Over the last week and a half several big cruising rallies have departed the East and West Coasts of the U.S. for points further south, and the participants of the ARC will soon set off across the Atlantic. The sheer number of boats participating in these events — well over one hundred in the Baja Ha-Ha and Salty Dawg Rally and over 200 in the ARC — points to the continued popularity of cruising rallies and how they are a springboard for sailors to fulfill their cruising dreams.
After meeting many of the participants of this year’s Salty Dawg Rally at the boat show in Annapolis, I was able to see first hand the collective excitement that was brewing around such an offshore event. Many of the participants have thousands of ocean miles, others are just cutting their teeth as crew and there were more kids getting a taste of passagemaking than I expected see. But the most fascinating and energizing part of hanging with the Dawgs was the air of camaraderie that shined through the fleet. Everyone seemed excited to sail and poised to help a fellow cruiser out if need be, and I’m sure that attitude is going to follow them south to the B.V.I and beyond.
Enjoy this week’s edition.