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Blue Water Sailing February 2019

Blue Water Sailing is the leading magazine for cruisers and offshore sailors. Every issue offers readers the dream of cruising under sail in the form of real stories from around the world and how to make that dream come true. Founded by circumnavigators George and Rosa Day, BWS offers valuable insights into what the cruising life is really like, what boats and gear work (and don’t work) and where to go for the best in cruising and sailing vacations. Plus, the digital version of BWS provides direct interactive access to dozens of great marine websites where you will find everything you need to make your sailing life safer and more fun.

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United States
Blue Water Sailing
4 Issues

in this issue

2 min
that second anchor

There haver been times in my cruising life when we have not been in a marina or moored to a mooring for literally months at a time. On a passage from Panama to New Zealand or Australia across the South Pacific, you can and probably will use only your own anchor(s) for 10 months. And on a voyage onward from New Zealand to the Med via the Red Sea, you will likely rely only your anchor(s) for up to 12 months without once going into a marina. Along the way, you develop your own habits and preferences for anchoring securely. The first thing to decide is what you will use for your primary anchor. The venerable plow was once the anchor of choice for cruisers but it has long been suplanted…

3 min
port antonio, jamaica

I was very excited to be headed to Port Antonio, my favorite place in Jamaica. I’d sailed there the first time from Aruba three years ago and discovered that it was a beautiful, laid back coastal town with the spectacular Blue Mountains in the background. The town had a slightly run-down, back-in-time feel. It had once been a British naval base, and then in the late 19th century it was a banana exporting port. Now, I was told, it was under special government protection from over development. People didn’t want Port Antonio to change, and it seems like it hasn’t much. I had spent a month sailing east along Jamaica’s north coast hopping from bay to bay. I’d been reading the wonderful novel, The Pirate’s Daughter by Margaret Cezair Thompson, which…

3 min
boot dusseldorf celebrates 50 years of being the greatest (boat) show on earth

Don’t capitalize it and don’t pronounce it like the footwear. It’s “boot” and it simply means “boat” in German. It’s a spectacle that every boater must see at least once in his or her lifetime because whether you like power or sailboats, kayaks or canoes, surf or paddleboards, dive gear or even marine art, you’ll find it in this western German city every January. This year, we even spotted a real live prince. It may be the dead of winter in Europe but some 2,000 exhibitors from 70-plus countries make the annual journey to Dusseldorf’s Messe exhibition center where 16 halls provide over 2.3 million square feet of exhibit space. About a quarter million attendees from over 100 countries came in 2019 during the show’s nine days to check out boats…

8 min
part of the process

The first Gunboat catamaran that I brought to North America from South Africa was almost 20 years ago. As with all new boats, we encountered a few problems along the way. The second Gunboat, another 62-footer taken north about a year later, also provided its own set of problems. By the time we took the third 62 from Capetown, SA to the Caribbean the following year, I began making comprehensive lists of problems and ideas on how to improve the design or construction of the boats. The lists were often five pages long or longer. It was a task undertaken without malice or pride and solely intended to provide feedback that would help the builders and ultimately the owners of the current vessel as well as owners of future boats. Happily…

8 min
knowing what you know

There is something about sailing that defies all but the freshest egos. This feeling people have that they ought to be able to step on a boat and know how to sail it must be primal, so that when it comes to explicit in struction, it naturally offends us to have to learn. People must feel the same about memorizing scripture or cooking. Maybe gardening or hockey. Any of it can kill you. Equally dangerous is the sailor who doesn’t know what she doesn’t know. So accustomed is she to having the line picked up just as her hand braved to reach it, so familiar is she with watching the application of phrases like “Give me some vang,” without ever reaching out to do it herself, this popsicle inside all of…

9 min
making a positive impact

If you enjoy cruising off the beaten track, there are many ways you can make a positive impact on the places and people you visit. Whether you’re sailing to less developed islands in the Caribbean, Mexico or Pacific, by researching your destination you can discover ways to make a difference in your experience, the environment and communities. When I first set off cruising on a Vega 27 at age 22, I had my hands full just keeping the boat off the reefs in the South Pacific and absorbing the incredible experiences. A couple years later after mastering the basics of cruising, I met a doctor on an isolated island who asked if I would sail him to several other remote islands that had no air service. The doctor conducted health surveys,…