Cruising Tips

Best Stern Anchors

by Peter Nielsen, Posted November 29, 2012
If you’re getting into serious cruising, there will be times when you want to set a stern anchor. Usually this involves emptying fenders, lines and whatnot out of a cockpit locker until you unearth the kedge and its rode.

Don't Over Trim

by Charles J. Doane, Posted November 28, 2012
Next time the wind goes soft, instead of submitting to this self-fulfilling prophesy of slow-going, try opening up the slot between your mainsail and headsail.
One of the best things about being retired is that it allows me to spend some quality time doing what I really like. One such escape—wife willing—is a month-long stay on my sailboat on San Francisco Bay.

Furled Too Tight

by Connie McBride, Posted November 18, 2012
On a good day a furling headsail is like magic. You pull on the furling line and your sail is neatly rolled away until you need it again. At some point, however, most of us have rolled up our headsail in such high winds that it furls much more tightly than usual...
See our five most useful boat items and then share your own! If we like your list, we might print it in an upcoming issue of SAIL.

Smartphone Anchor Watch

by Donald McLennan, Posted November 8, 2012
Many onboard electronics systems include anchor-watch alarms that sound if a boat drifts too far from where you anchored it. But what if you’re ashore at that time?
I’ve been on the wrong end of a towline twice. At the very least, being towed will ruin your afternoon. At worst, it can cause serious damage to your boat or injury to your crew. Knowing what to expect and what to do to help yourself—or to help others help you—will ensure things go safely and smoothly.

What's an Ocean Gyre?

by Teresa Carey, Posted November 1, 2012
A few years ago, the Gulf Stream swiftly carried me home from the Bahamas while simultaneously tormenting me with waterspouts. It got me thinking...

Deck Bladders

by Aussie Bray, Posted October 15, 2012
Fuel capacity usually isn’t an issue in home waters, but it becomes important when long-range cruising sailboats have to motor for extended periods.
While Automatic Identification Systems (AIS) have been appearing on more commercial and recreational vessels, many sailors still find it to be cost-prohibitive. As an alternative, I recently used a combination of smartphone apps and AIS websites...
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