Sailfeed
May 14th
Local hunting conch in Bimini…

At anchor here in Bimini, after an uneventful crossing. The arrival, now that had some drama!
About seven miles out, I decided to put in the North Bahamas chart chip so that, you know, I would be able to see the channel clearly and enter without any problems.
Now where did I put that silly little chip? It’s always in the nav table. Always – well, except for now, when I need it. Seems that when I sold the old chartplotter, I left that chip in it. Darn. Someone got a deal there.
Fortunately, I’ve got my paper charts…
In any event, the entry to Bimini is very easy and well marked, especially now that the casino is here – can’t be having the guests roll the dice before getting to the tables, can we?…

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May 10th

Cuba Bound!

Posted by // May 10, 2015 // COMMENT (0 Comments)

Boats and Gear, Cruising, Maintenance, Miscellany, People, Racing, Techniques, Uncategorized

A quick post, as I’m getting the boat ready for travel…

At last – the stars have aligned and it’s off to Bimini after far, far too long in Miami. From Bimini, it’s then over to Chub Key – or possibly Andros and then over to the Exumas. I’ll be avoiding Nassau like the plague – far too many murders there recently, including several on boats (see story here). Besides, why go to an island paradise and spend time in a city? I want beaches, sun, sand and rum!
From there, it will be on to the Exumas. This trip, I want to visit the northern Exumas, I’ve missed them in past years.…

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April 28th

Just in from Scott Berg of the SSCA – the Florida Legislature has adjourned three days early. This ends the current round of fighting to preserve anchoring rights in the state of Florida. In other words, we won. Our rights to anchor in that state have been preserved…for now.
Best of all, I won’t have to write (and you won’t have to read!) again about this issue for another six months.
Special congratulations to everyone! I hesitate to mention names because I’ll be sure to miss some, and there are some who deserve mention who don’t want me to mention them, or whose place was on the quiet side of this fight and who can’t be mentioned.…

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February 2nd
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Seeing the mountains of Cuba, especially after leaving the flat and featureless Bahamas, is exciting. You know it’s going to be different, but just how different you don’t know. Equal parts of fear and anticipation, hesitancy and expectation, jitter about in your mind. It’s not at all like entering any other country.

As you approach, and generally somewhere about 9 or 10 miles out, the Cuban Guarda Frontera (coast guard) contacts you via VHF with a request you identify yourself and your intentions. This is it. You’re heading in and your entire cruising experience is about to be changed.

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ooops…..

My first visit I entered at Puerto de Vita after a 65 nm crossing from Ragged Island in the Bahamas.…

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January 17th
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The net is just buzzing with talk about Cuba since the release yesterday (Jan 16, 2015) of the new US regulations regarding the embargo. Everyone wants to go to Cuba – nothing new there – but just what do the new regulations actually say? That’s the real question, and it’s not being properly answered by most of the people discussing it.
For those of a legal bent, I’m going to include links to the new regs at the end of this article, so you can nitpick to your heart’s content. For the rest of us, it’ll be a bit more ad hoc.…

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January 14th
North channel

I’m a new face here on Sailfeed, but certainly not a new face to SAIL Magazine readers, as I’ve been writing for SAIL for nearly ten years. Nonetheless, I’m very excited about being able to speak with you here on Sailfeed, and I look forward to many conversations with you. First though, a bit of an introduction, to me, and to what to expect from me here.

I’m a full time cruiser living the dream, (and let’s be honest, occasionally it’s a nightmare!), out of Lake Huron’s Georgian Bay – truly some of the world’s best cruising grounds along with the North Channel of Lake Huron.…

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January 12th

The Great Escape

Posted by // January 12, 2015 // COMMENT (0 Comments)

Cruising, Miscellany

cruisAs yet another year draws to a close I am reminded once again of what a great sport, pastime, call it what you will, we sailors enjoy. A late fall delivery from Bermuda to the Caribbean proved the perfect antidote to the continuing gloom that dominated the airwaves last year; I found there’s nothing like a bracing beat into 25-knot headwinds and a rambunctious seaway to banish thoughts of Ebola-infected ISIS militants swarming across the border to behead us in our sleep. Politics, fracking, climate change, none of these meant anything compared to the struggle of merely climbing out of your bunk at change of watch and the bleak contemplation of more of the same as the wind remained resolutely in the south.…

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January 12th

Tradition for the fun of it

Posted by // January 12, 2015 // COMMENT (7 Comments)

Cruising, Miscellany,

20121026021041
It was just a little tickle on my neck, but something made me give it a flick instead of a scratch. Good thing, too, because instead of aggravating the little scorpion that perched there I knocked it to the cabin sole- and I ended up with a nip instead of a serious injury.

The little brown scorpion had jumped from a large stem of bananas (200+ bananas!) that I was cleaning and cutting into hands, the gift of a generous family back in Panapompom Island. It all worked out, but how could we have avoided a scorpion in the first place?…

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October 21st

It’s been a while since I’ve written anything solely for myself, let alone by hand. Feels strange to put pencil to paper, and awkwardly slow. My brain thinks these sentences faster than my hand can scrawl them down. On the computer, my typing can keep up. Still, somehow this feels better.

I ran my first ultramarathon on Sunday, October 5 over at Blue Marsh Lake, about 5 minutes from my dad’s house, the house I grew up in, outside Reading. The ‘Blues Cruise Ultra 50K’ put on by the Pagoda Pacers Athletic Club.

Saturday night had been later and involved more red wine that I’d have preferred.…

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October 18th

So Long, Drydock 1

Posted by // October 18, 2014 // COMMENT (0 Comments)

Miscellany, ,

KenWatson-MarineTrraffic

Posted October 15

There’s nothing new about seeing odd ships at Pier 50, on San Francisco’s southeastern waterfront. But this weekend, if you see one that’s sinking, it isn’t. The M/V Tern has come for our drydock.

Ken Watson’s pic, above, shows the Tern in a different place, on a different mission. The word from Coast Guard Public Affairs:

San FRANCISCO — The Coast Guard is enforcing a safety zone Saturday morning for the motor vessel Tern, a 590-foot vessel, that will transport the Port of San Francisco’s Drydock 1 to a green certified ship recycling facility near Shanghai, China.…

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