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11/21/2017 13:00 feeds.feedburner.com
New in safety: Exposure OLAS Float-On, Vesper smartAIS deckWatch, and Digital Yacht Nomad portable AIS
Written for Panbo by Ben Ellison
The Exposure OLAS Float-On is one hell of a flashlight (or "torch" in Brit speak). That's because it's also an automatic water-activated MOB strobe light and a Bluetooth MOB alerting device that can network with smartphone apps and more familiarly styled MOB tags. Details follow, along with several other interesting new safety products that also got the attention of the DAME Award judges at METS...
11/21/2017 02:23 www.youtube.com
11/20/2017 18:00 www.northernrangeradventures.com
The Cubar has Ended... let the Holiday begin!
Cubar is over.. officially… We arrived in Costa Baja with holas and waves from our friends on the outside dock but no other fanfare.. it was like coming home! Our new slip assignment is right beside our old one, but this time there is a boat right next to us. He has told us he is more nervous than we are… I think he’s a new boater. Hopefully no one will hit anyone coming in or out, but there is no chance of a larger slip so hopefully everyone learns how to come in and out with no accidents! W...
San Jose del Cabo to Muertos
November 17, 18 Yesterday was our day to explore the town. We had planned to combine it with reprovisioning, but the captain reminded us that we have Monday to do that in La Paz, and it would be more fun to toddle around town and have a nice lunch somewhere than to come and go with bags of groceries - and we had to agree he was right. So we finished our coffees, while the dock boy washed the boat ( hooray hooray!) and then we caught a taxi into town. Some of the fleet was going to Flora Farms ...
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11/19/2017 18:00 www.northernrangeradventures.com
Mag Bay to San Jose del Cabo
This morning we arose to fog so thick you could hardly see the bow of the boat. The decks were dripping, and walking outside covered you in a fine mist as if you were on the moors in Scotland. Not that I have ever been to the moors of Scotland but I have read Jane Eyre and all those novels so I can imagine. We could not see a single boat around us - it was pretty soupy. I opted for a bit of a bigger breakfast, and as the boat was made right and ready for departure by the captain, we cooked e...
Mag Bay Adventures
Mag Bay! We had a great run down from Turtle Bay, a much different experience from 2015. The seas were relatively benevolent, we stayed with the group, fishing was great .. for everyone else! But I was able to have the line in the water a lot, which always makes me happy. The overnight was good, worked out well with no glitches. Sunsets and sunrises as usual are the best time for being on watch because they are so beautiful! We had a lot of dolphins playing alongside us day and night. They...
11/19/2017 08:26 mvdirona.com
Following an early-morning departure from the Orkney Islands, we rode the current south to Cromary Firth and found ourselves in an oil rig graveyard. With oil prices declining over the past few years, many North Sea oil companies have reduced production and towed some rigs to the protected harbor at Cromarty Firth. Some have a...
11/17/2017 11:31 mvdirona.com
St. Margaret’s Hope
St. Margaret’s Hope is the terminus for the fast ferry Pentalina between mainland Scotland and the Orkney Islands. The bay also is an excellent anchorage, with plenty of swing room, good wind protection and convenient bus access to the towns of Kirkwall and Stromness. We very much enjoyed the anchorage, especially after the ordeal of...
11/17/2017 01:29 www.youtube.com
As Mexican as it gets on the coast of Africa!! - Sailing Vessel Delos Ep. 147
11/16/2017 18:00 www.northernrangeradventures.com
11/11/17 Turtle Bay Activities Once again we have slept in - the steady slow low rolling of the swells coming into the bay has worked its magic and kept us asleep long past our usual wake-up time. Yesterday we had a lovely day, just puttering on the boat and then Val and I went kayaking with Laurie from Tanglewood, explored the bay, visited with other boats, and enjoyed the sun. Varnebank decided to throw a cocktail party and invite everyone to come over in the afternoon for appies and drink...
Ensenada to Turtle Bay
First overnight under out belt, and I would say it was a success- in other words, we are still here, heading in the right direction, and there are other Cubaristas around us. So much better than the last time we did this! If memory serves, rounding this island last time in the middle of the night was done during an electrical storm, high winds, and lumpy bumpy seas. So much more civilized this time! touch wood! don’t want to jinx anything… The first leg of our trip yesterday was incredibly c...
11/16/2017 03:46 mvdirona.com
Stromness, on Mainland in the Orkney Islands, was once a major provisioning stop for Hudson’s Bay Company (HBC) ships heading to and from Canada, and a major source of labour for the company. By the late eighteenth century, three quarters of the HBC’s Canadian workforce were from the Orkney Islands. The town has real character,...
11/15/2017 18:00 www.northernrangeradventures.com
First leg, Cubar 2017
Arrival in Ensenada… well, that was fun! Some fish, some lightening, and as we arrived and wandered up to check in to Mexico, some kind of rain! It was a good trip, the gang left in a rather staggered fashion - the weather started out really fine, cloudy but not windy and not rough. We travelled alongside our sistership Plamore, which was excellent as I had a chance to see what we look like travelling across the water- pretty darn fine, I might say! As we came into Hotel Coral harbour, Jame...
11/14/2017 23:59 www.youtube.com
Working remotely while Sailing with Saltbreaker - Interview With a Cruiser - Sailing Vessel Delos
11/14/2017 04:05 mvdirona.com
The Heart of Neolithic Orkney UNESCO World Heritage Site consists of four prehistoric monuments dating to some 5,000 years ago. They include the ancient settlement of Skara Brae, the Maeshowe chambered tomb, and two ceremonial stone circles: the Standing Stones of Stenness and the Ring of Brodgar. After freeing our ensnarled anchor at Widewall Bay,...
11/13/2017 21:30 feeds.feedburner.com
AIS issues: Garmin, Navico, McMurdo, AMEC and SRT
Written for Panbo by Ben Ellison
I like to write about marine electronics that facilitate safer, more enjoyable boating, especially new developments that seem headed in that direction. It's been gratifying, for instance, to see the infant Class B AIS that Panbo began covering in 2005 grow into a highly appreciated tool for cruisers, racers and fishermen. AIS is a huge success on many levels, but today the subject is two issues that may concern some Class B AIS users...
11/11/2017 11:32 feeds.feedburner.com
South To Beaufort, NC
It's a cold morning in Beaufort. The wind is brisk and out of the North, conditions we've not felt since leaving Memphis last winter. We actually broke out the jeans, sweatshirts, down jackets, and—oh my god—socks.
For the last couple of days it's been rainy too. We've mentally kicked ourselves for not going with the original plan of spending one night and continuing on South.
On the other hand, after a few hours here, it quickly became apparent that Beaufort's a bonafide boaty little town, a good hang, it would be shame to not get to know it - as usual we caved to impulse. Glad we did.
The first 2 days of our stay the weather was perfect. 72º and sunny
The walk from the marina to downtown is through a picturesque little historic neighborhood. Only about 3 blocks and you're on Front Street with all the waterfront shops and restaurants. Our first walkabout took us to Spouter Inn where lunch was excellent, but after asking around we discovered the Beaufort Cafe. A local favorite.
11/10/2017 01:29 www.youtube.com
Chillin' with 10,000 penguins, seals and dolphins!! Sailing Vessel Delos Ep. 146
11/6/2017 18:00 www.pendanablog.com
What a Surprise!
Well, well, well what a complete and total surprise! Before deciding on which marina to stay in when we arrived in Ensenada, I decided to put the question to the Nordhavn Owners Group to get a little feedback. The majority of folks suggested Hotel Coral & Marina with the balance opting for the marina downtown in the thick of the action called “Cruiseport”. One thing that virtually all who responded indicated was that Ensenada is a small town. Head south! Hell, what are we in for? One can ...
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11/6/2017 09:00 feeds.feedburner.com
Garmin & Navionics part 2, a close look at ActiveCaptain the app
Written for Panbo by Ben Ellison
It's odd that I was writing about the Navionics Boating app's excellence at MFD integration when Garmin purchased the company and downright weird that the acquisition news arrived via a beta version of the brand new Garmin ActiveCaptain app that takes MFD integration to some other excellent places. For instance, have you ever seen phone notifications pop up on your helm screen while you're underway (if you choose)? The two apps are good news for lots of boaters as they are right now, but what fun to think of all their key features made into one...
11/5/2017 20:13 mv-ghostrider.blogspot.com
November 2017: Back to Fort Myers
LATE OCTOBER / EARLY NOVEMBER UPDATE
While we were waiting out yet another tropical system (Phillipe) at Old Port Cove in North Palm Beach, we used that time to solve the remaining major maintenance concerns.
Another Damned Tropical Storm (Phillipe)
The LinkPro battery monitor issue turned out to be related mostly to an automatic charging relay (ACR) that was installed by a previous owner when the backup battery charger was also added. There are actually two ACRs – one for the wing & generator start battery, and a second for the two main engine start batts; it appears the former is wired in a fashion that confuses the LinkPro gauge calculus….so Rick disconnected that. We still have the old fashioned manual parallel switches (which we prefer anyway) so no real functionality is lost. Rick also suspects the original charger’s temperature compensation probe is a bit off, so that, too, is disconnected while we test further. But at least we appear to have a solid battery gauge now.
11/5/2017 09:05 mvdirona.com
St. Mary’s Bay
In October of 1939, the German U-boat U-47 crept into Scapa Flow through Kirk Sound and sunk the British battleship Royal Oak. To protect Scapa Flow, Winston Churchill, then First Lord of the Admiralty, ordered the construction of barriers across the eastern side of Scapa Flow. 66,000 locally cast concrete blocks were dropped onto a...
11/3/2017 19:00 www.northernrangeradventures.com
Countdown to CUBAR - three days...
We are still hanging in Chula Vista, which seems like a long way to go to meet the gang as we leave on Tuesday Morning early... but we have been having a local fellow wax our boat and I wouldn't want to make it difficult for him! Other visitors have been Shea the radio guru ( Offshore Outfitters) and the installers for the Emarsat phone system. We have had another glitch thrown at us, as Shea pointed out the spectra line we use for the hoist has almost split and parted from itself up at the top ...
11/3/2017 01:30 www.youtube.com
Gettin' NAKED, SKELETONS and SAND DUNES! Namibia! Sailing Vessel Delos Ep. 145
10/30/2017 11:01 grandbanks39.com
The color of the leaves turning in Autumn are beautiful in the Pacific Northwest. Our crisp night air temperatures drop down to freezing, but when the sun comes out, the reflection of the fall colors on the water is mesmerizing. For Halloween weekend, we took advantage of calm conditions to putz out in Yes Please […]
10/29/2017 22:00 feeds.feedburner.com
Navionics & Garmin part 1, long live Plotter Sync
Written for Panbo by Ben Ellison
Did my planned back-to-back reviews of evolving Navionics and Garmin apps suddenly become moot when the Garmin acquired Navionics on Friday? I don't think so! The terrific Plotter Sync integration I've been experiencing between the Navionics Boating app and multifunction displays from Simrad and Raymarine is not likely to go away anytime soon, if ever, and it may add significantly to your current navigation happiness. Moreover, many Garmin owners are about to receive a wonderful app gift, and while the different advances are not such a competition now, together they suggest the broad harmony between phones, tablets, PCs and MFDs many of us will eventually experience on our boats...
10/29/2017 19:00 www.pendanablog.com
Guest Interview Denis and Mary Umstot - Teka III
So, Denis, tell us a little something about your cruising to date and where you have been so far? We have been cruising for over 35 years starting in the Pacific Northwest when we lived in Gig Harbor, Washington. For the first 15 years we cruised in summer when I did not have to teach at the University of Puget Sound. We mostly visited the coast from Gig Harbor (near Tacoma) to the Broughtons of British Columbia. We started out with a 23’ Tiderunner full displacement cabin cruiser with a sm...
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10/29/2017 05:22 mvdirona.com
Managing Fuel Quality
When we left Seattle on our trip around the world, we were expecting fuel quality issues to be common and carried 48 Racor 900 fuel filters. Surprisingly, we used less than ten on the entire trip. Most of the fuel we got world-wide was surprisingly good. We did encounter some minor fuel quality issues, but...
10/29/2017 04:57 mvdirona.com
Scapa Flow Museum
Scapa Flow, a large bay in the center of the Orkney Islands, was the base for the British Fleet during the two World Wars. The former Royal Navy base at Lyness now is the Scapa Flow Visitor Center and Museum, covering the history of the area and it’s use as a naval base, plus lots...
10/28/2017 03:01 mvdirona.com
The RNLI (Royal National Lifeboat Institution) is an amazing life-saving group. They are supported by donations, and most of those out there risking their lives in maritime rescues are volunteers. The RNLI serves the UK and Ireland, and operates in some very difficult sea conditions. The Longhope RNLI station on Hoy Island in the Orkney...
10/27/2017 14:00 feeds.feedburner.com
GREECE AND TURKEY'S WAR OF WORDS
Envoy is now in Lefkas Marina for the winter and we're home in Auckland for the southern hemisphere summer.
Turkey and Greece have fought each other for centuries and during the period of 400 hundred years or so when Turkey occupied large parts of Greece they ruthlessly suppressed any resistance.
Cyprus is still divided into the southern Greek section and northern Turkish section and Greek ownership of some Aegean Islands close to the Turkish coast is being disputed by Turkey.
A more recent contentious issue is that Greece provided political asylum to some fleeing Turkish general after the attempted coup.
Currently there is a decline in western tourists going to Turkey because of perceived security threats. Because less charter boat customers are now going to Turkey, some Turkish charter boats, known as gulets have been chartering in Greece. Recently Greek coastguard have been investigating Turkish charter yachts visiting Greek islands without completing official procedures to o...
10/27/2017 00:59 www.youtube.com
Love Drops 'n Diamonds! Sailing Vessel Delos Ep. 144
10/25/2017 06:39 mvdirona.com
Orkney Islands Arrival
The currents around the Orkney Islands are among the swiftest in Great Britain. Currents in the Pentland Firth separating the islands from mainland Scotland can reach nine knots on spring tides and powerful tide rips form on the west-bound current, particularly in an opposing wind. We had lovely, calm conditions on our overnight run from...
10/25/2017 00:59 www.youtube.com
Trends in Modern Yacht Design- Interview with a Naval Architect- Sailing Vessel Delos
10/22/2017 04:48 feeds.feedburner.com
Saying Bye To The Bay
We've had a great time on The Chesapeake this year and we're somewhat sad to say it's time to head South. Though on this day, the weather is beautiful and it's forecast to be this way for a while longer, we know cold and colder is inevitable — so...
This year was just a continuation of our normal cruising habits, we carried on by revisiting our favorite places and discovering a few new ones, making new friends while catching up with a few old amigos.
We've really enjoyed connecting with Jenny and Ted, our running buddies aboard Southern Star. Jenny, a Kiwi, gave us Yanks an excellent tour of our nation's capitol and it's history. We're all hoping to cross paths again before they start their long and epic passage back home to New Zealand. Yes, as it ofttimes happens, the last minute decision to ditch plans and run up the Potomac to DC was one of our all time better redirects. A large time was had, a capitol idea. (pun intended)
Mostly good experiences and nothing but great memories.
10/21/2017 19:00 www.oceanzpirit.com
Finally to Vava'u Tonga
Well we’ve been and seen Vava’u and it’s time to put pen to paper. Gosh what a beautiful place Vava’u is. We departed with Colin, Chris and Julie onboard 22 August – 3.5 days to Vava’u so we arrived 26th. I guess the first thing worth mentioning is the conditions (different to what was forecast) were the worst oceaNZpirit and its crew have been through, reaching a hefty 7 metres. In between throwing up down below, I could feel the boat suspended out over the crest of a mighty high wave and the...
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10/20/2017 01:29 www.youtube.com
Back HOME on the OPEN OCEAN! Sailing Vessel Delos - Ep.143
10/19/2017 10:01 mvdirona.com
Historic St. Kilda is on the edge of the edge. Lying 40nm west of the Outer Hebrides, the archipelago has no all-weather anchorage and is exposed to the full force of Atlantic storms. The islands are the first Scottish UNESCO World-Heritage Site and Scotland’s only Natural World Heritage site. The dramatic scenery there is enough...
10/19/2017 09:39 www.youtube.com
Nordhavn video: N75 "Lady Mazie"
10/18/2017 00:59 www.youtube.com
Installing our new Onan 8KW Generator- Full Cut!!! Sailing Vessel Delos
10/17/2017 19:00 www.northernrangeradventures.com
Another Road Trip... and a trip down memory lane....
October 18th - Home again - for a while… We made it - after spending the summer in California and Mexico, the little red truck is now sitting under a slight blanket of snow up here at the lake. After all our concerns about winter coming early to the Pacific Northwest, the drive North was actually quite beautiful. It was incredibly windy at times, (headwind of course) and the leaves were donning their fall colours rather spectacularly further up into Oregon and Washington - but we didn’t hav...
10/17/2017 17:35 feeds.feedburner.com
Smörgåsboat 2: More tasty test electronics southbound on Gizmo
Written for Panbo by Ben Ellison
The jury is still out. Brian Lind may have written a blushingly laudatory profile of Panbo and me for PassageMaker magazine -- and you can now check out "Who is Ben Ellison?" online -- but I agree with regular readers who may rightfully doubt my 'authoritative' 'expertise'! This site is not the "arbitrator of marine electronics" -- no such thing exists -- and evidence is building that I've become a bumbling old boat guy barely in command of all the gear he's installed, plus very darn slow to write about it...
10/16/2017 01:00 www.youtube.com
Behind the scenes with KFM Morning Radio in Cape Town- Sailing Vessel Delos
10/14/2017 19:00 www.pendanablog.com
Pendana llega a México
Our trip to Ensenada was about as good as it gets. The weather was perfect with little to no seas and calm winds. We departed Marina del Rey at 11am and arrived in Ensenada Mexico the following morning at 6:30am just as the sun was casting enough light for safe entry. As always, we arrived at high water on a slack tide which I believe is imperative when entering any new marina. Abi handled the lines like a pro and Cmdr. Claire made the tie up look like a walk in the park. It is amazing ...
10/13/2017 13:22 feeds.feedburner.com
ENVOY HIT BY YACHT DRAGGING ANCHOR DURING STORM
Envoy is now in Lefkas marina for the Greek winter. It's now Friday and next Wednesday we fly home to NZ.
Back to our cruising adventures with Amy.
Amy loves to have dinner by candlelight and we have various candle holders aboard, mostly bought in Turkey.
Early September we're anchored in Sivota with several yachts anchored around us.
As we return to Envoy from dinner ashore we all comment on how perfectly still the air is and how calm the sea is. Talk about the calm before the storm!
At 1230 we're all rudely awoken by huge gusts of wind buffeting Envoy, then thunder, lightning and heavy rain. We all immediately get up and reaching the pilothouse see a Belgian aluminium yacht, Grand Chalem, dragging sideways down onto our bow. There is no time to take any evasive action before her starboard side squarely slams into our stretched-out anchor chain, bounces off, then slides bow first down our starboard side before disappearing into the night.
Other yachts are also dragging their an...
10/13/2017 00:23 www.youtube.com
Season PREMIERE! Girl Crew Invades Delos! Sailing Vessel Delos Ep. 142
10/12/2017 16:19 grandbanks39.com
Props, Paint and Zincs
With Yes Please on the hard, it was time for some serious boat maintenance. The bottom was sanded down and painted with ablative paint, the propellers were removed, cleaned up, balanced and coated with propspeed. The tailshaft from the starboard engine was pulled so the cutlass (strut) bearing could be replaced. During the purchase survey, […]
10/12/2017 04:33 www.southernstarnz.com
Tourists in Washington
https://photos.app.goo.gl/akGGZKxUD7IQEtpe2 https://photos.app.goo.gl/OGTQjQXGp06z0bVt2 We spent 3 nights at anchor en route to Washington DC. The first of these was in an area called Little Choptank which had been recommended to us. It was a nice spot but we found much shallower depths than on any of our charts, and pulled up anchor in only 1.5m of water which is pretty skinny for us. The second day we rounded the mouth of the Potomac and were followed part way by our friends Mel and Bob on...
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10/11/2017 19:00 www.mvtivoli.org
It’s a rainy day at Tidewater Marina in Portsmouth. We are back on Chesapeake Bay after traveling many miles this “season”. Tivoli has performed beautifully. The only issue with the boat since departing from North Palm Beach last May has been a NAIAD stabilizer leak. Of course that started halfway between Bermuda and Nova Scotia and caused some concern. But, it has continued to perform throughout our travels to Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and our return to the States. We will have it repaired shor...
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10/10/2017 01:59 www.youtube.com
360 Video Interior Tour Amel 55- Sailing Vessel Delos
10/10/2017 00:59 www.youtube.com
Sailing an Amel 55 in 360! Sailing Vessel Delos
10/9/2017 21:09 mv-ghostrider.blogspot.com
Mid October 2017: More Boat Business
ANOTHER OCTOBER UPDATE
As we were keeping a careful watch on Hurricane Nate’s path we had some time (and finally some pleasant weather) this past week to focus on a few remaining maintenance and repair items. And as usual those work efforts led to more interesting “discoveries”.
Batt Charger Mounted Directly on the Engine Room Wall
As part of troubleshooting our LinkPro battery monitor mystery we went back to tracing more potential grounding issues; and while James was staring at our second battery charger it suddenly occurred to us the thing had multiple grounds – there was its standard and required grounding post, but it was also screwed directly into the engine room’s metal clad wall. Apparently that’s a no-no in a Nordhavn since that cladding is connected to the boat’s bonding system ground. We rectified that by fashioning a starboard mounting plate to place between the charger and the wall. That does not completely solve the LinkPro issues, but it is one less variable rem...
10/8/2017 14:21 n60blossom.blogspot.com
End of the 2017 Cruising Season
Blossom is all tucked away and prepped for her winter hibernation.
We went up to Baltimore last week to finish up a few tasks that we hadn’t had time to finish with our quick departure in September. It was beautiful in Maryland, with fall creeping around the corner, the temps dropping and leaves starting to hint at the colors to come.
We ended up finishing our work much more quickly than we’d expected and welcomed having some down time. This was especially true as we experienced yet another “boater’s small world surprise” and were able to meet up with old and new friends on our last night there. The back story: we had stopped by a fellow Nordy early this summer and said hello to Gary & Tina who were heading north for the summer. Other friends of ours, Tammy & Tom, recently left land life on the west coast and were cruising New England on their catamaran this summer. It seems the two were moored next to each other in Annapolis last week and got to chatting and realized they both knew ...
10/8/2017 09:17 feeds.feedburner.com
Waking early and going up top to put together a cup of coffee, I take a look out the window and see the winds have indeed stopped blowing. The cool temp and warm water has coalesced to paint this image of a foggy morning inside Solomons Island Harbor.
During our last couple of days at Solomons, we put together a loose plan to run down to Deltaville then on to York River to hang for a couple of weeks. Eventually, we'd motor to Atlantic Yacht Basin where we'd officially put an end to the Bay and have a bit of work done before starting our return South.
With that idea in mind, we left and made way out to the Bay. It was another nice soft day and the forecasts predicted the weather to hold for a week.
We'd been running for a few hours when the radio crackled and a friendly Kiwi accent was heard, it was Southern Star.
We asked about their time at Trawlerfest and they asked about our plans and told us they were about to turn and head up the Potomac to spend a few a days in Washington, D.C...
10/8/2017 03:50 www.youtube.com
Preparing Dirona for the North Atlantic Crossing
10/6/2017 00:59 www.youtube.com
Season Finale MEGASODE!! 88 days of Summer in Cape Town- Sailing Vessel Delos Ep. 141
10/5/2017 03:26 www.southernstarnz.com
Back to School; Attending Trawler Fest
https://photos.app.goo.gl/CvyFYAWDRcc71dA23 After our three weeks of maintenance at Washburns Boat Yard, we headed further north to Kent Island, just across the Bay from Annapolis for Trawler Fest, held at Bridge Marina, Kent Island, MD. We could not get slip space at the Bridge Marina, but we found reasonable rates at the Marina off of Kent Narrows (Piney Narrows Yacht Club), across Kent Island. We broke the journey from Solomons MD (Washburns) to Kent Narrows, with a nice overnight at the ...
10/4/2017 11:04 www.youtube.com
Nordhavn video: N60 "Chopin"
10/4/2017 01:00 www.youtube.com
Interview - Cruising Technology changes a lot in 50 years! (2 of 6) - Sailing Vessel Delos
Interview - Cap'n Fatty and Caroline Goodlander 50 years at sea! (1 of 6) - Sailing Vessel Delos
10/3/2017 17:15 mv-ghostrider.blogspot.com
October 2017: Trying to Reason with Hurricane Season
Nuts. It’s October and we are still at Old Port Cove Marina. And it is still hurricane season. Just as we were thinking we had the boat nearly ready to cruise and would also see a break in the weather, neither has turned out to be true.
No Sense in Heading North Given This Model Plot
As for the “boat stuff”, we still appear to have a too-warm stuffing box that requires more attention and sea trialing, and we have not yet figured out the LinkPro (battery monitor) accuracy issue. The water seepage at the front of the engine room is also still under investigation – although that does not appear to be originating with the main engine’s raw water cooling loop as previously thought. That’s good, but more sleuthing is required.
As for the weather, Invest 99 set up over Florida this past weekend, with the east coast forecast going downhill for the coming week. And the NWS began expressing concerns about tropical development closer to home (Caribbean) after all that passe...
10/3/2017 07:52 www.northernrangeradventures.com
In all this sadness, being able to concentrate on something positive is a huge help . While the world appears to be shredding itself into smithereens, and the potential for evil seems to lurk around every corner, “time spent simply messing about in boats” is a soothing and soul-satisfying pastime. We don’t get a paper delivered to the back deck, we don’t have Satellite TV to give us an opportunity to sit glued to CNN watching the ugly reality of our world unfold - quick bites on the cell phone...
10/2/2017 10:00 www.pendanablog.com
Pendana Still Loving LA!
**NEWS FLASH** Some very sad news recently with the loss of MV Adventure in the Philippines. I have just spoken with her owner who said, “I'm still a little 'shell-shocked' over the news. I'm currently touring around with my wife in our motor home in USA. We are on the way from Florida to Yellowstone when I heard the news. My boat is in Cebu, Philippines. We've had it based there for the past 5 years using it to cruise around Asia”. So sad I can’t imagine what that would be like being so far f...
10/1/2017 13:16 n60blossom.blogspot.com
Irma and a Change of Plans
Once again, I’m very behind on our blog. Well, our cruising season ending up taking a bit of a detour this year! Here’s the scoop:
We returned the end of August from a (Fabulous!) vacation in Bordeaux, France. We stayed with friends aboard their boat and had the most amazing time...
The water mirror in Bordeaux
Boats in Bordeaux (that's the color of the water - solid silt!)
Wine school and workshops...
Yes, even cheese classes!
Voyaging down the Garonne. Talk about current and silt!
The French seaside village of Royan
A brief tour de Paris
As soon as we got back there was talk of Irma. We did a bit of sightseeing, like visiting the National Air and Space Museum in DC (which was amazing!!).
Blackbird and the Space Shuttle Discovery in the background, pretty darn cool
We decided, however, to stay in port as we watched her track and tried to make the best decisions as to what to do. It’s not an easy task when you don’t really know where it’s going to go until you’re abou...
10/1/2017 06:22 feeds.feedburner.com
Herrington Harbour North - Tracys Landing
Just a quick hop across the Bay, the run to Tracys Landing and Herrington Harbour North was an easy one. On our way, there was hardly a breath of wind, the Bay was flat and the sky was clear. We were in no hurry so we saved some fuel and took our time crossing ... a good day.
Being here on marina business, the staff gave us a nice T-Head slip with a clear view of the harbor's entrance. After tying up and shutting down we walked the boys and familiarized ourselves with this huge marina.
At first glance, Herrington Harbour North appeared to be a nice clean marina with old fixed docks and a boat yard; after spending some time there we soon realized the place is so much more than that.
This little clip was shot with my phone just off the back of the boat. Again, it was worth getting out of bed every morning to see this.
We really didn't do much other than what we came to do, nevertheless HHN is certainly nice place to knock around. We'd been to ...
9/30/2017 03:11 feeds.feedburner.com
ENVOY CRUISES NORTH BACK TO CEPHALONIA
Envoy is now anchored off the Greek mainland at spectacular Mourtos, while the Blog continues at Ormos Keri – the turtle area with our daughter Amy still aboard.
Greece is not a place noted for its health and safety regulations (or indeed for observing any regulations!) and when we land ashore we find the decking of the main jetty has many holes and missing planks. We're surprised as this is the jetty used by tourists to board their hire boats, but never mind – helpful young Greek guys are on hand to help you. When walking along the many makeshift jetties here it's a good idea to place you feet on areas where the thin planks are supported underneath.
With missing planks you need to watch your step
This part is much worse and requires a big stretch
While anchored at Keri a strong offshore wind develops one afternoon. Later we see an inflatable plastic turtle blowing from the beach towards us. We imagine that some poor child is crying over this lost turtle so Amy and I jump in the RH...
9/28/2017 10:14 www.pendanablog.com
Guest Interview - Craig and Marie Mundie – N86 Serendipity
So, Craig, tell us a little something about your cruising to date and where you have been so far? We bought Serendipity in September of 2013. We moved her to La Paz, Mexico for the winter and then brought her up to her home port of Friday Harbor, Washington in April of 2014. We made the trip in two one week sprints, first to Dana Point in early February, and then to Friday Harbor. Since then our cruising has been confined to the Puget Sound and British Columbia. In 2015 we circumnavigated...
9/27/2017 15:56 www.northernrangeradventures.com
Countdown to Cubar - part two...
Update! We are back in the water, the boat still floats although the captain’s wallet is considerably lighter… but that is boating. What you plan for and what actually happens are two different things. Now I understand all those boats out there called “Change Order”. Luckily our shipyard down here in Chula Vista was very good at communicating what they found and what they felt needed to be done. It is hard to have your boat ripped apart and put back together when you cannot be there to observe,...
9/26/2017 12:05 feeds.feedburner.com
IBEX Winners: Lumitec PLI and Power-Pole Vision
Written for Panbo by Ben Ellison
What's amazing and IBEX award worthy about the Lumitec demo board above is that while all those light fixtures are only connected to the same simple two-wire 12v power circuit, each can be switched, dimmed, strobed, color-changed and more, individually or as virtual groups. Lumitec calls the protocol Power Line Instructions (PLI), and, as innovative as it is, it had to share top honors in the electronics category with another new-protocol-based product, and we judges wished we could give out more awards. The boats of the future may be emerging from the fog...
9/26/2017 10:40 grandbanks39.com
On the Hard
With Summer winding down and Autumn right at our doorsteps, its time to put Yes Please on the hard. At dawn on a calm, foggy Monday morning, I motored quietly over to the shipyard and was very pleasantly surprised to find the Travel lift warmed up and ready at 08:00 when I arrived. There was […]
9/25/2017 11:21 www.youtube.com
Nordhavn 76 "Tartaruga"
9/24/2017 12:50 feeds.feedburner.com
Saint Michaels, Maryland
It must be Sunday morning...
Leaving Annapolis and heading for Saint Michaels, the weather was beautiful. It wasn't a sunny postcard day, instead; a muted, desaturated depiction of a day that made for a comfortable cruise and a few interesting photos. Mel and I have always enjoyed running from inside the boat on cloudy misty days; much the same way as our dead of winter boat trips on the Tennessee River, it's kinda like cruising through an old black and white movie.
On this day, the Bay was flat, the winds were light; sunless and foggy, but not uncomfortably so.
Relaxation was our only reason for visiting St Michaels and we certainly accomplished that.
No work on this stopover, just a good time visiting friends and exploring one of our favorite places.
Steve and Jane, long time friends from our days at Sunset Bay in Stuart, have created a beautiful home with views that pan the harbor entrance; so they saw us coming in to tie up. Their thoughtfully renovated house truly looks like a ...
9/24/2017 09:18 www.pendanablog.com
Classic Photos of Our Trip So Far!
This blog is simply a collection of photos of our trip so far. Of the thousands of pics taken these are, I think, some of the best. Stay Safe James...
9/23/2017 07:54 feeds.feedburner.com
ENVOY AMONG THE TURTLES
Envoy is now cruising around Corfu having just returned from nearby Albania.
Amy has left us after a great six weeks together, but the good news is that she's moving back to live in Auckland arriving late November.
We cruise east to anchor in the harbour of Cephalonia's capital – Argostoli. This is a great harbour where you see quite few Loggerhead turtles in the water as it's adjacent to a large breeding and feeding lagoon called Koutavos. Amy had a great experience when a large turtle became interested in our RHIB and it swam close-by giving her great views.
Amy snapped this turtle swimming around our RHIB
In Argostoli I buy a new trolling reel and some new lures as this is the season to catch tuna – watch this space (hopefully!)
Only thing missing is the fish!
Next day we take a rental car to visit the Castle of St George, originally built by Byzantines in the 12thcentury but taken over by Normans, then Turks. The Venetians defeated the Turks in 1500 and took the castle which ...
9/21/2017 09:17 shearmadness72.com
2017-09 Cruising Maine
September 21, 2017 We are continuing to truly enjoy and appreciate our time in Maine. We have had phenomenal summer and fall weather here. For the most part is has been perfect, with temps in the high 60’s to low 70’s during the day and dropping into 40/50’s at night. Winds have been light and […]
9/18/2017 04:12 www.southernstarnz.com
Summer in the Chesapeake- or “Trying to Reason with Hurricane Season”
https://photos.app.goo.gl/X8OVfrsJhuXMFSBV2 We’ve spent the last month and a half or so in two places. We decided to find a nice marina with a GOOD RATE, so that we could do some minor repairs, and have some items shipped to us. York River Yacht Haven Marina, was a great find. Located across the bridge from Yorktown which is steeped in Civil War and the American Revolutionary War history, the marina is only a mile or so from some convenience stores, West Marine, a good sandwich shop. A nice Fo...
9/17/2017 09:52 feeds.feedburner.com
The Hurricane is over, Florida is busy rebuilding itself and quickly coming back to life, our home in Jupiter has returned to 100%, and now, we're back to doing what it is we do. Currently, that's walkabout Annapolis.
Here, The weather's perfect.
We've spent quite a bit of time in Annapolis and we always find it interesting. The Annapolitans are friendly folk. They seem to go out of their way to be kind to strangers. They love their city, boats, good food, and they don't seem to mind sharing all those things. We're grateful, we love all those things as well.
Everywhere you look is a photo that needs to be taken and I've taken quite a few.
The photo to the left is Back Creek. We were tied up at Port Annapolis before moving closer to town and Annapolis Yacht Basin. The Yacht Basin's pricey but worth spending a few bucks for a couple of days in the middle of all things Annapolis
Speaking of Hurricanes, before I forget — this link is to Southeast Cruisers' Net's list of marinas that ...
9/16/2017 20:33 mv-ghostrider.blogspot.com
Mid September 2017: Back to Boat Business
Ghost Rider in the Foreground Approaching the PGA Bridge as We
Move from Loggerhead Marina Back to OPC Marina
What follows is the blog post we were originally composing when all hell broke loose with Hurricane Irma’s stroll up the Florida peninsula. With that melee concluded and with Ghost Rider tucked back into her Yacht Tech slip at Old Port Cove Marina, we can return to our focus on the punch list of remediation / repair / upgrade tasks.
Looking back at what has been accomplished, we’re feeling pretty good about overall progress. We did get the main engine starter replaced (new, not rebuilt) shortly after it died a couple weeks ago. But then the following week the thruster control panel on the fly bridge developed a short that we had to manually bypass for a sea trial just before Irma rudely interrupted our refit task list. And that had to wait until this weekend until all the post-storm movements and restorations had been completed.
As is typical of any punch...
9/12/2017 16:56 mv-ghostrider.blogspot.com
Early September 2017: Hurricane Irma
We are still sticking close to North Palm Beach marinas, although quite honestly we feel we and the boat are ready to start cruising. But, as we had hinted with the last post, the bigger issue has been weather – of the tropical kind.
A Busy Season in Tropical Storms. All This Was After
Harvey Had FUBAR'd Southeast Texas.
As we began writing this post last week, Hurricane Irma had just spooled up to a category 5 storm and seemed to have intentions of plowing through the northern Antilles, the Bahamas, and then into the U.S. coastline. It did all of that and took on Cuba as well. But as we studied its potential paths we simply could not find a direction to sortie that did not put both boat and ourselves in jeopardy – any turn we could take after departing Lake Worth Inlet had a high probability of putting us directly in harm’s way.
OPC Marina Empties Out Followig the Evac Order. That's Ghost Rider
Looking Lonely in the Center of the Pic. The Floating Docks T...
9/12/2017 11:23 feeds.feedburner.com
Day after day of staring at images like the one above, we had moved on, we'd resigned ourselves to and accepted the outcome of the overwhelming probabilities. Pretty much everything we owned in Jupiter, FL was about to be relentlessly swept away by this massive hurricane. Normally, we don't pay much attention to the weather-heads, but this time — just the size of the damn thing was undeniable.
We kept saying things to each other like, "it's just stuff", and "all that really matters is on the boat right now", nonetheless in our hearts and minds, we were controlling the sad thoughts that much of the business that we'd worked hard to build, our little bungalow by the beach, and our world in Jupiter was about to be blown away. Life was about to change.
Irma finally arrives.
Sitting on the boat, on the Chesapeake Bay, enjoying beautiful weather, it was unnerving seeing all this unfold on TV and the net, but as time went on, we started breathing a bit easier after seeing the storm leaving C...
9/11/2017 03:14 feeds.feedburner.com
ENVOY CRUISING AROUND CEPHALONIA
Envoy is now cruising around Meganisi with our daughter Amy aboard.
I meant to include this picture of Di in the Corfu market in an earlier post. Although we've been mostly unsuccessful in our fishing endeavors there is an enormous annual fish catch in the Med of 800,000 tonnes.
Di in Corfu fish and produce market
Fish shops and markets are common place, supplied by an estimated 82,000 commercial fishing boats employing 314,000 people. Virtually every seaside village has its own tiny shallow harbour, generally consisting of a simple rock wall providing some shelter to its fishing boat fleet - mostly boats under 10 metres.
After leaving Lefkas Marina we head south through the canal, initially constructed by Corinthians in the 8thcentury BC. It's always great to visit places for the first time and we anchor in a stunning bay at the island of Nisis Arkoudian. During the day there are five RHIBs anchored but we enjoy the solitude of being the only boat there at night.
From here it's a...
9/10/2017 08:27 feeds.feedburner.com
Solomons Island and Irma
Yep, another beautiful Sunday morning after a somewhat sleepless night.
There's a loss for words when trying to describe the feeling while looking out the salon window. Out there, the reality is the beginning of another beautiful day in Solomons' tranquil little harbor. Meanwhile, at home, in Jupiter, our house is being pounded and our friends, who have stayed put, are confronting Hurricane Irma that's bearing down on South Florida. (See live video of the effects of Irma here: NPBM)
Below, in the video that's streaming from a front window at Spearfish, as I write this, not much is happening. It looks just like last year's Hurricane Mathew that passed by without doing much damage.
Hope it stays that way.
Guilt is certainly not the descriptor that comes to mind, though anxiety is definitely in the mix. Conflicted doesn't seem to fit either.
Is there a word that combines fortunate and grateful? If so, that's it.
And then I turn and look out the salon window again —
Yes, anxious, fo...
9/7/2017 07:19 feeds.feedburner.com
Live Video -S Florida- North Palm Beach/Jupiter/Key west
onSpot wifi Live Video Feed:
North Palm Beach Marina -Power or internet is down for now
The Bluffs Marina - Jupiter, FL
Key West - Power or internet is down for now
online — as long as possible.
The Bluffs Marina - Jupiter, FL
Nordhavn 57-26 Istaboa
9/4/2017 14:55 feeds.feedburner.com
Simarine Pico: Good ideas in battery monitoring & more
Written for Panbo by Ben Ellison
While this boat's main battery bank is at 73% state of charge (SOC) -- a near minimum for the long term health of many battery types -- the lightning icon and blue up-arrow indicate that the charging sources exceed the loads and, in fact, a 100% SOC is expected in 9.5 hours at current rates. The 3.5-inch touchscreen is also displaying time and barometric pressure with trend, and this is just the sleep screen of what seems to be a very modern family of reasonable-cost monitoring products. Say hello to Simarine...
9/3/2017 14:14 feeds.feedburner.com
It's another one of those peaceful Sunday mornings (My favorite way to start a day) quiet, overcast, the view from the salon window is like an old photograph, and so far, other than a few geese, there's not a soul stirring around the harbor.
We're now tied up at Solomons Island, MD - Spring Cove Marina where we're spending a soggy Labor Day Weekend. Though the sun may make an appearance today, it's probably too little too late; a disappointment for those deserving a sunny respite from work. Especially for the marina operators; all prepped to handle the large crowd of boaters who for the most part have canceled reservations.
So far, we're enjoying the bay, we always do. I like motoring to all our favorite towns and marinas while mostly running in deep-ish water — comfortable cruising — unlike the attention demanding shallow windings of the ICW or the long runs offshore with only the occasional ship or pod of dolphin to break the monotony. Mel likes the local restaurants serving good Bl...
9/2/2017 19:00 www.mvtivoli.org
Our lovely vessel Tivoli has safely carried us nearly 14,000 nautical miles from Georgetown in the Exumas to the fjords of Newfoundland. Along the way we’ve found it is often a challenge getting good photographs of our own boat as most of the time one is onboard. As a result we’ve taken more photos of our buddy boat N47 Roam than we have of Tivoli and, likewise, they have taken plenty of photos of Tivoli. We just exchanged our respective collections and we got the better end of the bargain. Clar...
9/2/2017 08:44 www.youtube.com
Dirona through Scotland's Crinan Canal
9/1/2017 17:03 n60blossom.blogspot.com
A beautiful evening at anchor
Look at that shine!
[Once again, I’ve fallen far behind on our blog. This entry is from early August.]
We returned to Blossom the last week of July to find her looking spectacularly shiny and sparkly! We had hired a local detailing company who came very highly recommended to wax and detail Blossom. They were almost finished when we arrived – we flipped her around as soon as we got in so they could finish off the hull. Wow – she’s pretty 😊
We were only back for 12 days but packed a lot of fun into that time. Our friends John & Steve came up from the DC area on Saturday and we had a wonderful time enjoying happy hour on the flybridge and dinner at Sam’s Waterfront. Sunday we played pickle ball and provisioned for the week ahead. We only recently realized the marina will provide a shuttle to where we need to go so we took advantage and did a “heavy provisioning run”. The boat was bursting with wine, beer, juice, laundry detergent…the essentials.
8/31/2017 11:09 grandbanks39.com
Whale, whale, whale, what have we here?
We have had an exceptionally sunny summer in the Pacific Northwest and on a quick trip up to the San Juan Islands we found the Straits of Juan de Fuca so calm that we took a detour over to the Dungeness Spit to do a little exploring. We were rewarded with the the rare sighting […]
8/31/2017 09:40 feeds.feedburner.com
CRUISING IN THE IONIAN SEA
Envoy is now cruising around Zakynthos Island with our daughter Amy aboard.
Before Frank and Marie left us we saw this stunning Maltese cruise ship
When we started our water maker for the first time this season it ran fine but the second time it had some problems. The salinity was high, the fresh water produced seemed warmer than usual and the pump rpm varied by about plus or minus 5 bar. I don't know what it is about water makers but lots of cruisers seem to have issues with them. While in Mandraki Marina technician Angelos made a few checks and cleaned the intake water seacock but it made little difference. We met him a few days later and he installed a new high pressure membrane. This also made no improvement so he removed the main pump to check in his workshop. We're awaiting the result of this and meanwhile having no problems finding plenty of free fresh water from the shore.
Angelos installing a new high pressure membrane
The water maker's main pump
After Frank and Marie dep...
8/30/2017 06:03 www.pendanablog.com
Guest Interview Jeff Sanson - Pacific Yacht Management
So, Jeff, tell us a little something about you and your background in the marine industry? I started my career at age 13 on the sport fishing docks of San Diego. The deckhands would pay me $3.00 to clean a toilet when the boats returned from albacore fishing for the day. They were nasty! Then the captains hired me to clean the engine rooms for $10.00 and clean the bilges. Back then the boats all ran GMS and they puked oil and the bilges were an oily mess and the engine rooms were about 110 d...
8/25/2017 19:00 www.mvtivoli.org
Tall Ship Haulout
I’m up early. Sunrise illuminates the brightly colored buildings lining the waterfront of Lunenburg harbor. Two men in a small dory row past. The famous schooner Bluenose II ghosts past; even filled with tourists she is a beautiful sight. The tall ship Europa, a Dutch training vessel, is moving slowly out of the harbor, then stops. I wonder whether they are having problems and come to realize they are maneuvering the vessel into a railway drydock for haulout. I watch for an hour or more as she i...
8/25/2017 09:42 feeds.feedburner.com
Testing AIS MOB beacons, ACR's DSC feature especially
Written for Panbo by Ben Ellison
Given my accidental activation of an AIS MOB beacon a few weeks ago, it seemed like a good time to test beacons again. I hoped to at least see all the major brand multifunction displays properly react to an AIS MOB test transmission, putting up the distinct safety message that I should have seen during "the incident" and that every owner of an AIS MOB should be familiar with. Potential beacon users should also understand the specific activation, test, and deactivation controls on their device, plus I have two newer beacons with special features worth examining in detail...
8/24/2017 19:00 www.oceanpearlyacht.com
End of the Voyages...
Ahoy Land dwellers ~ It has been some time since I have penned a blog update. Truth is a lot of LIFE got in the way that prevented me from doing so or it was too painful to frame it up in words. The good news is…the Jones’ are back on board the good ship ‘Ocean Pearl’ cruising in the oh so familiar New England waters this summer. To back up some…we capped off our Northern European cruising late Fall of 2015 whereby we revisited Gibraltar and set off into the Mediterranean for the Spanish ...
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8/23/2017 08:54 feeds.feedburner.com
Laying Up - AYB
Sunrise - Atlantic Yacht Basin
Yes, we finally escaped the current at Morehead City Yacht Basin and made a short day's run to River Dunes Marina in Oriental, NC — though not without incident. A storm followed us almost all the way and finally caught up just before we pulled into River Dunes. Running from inside a protected pilot house heavy rain is never a problem, however lightning is a different story. Waiting out the blinding rain storm before easing into the skinny little creek that leads to the marina, thunder and lightning soon became the issues to deal with.
In all the years and all the miles of doing this, we've never had any problems with lightning; been in plenty of storms, but suffered nothing worse than the anxiety it brings.
Then - a loud bang, a flash, and we realized we'd been hit or almost anyway.
Sonar, chartplotter, and radar screens blinked then rebooted, I turned to head back out to the Neuse River and deeper water, then started working to bring back some electr...
8/20/2017 15:45 mv-ghostrider.blogspot.com
Late August 2017: Boat Business
It has been nearly a month since we wrote: “While in excellent condition for a 15 year old boat, we nonetheless have a potentially long punch list based on surveys, sea trial and our own personal preferences”. Scratch the word “potentially”. It’s a long list.
Ghost Rider in Her Maintenance Slip @ OPC...At The End
Of a Fairway, It Can Be a Tight Maneuver
That said, we – with lots of help from James Knight and his gang at Yacht Tech – have made great progress. While we occasionally find ourselves in the not usual see-saw scenario (remove one item from the punch list, but add another) that lengthy list mostly now consists of things that have been lined through and are pending sea trial(s) to verify satisfactory completion. Since we don’t plan to be hanging out near home port once we cast off the lines, we want to be fairly certain that the work done on the main engine, wing engine, generator, hydraulics and stabilizers provides solid ops-normal reliability. And we ...
8/19/2017 14:43 feeds.feedburner.com
CRUISING NEAR CORFU WITH FRANK AND MARIE
Envoy is now cruising around the Ionian Sea with our daughter Amy aboard for a six week stay.
Sorry this post is a bit overdue as my friend Lionel has pointed out.
I forgot to mention in our last posting that due to our delayed departure from Lefkas we were able to meet up with long-time friends Kevin and Diane O'Sullivan and family, who were starting a week-long yacht charter from Lefkas. We had a great dinner and, as I've often mentioned, the taverna owners nearly always give you something for free – in this case dessert. After we paid the bill and walked back about a kilometre to the marina the taverna owner came up to us on his motor scooter; “my friends ... I'm so sorry ... I forgot to give you this gift.” He handed over free bottle of wine and one of olive oil. NZ restaurateurs could learn from this!
Our first night out anchored at Two Rock Bay we had a problem. I normally check the condition of Envoy's start battery bank at the beginning of each season and this becomes increas...
8/19/2017 05:37 feeds.feedburner.com
Nordhavn 57-26 Istaboa
8/18/2017 06:41 www.kensblog.com
[KensBlog 2017-07] Tribune Bay
It’s funny how you can be surprised on a boat. We were looking for a place to drop anchor while running south to Nanaimo and noticed a horseshoe shaped island (Hornby Island) that seemed like it had a nice big anchorage in the middle. At first we ruled it out because it was wide open to the south and the cruising guides said the anchorage could be dangerous in a south wind. The forecast was for wind from the Northwest only, which meant the wind shouldn’t be a problem. That said, we’ve been foo...
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