I awoke to the deep bellow of a foghorn. Looking out through the nearest port, I could see the starboard lifeline and not much beyond. I knew there were boats anchored nearby and a ferry working its way in, or out of the harbor, but I couldn’t tell which. Poking my head out of the companionway I could see the fog wasn’t moving; the blades on our wind generator were lifeless, the water flat calm. My decision was immediate, a pot of coffee went on the stove and we sat to wait for the sun to have the final say.
Paper charts, gong and bell buoys, fog horns, compasses, radars, chartplotters and AIS units are all at a mariner’s disposal to aid in navigation when operating in restricted visibility. Having used these tools successfully in fog from San Francisco to Florida, to New England and the Pacific Northwest I–and many others–have concluded that waiting it out is usually the most prudent decision. Plus, there’s nothing quite like savoring a quiet foggy morning at anchor.
Enjoy this week’s edition.