one of the most simple and effective communication tools we have aboard. Whether using it to hail for a bridge opening, to call

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Satellite Phones at Sea

Voice and data communications has never been easier for cruisers  (published February 2014) The call came in on schedule from Lime’n at sea. “Can you hear me?” Tony called into the handset of the Spot Globalstar phone. “Loud and clear,” I answered from the relative safety of my desk at

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SSB Email and Weather Made Easy

An instant guide to receiving SSB email and weather at sea  (published February 2014) SSB radios are one of the most useful tools for sending and receiving information while offshore or in remote locales. Due to their long range (several thousand miles is quite common), independence from complex networks or

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Sweet Spots on the Rio Dulce

Part II: Getting to one of the western Caribbean's best hurricane holes  (published February 2014) Still hoping that it wasn’t a huge mistake to take the boat up the Rio Dulce, we hauled anchor and started the engine, eager to put Livingston behind us. It wasn’t only the town’s costly

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Herd Instinct

Deciding when to head offshore can be tricky, and subject to the opinions of those around you  (published February 2014) It had been a rough passage from England to Cape Town, South Africa. Drum had almost sunk— again! On that, then-most-recent trip in 1985, several of the flat panel composite

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Bonifacio, Corsica

Lat    41°23', 4N; Long 009°09', 8E  (published January 2014) Most of the planning we did for a week’s charter from the new Sunsail base in Cannigione, Sardinia, was around the logistics of getting there from the United States. We also read the excellent guidebook Italian Waters Pilot, published by Imray,

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True Reliability

Where to look when building redundancy into your boat's systems  (published January 2014) Cruising boats are simple but contradictory things: a heap of essential, often complex, systems that you rely on for transportation, comfort and safety. Failure of a critical system at the best of times can be expensive and

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