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Surely everyone who has sailed offshore has experienced that same elevation of the spirit, an upwelling of the life force, or whatever you choose to call it; you’d have to be dead inside not to.
If I’m racing, I sail to win. If I’m cruising, I sail to relax. The sailing bug bit me 20 years ago, and I’ve never recovered.  

Readers Write on the Essence of Seamanship

by Sail Staff, Posted July 8, 2013
In our July 2013 issue, regular contributor Tom Cunliffe reflected on the essence of seamanship. We asked about your views on seamanship, and you answered. Here are a few reader-submitted takes on the essence of seamanship.
During the summer sailing season I had kept Radiant Beam close to my favorite cruising grounds near Pamlico Sound in North Carolina. As November approached, however, it was time to bring the boat back to her homeport in Wilmington.

In Search of an Iceberg

by Maura Flaherty, Posted February 20, 2013
Teresa Carey and her husband, Ben, plan to release their documentary film, One Simple Question, to film festivals this summer. The film follows the couple as they move aboard their Bristol Channel Cutter 28 Elizabeth and set sail in search of a mammoth iceberg adrift in the North Atlantic. 

Windshifts: The Worst Day

by Matts Djos, Posted August 15, 2013
Though we’d dragged our 6,000-pound Balboa 26 over three mountain ranges and through seven passes, our pilgrimage from Colorado to Washington State had been relatively carefree. After that we’d spent three weeks in the Gulf Islands east of Vancouver, all without a serious mishap. Then, as we were moored in Oak Harbor preparing for the final leg back to Seattle, everything changed.
An experienced skipper with an inexperienced crew gets into trouble during a post-race delivery
One beautiful afternoon last August I sat on an old-growth cedar stump that had washed up on the beach in a winter storm and watched a blue gale blow up the Straits of Juan de Fuca. The straits are straddled to the south by the aptly named 11,000-foot-high Hurricane Ridge and 20-plus miles to the north by the beach where I sat.
The first time I saw a spinnaker I was only a few years old. It was flying on the bow of a 35ft foot cruiser off the coast of Maine. A few years later, my father agreed to set the kite on our 50ft Hinckley, a rare concession.
The wind was too light to sail, so we started out motoring. Soon, however, my buddy’s motor started heating up. The access hatch was buried under camping gear, and he didn’t want to investigate right then, so he shut his engine down, and I took his boat in tow.
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