EXPLOREMY LIBRARY
Boating & Aviation
PassageMaker

PassageMaker

July/August 2020

PassageMaker Magazine (PMM) is the market leader covering the boats, people, gear, and destinations for the trawler and cruising-under-power lifestyle. Over the years it has evolved to connect the marine industry to consumers through print, digital, online, and in-person brands (Trawler Fest, Trawler Fest University, and Trawler Port)

Country:
United States
Language:
English
Publisher:
Active Interest Media
Frequency:
Bimonthly
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8 Issues

in this issue

2 min.
brave new world

Last September, Canadian Bill Norrie embarked from his homeland on a solo circumnavigation aboard his 28-foot British Channel Cutter yacht Pixie. His goal of sailing the Southern Ocean beneath the world’s five southernmost capes was ambitious enough. Then, while at sea, far away from any human contact, the world changed. The magnitude of that change felt downright otherworldly here at home. As a new realm of pandemic-triggered rules and regulations tightens around us like a tourniquet, many of us have been forced to swallow a heaping dose of restraint when it comes to indulging our primal boating instincts. No one likes to be told that he can’t do something, especially something that probably keeps us farther away from a land-based virus than any stay-at-home order ever could. Yet, when lockdown arrived, I…

2 min.
the word on the docks

Circumnavigating is a dream that many boat owners harbor in their minds, but only a precious few actually make the journey—and even fewer do it alone. A handful have written about their passages, providing fodder for the high-seas visions in our heads. Here are a few of our favorites. What We’re Watching: Life At Sea Known as JeffHK on YouTube, this professional seaman and avid videographer works on ships that cruise around the world. Through his videos, he dives into the bowels to offer a glimpse of a world that few of us ever get to experience. Whether he’s filming the details of four-story-high main engines, photographing a transit of the Suez Canal, or capturing what it feels like to battle heavy seas in the middle of the Atlantic, his channel has…

2 min.
talk about out of the loop…

Ocean passages have a way of cleansing the soul and washing away the worries of the world. But who except the bravest—or craziest—among us would willingly strike out without communications, charts or navigation equipment? And what would the world look like when we returned, particularly if the world were dealing with a deadly pandemic? Experienced Canadian sailor Bill Norrie was well prepared when he left Vancouver, British Columbia, last September aboard his 28-foot sailboat Pixie on a solo circumnavigation by way of the Great Capes. But as fate would have it, he encountered some rough weather along the route, leaving him far less prepared as the journey wore on. According to a report from CBC News correspondent Joel Dryden, a February storm off the Falklands forced Norrie into port in South Africa…

4 min.
planning for the worst

It was a run-for-your-life moment. A few years ago, a friend removed an old life raft from his boat and put it on the dock. It was 15 years out of certification, and he was buying a new one. Out of curiosity, he pulled the inflation line. The hard canister burst, the raft inflated quickly—almost violently—and the raft wedged itself between power posts on both sides of the dock. We ran fast enough that we weren’t pinned. And yet, to this day, that episode serves as a reminder for me about why it’s important not only to have a life raft on board, but also to have it mounted in the right place and to know how and where it can be deployed in an emergency. Most of the common, hard-shell-container life rafts…

1 min.
packing an abandon-ship kit

The items that should be in your abandon-ship kit depend on your cruising area. An open-ocean voyage requires far different planning than a cruise along the Intracoastal Waterway. Basics that should be in every abandon-ship kit include: An EPIRB. Self-deploying EPIRBs have the same type of hydrostatic device that life rafts have, which means that the EPIRB won’t self-release from the boat and activate until the boat sinks. Better to take the EPIRB with you in your ditch bag, so you can activate it manually. A waterproof, handheld VHF radio. You’ll also want spare batteries, and a satellite phone if possible. An electronic SOS strobe light. Several good ones are available for less than $100, and they qualify as nighttime flares. The light never expires as long as you keep fresh batteries in it.…

3 min.
fyi: dsc and mmsi

It may not rank up there with the great mysteries in life, but it is definitely a puzzlement: Why don’t more boaters set up and understand the use of the Digital Selective Calling function on their VHF radios? Next to the invention of the EPRIB, the single-button DSC feature is the most valuable safety feature developed for boaters. In some ways, it’s even better than an EPRIB. Unfortunately, based on random surveys taken during United States Coast Guard Auxiliary safety checks, fewer than half the DSC-equipped VHF radios on recreational boats are programmed for use. When properly used in near-coastal and inland waters, DSC, with the press of a single button, can alert more people to the need for help than any other method. DSC digitally sends a distress call to rescue…