by Patrick Childress

Fenders for Tenders

by Patrick Childress, Posted November 15, 2011
Inflatable dinghies are rough and tough, but their skin is thin. If your rubber duck leads a hard life, adding some protective padding in key spots will reduce chafe and help prevent the little boat from developing an odd list when least expected.
Avatar, a 37-foot Swiss-flagged boat with owners Beat and Lola on board, had set sail from Tahaa, an island a few miles southeast of Bora Bora in French Polynesia. Just a day later, while sailing westward on a comfortable reach, the boat’s helm suddenly became unresponsive.

Night Flight

by Patrick Childress, Posted July 7, 2009
Not a sliver of moon nor a single star could pierce the thick clouds. We were sailing, levitating, in total darkness. Keeping Brick House, our Valiant 40, just half a mile off the unlit rocky shore was the only way to stay out of the swift counter-current as we fought our way south along Mexico’s Caribbean coast. It was important to sail all night and make good time
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