Thanks to Beverly Parsons for this beautiful shot of Kastellorizo, Greece.
Do you have cool shots from your cruising adventures? Send them to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Knockin’ About in Boats
It was a picture perfect sailing day on Narragansett Bay. Boats were everywhere, the breeze was fresh, and the sun was warm as we powered up the sails to closehauled on a starboard tack. After a few minutes I went to leeward to peek around the genoa for oncoming traffic. A good distance to port was a 30-foot cruiser closehauled on port tack. I took a bearing and watched it. No change. I alerted the helmsman and grabbed the air horn from its holder. As our range decreased, I could see that no one on the other vessel noticed us, so I gave a warning signal. They acknowledged with an “I see you wave,” and with plenty of room, fell off to duck us. But as they turned down they made one critical error. The main never got eased. I looked on in horror as they rounded up right into our beam. The noise of that collision is something I will never forget.
Collisions are not fun, whether you’re in a car, on a bike or just happen to walk into a door. But on a boat they take scary to a whole new level. Fortunately, in this story nobody was injured and both boats were spared. But the bottom line is, collisions should not happen. There is plenty of space on our waterways. While this week’s Cruising Compass may seem like the boating accident issue, it should serve as a reminder to be prudent when out on the water. Whether sailing in the bay or across an ocean, please take a few seconds to scan the horizon.
Enjoy this week’s Cruising Compass!