Ocean Voyaging

Culture clashes?

 As we voyaged through the Banda Sea of East Indonesia, local officialdom has treated us with the laissez-faire attitude yachts are used to. When we reached Seram, however, we were 100 miles from Ambon, where 5,000 people were recently killed…

Support for 121.5 and 243 MHz EPIRBs to be discontinued

 The International Sarsat-Cospas Program announced it will terminate satellite processing of distress signals from 121.5 and 243 MHz emergency position indicating radio beacons (EPIRBs) on February 1, 2009. The regulation applies to all 121.5 and 243 MHz Class A, B…

Lost at sea

Laura Gainey, 25-year-old daughter of hockey star Bob Gainey, was swept from the deck of the 180 foot S/V Picton Castle late Friday night. The Lunenburg Nova Scotia-based sail training vessel was bound for the Caribbean when the accident occurred…

Velux race shrinks to 5

 Swiss sailor Bernard Stamm aboard Cheminees Poujoulat has won the first leg of the Velux 5 Oceans race by arriving first in Fremantle, Australia, following a 42 day 22 hour and 18 minute elapsed time from the start off Bilbao,…

Sun-based transatlantic

 One of our contributing editors, Eric Forsyth, a winner of the Cruising Club of America’s Blue Water Medal and a multiple circumnavigator, has written in the pages of Ocean Navigator about a possible “Green†transatlantic race. The idea of the…

Freezer envy

In sailing, there are two types of cruisers: those with freezers and the rest of us. The yachties with freezers lead a glamorous existence filled with filet minion, ice cream, and cold drinks. The rest of us subsist on an…

James Bond movie set?

We are at Kur Island, an outpost if I ever saw one but the Japanese gave money to build a huge wharf and fancy waiting room and ticket office for a "ferry"; the village men are building a coral road…

Staying connected

Two closely related pieces of equipment are emotional lifesavers for living aboard in a coastal anchorage or out at sea, a satellite email transceiver and computer. During a circumnavigation, I often took refuge in therapy sessions with the computer through…

A biolight puzzle

We sailed three weeks straight from New Caledonia to Darwin, and sometimes when you stay at sea for weeks at a time, the world becomes strange. In early September the prevailing winds over Australia’s Top End were light, and it…

Coral Sea encore

Seems like deja vu...a few hours to go until the next departure for the Coral Sea working with the charter company Nomad Sportfishing, this time to Flinders Reef. The last month's work at Marion Reef featured epic fishing for dogtooth…

Organized voyaging

As a former management consultant, I used to tell other people how to get organized. When I moved aboard for a long voyage, I took my own advice. But I must admit it’s easier to solve someone else’s problems than…

Cold mornings and nasty VAT

From voyager Amanda Glickman in Greece: It's getting cold here in Greece. normal mornings inside the boat are 50 degrees F and we got snow on the mountains two days ago. We're in Preveza with three other voyaging yachts, one…

Second tri down

Less than 24 hours after Steve Ravussin capsized the Orange tri, British sailor Ross Hobson flipped his 43-foot trimaran Ideal Stelrad, in 45-knot winds and 20-foot seas. He has been picked up by the Spanish freighter, Carmen. More on the…

Tri capsizes

Steve Ravussin, sailing the Orange trimaran in the Route du Rhum race, survived a wild capsize in 35 knots of wind and short, steep seas 600 miles northwest of the Azores. Ravussin was able to set off his 406 EPIRB…

Kip Stone sailing downwind on Day 5

On Day 5 of the Route Du Rhum, Kip Stone on Artforms, currently leading in Monohull Class 2, reflects on his weather strategy so far: "Early yesterday, I gybed away from my competitors in order to accelerate the effects of…

An American in France

As a sailing enthusiast, I was lucky to get to see the start of the 2006 Route du Rhum, the top European solo ocean race with many famous French and English sailors entered in the race and only one American…

Tough passage to Vanuatu paradise

There are some people who maintain that they have no regrets and that, given the opportunity, they would not change a single thing if they could do it all over again. I am not one of those people. I have…

Power gadgets and older voyagers

In a ‘round the world sailing rally a few years ago, three things surprised me about the boats: First, the large size boats operated solely by a man and woman. Second, the wide range of complex equipment including creature comforts…

Yachts and cruisers

When you hear the word, yacht, doesn’t it conjure up size? Glamour? Megayachts or the royal yacht Britannia? Personally I don’t attribute the term to my Peterson 44, preferring sailing vessel or cruising boat. The Aussies, however, have it mixed…

Kip Stone race prep

 Kip Stone of Freeport, Maine is in France this week preparing for the October 29 start of the Route du Rhum, an 86 boat race from France to Guadeloupe. Kip took a few questions from Ocean Navigator prior to the…

Mastery and independence

Living onboard for extended voyages by small boat is not the most comfortable way to live or travel. There is a real element of risk ranging from the unnerving tedium of being becalmed to the panic of storms and unfriendly…

Solo racers battered

The sailors in the Velux 5 Oceans Race have been battling high winds and big seas for the past day or so. The singlehanded, two-stop around the world race started on Sunday, Oct. 22. Mike Golding, a British around the…

Up with the yards! USC goes to sea

  On October 19, a crew of USC students will sacrifice long showers, pizza, and the weekend’s parties to embark on a four-day voyage to Santa Catalina Island on the twin brigantines Irving Johnson and Exy Johnson. Each student is…

Solo, around the world - two stops

  While the non-stop Vendee Globe race has become the premier solo around the world race, an older solo around the world race with multiple stops is still around and is slated to start on Oct. 22 in Bilbao, Spain.…