By John SimonsOur Great Loop adventure took one year and covered 6,500 miles. We departed from Waukegan Harbor in mid-September 2015 and, after making a series of left turns, returned to Waukegan Harbor in September 2016. Our crew consisted of John and Priscilla Simons and Dale and Andy Arnold. Our adventure had been nearly five years in the planning, but yours can happen much faster. All we had to do was research and buy a motor yacht, learn to operate it, retire, and decide how we would handle our individual homes while on our adventure.
By Larry MacDonaldIn early February 2019, a polar vortex rolled across a wide swath of Canada and the northern U.S., bringing record-shattering low temperatures; sleet and snow; and high winds that toppled trees and power lines, creating power outages and traffic snarls.
To borrow a line from Monty Python: “And now for something completely different.”
By Michael Guelker-ConeMost of us have a bucket list of things we want to accomplish or places we want to go before heading off to that great marina in the sky. My list of places to visit has expanded along with my experience and the confidence that came with it. Many places on my list are close to home, including Washington’s Swinomish Channel. I kept putting it off because of the horror stories I’d heard of boaters running aground in the channel. In Seamanship and Piloting, I’d been warned that it wasn’t a matter of whether you’d ever run aground but when.
By Emmarie RabyThe crossing from Grand Portage, Minnesota, to Windigo at Isle Royale National Park takes you over 24 miles of open water. Because you can’t see land, you have to navigate using charts and set courses on the GPS. It’s fairly difficult to stay in a straight line with lots of waves and wind pushing you in different directions.
By Rafael BelliardWhen my first mate Linda, the perennial travel opportunities researcher, found the perfect way to round the cape, we decided to make it happen. We would take the trip with back-to-back cruises from Miami, Florida, to Valparaiso, Chile, and on to Buenos Aires, Argentina, which included the much sought-after “rounding of the Horn.”
By Dick SorensenOn a cloudless Ohio winter day, Dr. Ralph Newman of Columbus Sail & Power Squadron/29 led 20-plus Ohio State University Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps midshipmen out into the bright sunshine. The rest of the squadron’s Navigation instructors joined them to teach the basics of a noonday sight. As students raised their sextants to take their first reading, my mind flashed back to how this came about.
I had read in a recent issue of The Ensign that the United States Naval Academy was reintroducing the study of Celestial Navigation to the midshipman curriculum. My initial reaction
By Rafael BelliardGoing around South America’s Cape Horn has always been fraught with awe and understandable concerns about ships wrecked by rough seas, icebergs, huge waves, and strong currents. As avid cruising sailors and travelers, Linda and I had always dreamed of visiting South America and rounding Cape Horn.
When Linda, the perennial travel opportunities researcher, found the perfect way to round the cape, we decided to make it happen. We would take the trip within the sybaritic comforts of a cruise ship on back-to-back cruises from Miami, Florida, to Valparaiso, Chile, and on to Buenos Aires, Argentina, which included the much sought-after “rounding of the Horn.”Read More
By Randy White
I recently returned from sailing my new boat from Palma de Mallorca, Spain, to Marmaris, Turkey, a voyage of 1,453 nautical miles through 27 waypoints. We ended up sailing through a major storm, and I want to share the choices we made that led to that experience as well as the lessons we learned.
By Peter Baumgartner
Photos by Denisse Allaire
My first mate, Denisse Allaire, and I chartered a Beneteau 42.3 sailboat for a week in September from the Moorings in Placencia, Belize. The off-season rate made the three-cabin, two-head monohull affordable.
We flew from Denver to Houston, Houston to Belize City, and from Belize City to Placencia in a boxy Cessna. The Friday before the charter started, we rented a cute, air-conditioned beachfront cottage for the night. The next day did not go as smoothly.
I had been communicating with Palencia through the Moorings in the U.S., but our messages hadn’t been relayed. Denisse and I requested a two-person kayak we could fasten on deck instead of a dinghy. Belize did not get this message. Likewise, we didn’t get the message that our briefing was to begin at 9 a.m. and spent the morning shopping in the quaint town of Placencia.
By Patrick O’Brien
After years of living in Boulder, Colorado, we moved to Oriental, North Carolina, to cruise the Atlantic coast and beyond on a 40-foot Passport. After enduring the rigors of offshore sailing for two years, we sold the boat and returned to Boulder, only to stay for a year before leaving for Seattle, Washington.
Wanderlust seems to be a force in my life, and with it comes the desire to grow as a sailor.
Learning to slow down and enjoy cruising
By Laura Landis
I’ll never make up the 18 years I spent too far from the sea. I left the New Hampshire coast for New Mexico in 1996 and didn’t return until the summer of 2014 when I could no longer bear to be away. Thus began my return to cruising.
Last year was my third year on Artemis, a 1983 Sabre 34 I bought on eBay. The first year was challenging. The second year, I brought Artemis from Oriental, North Carolina, to Yarmouth, Maine. I pushed hard, was mostly alone and never had a real crew.
Planning and sailing a charter boat in the Dodecanese Islands
By Van Diehl
Fulfilling a lifelong dream of sailing to faraway destinations, my wife, Cida, and I have organized four charters, two in the British Virgin Islands and two in Greece. On our first Greek charter, we sailed around the Cyclades Islands in a Bavaria 45. For our second Greek charter, we wanted to sail the Dodecanese Islands, which was on my bucket list.
When we started planning the charter, the first person I contacted was Bob Miller, the San Luis Rey Sail & Power Squadron educational officer. He and his wife, Sharlene, loved the idea and signed up, along with their friends and former squadron members Neil and Renee Scheuerlein. Eudes and Beth Lopes from Brazil and Werner Rech from Germany rounded out the group.
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