Amazing Black and White Underwater Images

5 Nov

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Speckled Moray Eel, New Zealand (above)

These images come from cruising friend Jessica Rousseau, who has this to say about them:

“This selection of underwater images was taken in several different locations: Caribbean, New Zealand, Fiji, Mexico and South Minerva reef, (an atoll between NZ and Fiji). I chose to use black and white as an experiment to see if the impact of the underwater world was any less without its myriad colours. I found that monochrome allows you to experience an image with more feeling because of not being bombarded with an array of vivid colours. When viewing something ...

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THE BOY, ME AND THE CAT: Cruising South Down the ICW (Before There Was an ICW)

4 Nov

Plummer illo

These days voyaging south down the U.S. East Coast via the Intracoastal Waterway is so commonplace as to be cliché. Literally thousands of cruisers now make the pilgrimage annually. Calling themselves “snowbirds,” they ply the murky waters of the ICW in all manner of vessels, both power and sail, and pride themselves on the tobacco-colored bow stains that denote multiple annual transits.
But back in the early 20th century, when long-distance cruising was still in its infancy, taking a boat all the way from New England to Florida was a challenging proposition. One of the first to take up the ...

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Charles Darwin Goes Cruising in Finches, Fossils, and Fuegians

2 Nov

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A young man was invited to go cruising for a few years. His family, his father especially, thought he would be throwing his education away, not to mention risking his life. Sound familiar, cruisers? In the face of such disapproval the young man decided not to go, but a favorite uncle interceded on his behalf. The favorite uncle was Josiah Wedgewood, of the Wedgewood pottery, the young man was Charles Darwin, and his cruise on the Beagle was probably history’s most important voyage of scientific discovery.

When we think of Darwin, we think of a man who looks like this:...

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59 Degrees North Podcast: Episode 8, Joe Elder

31 Oct

Joe Elder and his wife Alison own and run Skipjack Nautical in Portsmouth, VA. it’s one of the few places like it in the USA – a treasure trove of nautical artifacts and artwork stretched throughout a beautiful gallery overlookin the Elizabeth River in Portsmouth. Joe and I talked about how he got involved starting the business, his career as a professional diver and underwater archaeologist, how he and Alison lost it all at the original Skipjack due to a catastrophic fire and Joe’s passion for history and all things nautical. We chatted in the back of Skipjack at a ...

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59 Degrees North Podcast #7: Donald Street

26 Oct

The LEGENDARY Donald Street in person! I first met Don at the Annapolis Sailboat Show in 2010 when Mia and I had Arcturus on display with Colligo Marine. Don gave me some pointers on the yawl rig, and we hit it off right from the start. He’s been the biggest influence on my sailing life since I started reading his books as a kid. Don and I sat down in the small apartment above the Weems & Plath shop in Eastport last week and chatted for almost an hour and a half about his sailing history, his chartwork, his philosophies ...

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DEADBEAT FRENCH CRUISERS: Primadonna in Oriental

26 Oct

Primadonna at anchor

Ever since the days of Bernard Moitessier, it has been a tired cliche that French liveaboard cruisers are dumpster-diving freeloaders who have no respect for authority and believe the world owes them a living. I have met many French cruisers in my day, some of whom have poked fun at this cliche, but I’ve never met any who actually lived up to it. But then I’ve never met Pascal Ott and Monique Christmann, who have been living aboard their red steel ketch Primadonna in Oriental, North Carolina, for over a year now, though I have been reading about them ...

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59 Degrees North Podcast #6: Christian Kull

18 Oct

Mia and I met Christian in the Aland Islands this past summer. Christian and his wife Annette run the guest harbor at Rodhamn, a beautiful, small island about 10 miles south of Mariehamn, the capital of Aland. The island has some pretty interesting history, having served as the radio station during the wars. The old station remains as a museum, and in the summertime, Christian and Annette actually like in what was the station-keepers house! They keep their boat there as well, an OE-32, designed by the famous Olle Enderlein (of which we saw countless designs while sailing in Sweden). ...

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Dirk Kramers on Nova

15 Oct

America’s Cup racing rang enough bells to become part of the Nova program, Making Things Fast, that runs Wednesday evening, October 16, on PBS. Dirk Kramers, engineer and design executive for Oracle Team USA, is the go-to guy for David Pogue as Nova explores the techniques and implications of moving humans and machines ever faster. Pogue asks, “Is it possible to go too fast? Have we hit a point where innovation outpaces our ability to keep up?”

DirkKramers-300x199Recognizing an opportunity for a conversation with Dirk, I interrupted his packing up post-America’s Cup 34—goodbye, Tiburon CA, hello Newport RI and ...

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59 Degrees North Podcast #5: Jim Carrier

9 Oct

Jim Carrier is a contributing editor for Cruising World magazine, and a fellow Allied Seabreeze owner! His boat, a yawl like Arcturus, is called Ranger. Jim sailed it across the Atlantic with ARC Europe several years back, and his experience with the boat on that long ocean passage convinced Andy & Mia to buy their Seabreeze. Andy and Jim discuss sailing the Seabreeze and Jim’s career as a writer. He’s done far more than just sailing journalism, writing newspaper columns, advocating for Civil Rights in Alabama and writing about Hurricane Katrina. Check him out on – he’s among ...

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HANS KLAAR: Ontong Java II Video

9 Oct

Speaking of Gambia, here’s a very cool time-lapse viddy documenting the construction there during 2012 of Han Klaar‘s new crab-claw-rigged double-canoe Ontong Java II (a.k.a, OJ II). Hans is out and about cruising the planet aboard this intriguing vessel and is looking for pay-to-play crew to join the adventure. Check here for info on how to do that.

I’m posting this in rush, as I’m flying to Annapolis today for the annual show.

Hope to see some of you down there!...

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