Cruising Most Commented
- Dec 03, 2013
- Nov 21, 2013
- Nov 06, 2013
For many people, sailing across the Atlantic falls into the same category as climbing Mt. Everest. Even among serious sailors, a transatlantic crossing is not something to be taken lightly. Not only is it logistically challenging, it’s weather-sensitive, resource-dependent and more than a little intimidating.
After the rigors of our Ouija board navigation, Ken treated me to a spontaneous VHF serenade. Suddenly, blasting out of the radio came the unmistakable sound of the “Ride of the Valkyries.” I grabbed the microphone and hollered to my mid-ocean friend, “Charley don’t surf…Charley don’t surf!”
Cockpits get cluttered underway or at anchor. Inevitably someone steps on that wayward tube of sunscreen, someone else sits on your sunglasses, and small stuff goes missing. If you want to keep everything within reach and handy, you need pockets.
My running diesel made a clunking sound, followed by silence. Next came the sound of rushing water, as if from a large hose. I quickly pulled the companionway steps off the engine compartment and saw tannin-darkened river water gushing in around the propeller shaft, a shocking confirmation of my worst fear. If the flooding water couldn’t be stopped, Kelly IV, my 1979 Endeavour 32, would be lost.
It's no secret that the popularity of recreational sailing in America is ebbing and, sadly, has been for decades. According to the US Coast Guard, since 1999 sailboat registrations have dropped by more than 25% , a trend that began back in the early '80s, and now barely 2% of all registered boats are powered by the wind.