Gus Hancock, 73, of Chicago, began sailing with his father in an Old Town canoe in 1950. A deserted beach, a tarp and a campfire were their accommodations during early cruises on Barnegat Bay before they garage-built a 16-foot wooden daysailer. Offshore adventures followed, including Newport-Bermuda races and cruises to the Bay of Fundy in the 1960s. In 1970, Gus crewed on a Cal 37 in the Los Angeles to Tahiti Transpac Race and spent the summer cruising Tahiti, the Tuamotus, the Marquesas and Hawaii.
Your charter stories in the March issue had my mind traveling afar, and I’d like to be a bareboat captain. How does a charter company know that someone is sufficiently qualified or experienced to charter its craft? Some sailors are extremely capable, but have no specific schooling or credentials.
Charles Hammond, Kingston, MA
When you have to make a docking line fast to a ring or bollard, a round turn and two half hitches is better than a bowline. Why? Because you can untie the round turn and two half hitches when the line is under load; try that with a bowline and you’ll soon be reaching for a knife. As a fringe benefit, the round turn also resists chafe.