Dedicated Depth display, NMEA 2000 the best way?

30 Jul


“Traditional depth sounders” by Bill Morris at Ocean Navigator

I enjoyed this Bill Morris article at even though he pokes fun at skippers like me. For one thing, he does it gently and well, as in this smoothly written second paragraph:

However, sailors who depend on paper charts and minimal electronics — VHF radio, hand-held GPS and a stand-alone depth sounder — are still making successful ocean passages, blissfully innocent of the compulsion, or ability, to spend big bucks on more elaborate systems.

I also agree with Bill that a dedicated depth display is a key navigation tool, ...

Read More

DETH CRUZ 2019: To Matinicus With Matinicus

30 Jul

First some deep background: the term “death cruise” was coined during the 1980s to describe a series of outings under sail enjoyed by the editorial staff of Offshore, a now defunct New England boating magazine. Said staff at the time consisted of three people: myself (managing editor), Michael Csenger (assistant editor), and Marc Thibodeau (proofreader). The first cruise was actually a delivery, undertaken for an advertiser, and involved a very unreliable engine (dirty fuel, mostly), hence the dark moniker. The last took place in May 1990. I remember I blew off my law school graduation to attend. (Obviously, by ...

Read More

Nuuk’s Most Striking Feature

27 Jul

July 25, 2019

It feels like a place perched at the edge of the earth. Here snow-capped mountains rise right from the water’s edge and granitic rock lines the port. Small fishing boats come and go as long as there is light–and at this time of year, there is always light–while the load of ship-sized trawlers is craned into the humming fish plant. From Mo’s cockpit, I am overwhelmed by the smells of fish and the tar used to keep the antique fleet afloat, all of which are suggestive of a frontier town.

Once beyond the harbor, however, Nuuk’s most ...

Read More

Monitored boats, connected boats and smart boats, what does it all mean?

27 Jul

Siren Marine, Boat Command, Nautic-On and BoatFix's apps

Siren Marine, Boat Command, Nautic-On and BoatFix’s apps

If you’ve been reading Panbo, boating magazines, or spent any time at a boat show you’ve likely seen boat monitors, connected boat products and smart boat products. But, you may well not know what these things are or how they’re different from each other. Hopefully, I can help shed some clarity on this latest collection of buzzwords.

Many people get into boating as a way of relaxing, but, as most boaters find out sooner-or-later, when things break on your boat it can be anything but relaxing. Nothing will ruin a weekend faster ...

Read More

ICW Caution Areas July 2019

25 Jul

A cruise down the ICW is relatively easy to navigate.  There are some sections which have historically been  shallow and prone to shifting with constantly changing channels. This list covers many of the known problem stretches.  With up to date Navionics charts and with Aqua Map Master cruisers have available better charts and better information than ever before.  The following list covers includes some recently dredged areas which are already  shoaling in.  You can take time to mark  your charts  now so that you will have advanced notice  of these areas when you plot your daily route this fall.  If  ...

Read More

Comes Greenland Out of Fog

24 Jul

July 23, 2019/Day 250

Noon Position: 64 10N  51 44W (Nuuk, final approach)

Course(t)/Speed(kts): N 6

Wind(t/tws): N 15

Miles since departure: 32,845

Leg Newfoundland to NuukDay: 7

Miles: 1026

My timing wasn’t perfect.

By 11pm, we were just a few miles off shore, and while there was light enough to see, and would be the night through, the fog continued thick. My intended route into Nuuk, the Narssaq Lob, had two passes that appeared tight. I was tired. At ten miles out, I switched off the engine and hit the bunk. Mo drifted in undifferentiated gray.

By 3:45am...

Read More

Navionics Boating app AIS feature, great idea but…

24 Jul


AIS feature announcement at

Well, dang, I was steeled up to write an unusually negative entry about the AIS feature that Navionics recently added to its Boating app, but then I learned that they’re already planning virtually all the improvements that I intended to vigorously champion. So, if you too are having trouble making the WiFi connection work — or if you too are disappointed with the resulting target display — don’t worry; apparently, we just have to wait for future versions.

In the meantime, however, let’s discuss how boat data over WiFi can and should work, and ...

Read More

Mo’s Range Under Power

23 Jul

July 21, 2019/Day 249

Miles since departure: 32,744

Leg Newfoundland to Nuuk/Day: 6


Briefly today the sun came out and warmed my back as I stood in the cockpit admiring my domain, which was otherwise gray and flat as a pancake. Fulmars bombed around the boat in threes and fives; occasionally a skua passed by at mast top; once we cut through a school of dolphins spread out over a quarter mile. Otherwise it’s been nothing but slate gray sky and a gray mirror for water.

At noon I pointed Mo NE toward Nuuk. We’ve climbed as much as ...

Read More

DEAD GUY: Jeremy “Mac” McGeary

23 Jul

I’m just back from a cruise down the coast (of which more later) and during said cruise received the very sad news that yet another old sailing friend has passed on. I first met Mac when he was living with Nim Marsh in Middletown, Rhode Island, back in 1993. He was lying low back in those days, tinkering with a brilliant invention for removing grease from homemade soup as you cooked it. This being one of many hats he wore through a varied life. Others included yacht designer, boatwright, magazine editor, writer, and probably a few others I never knew ...

Read More

Immersion Suit Try-On

22 Jul

July 20, 2019/Day 248

Noon Position: 60 20N  52 03W

Course(t)/Speed(kts): NxW 6+

Miles since departure: 32,597

Leg Newfoundland to Nuuk/Day: 5

Our sweet wind finally departed this life mid morning. It had held on bravely overnight, if with signs of weakness, but by the second cup of coffee, Mo was cycling between two and four knots.

By the time I started the engine, the water was glassy. Our wind had died.

The sea has been glassy all day.

I’ve changed course and am heading NNW whereas Nuuk is due N. This is because what wind there is along the ...

Read More

More from the AIM Marine Group