Sunken Yacht Found Off Darwin, Australia

Police are investigating what happened to the crew of a mysterious yacht believed to have capsized in the Timor Sea about 170km off Darwin, Australia.

An Australian fishing vessel stumbled across the wreckage after pulling up the boat’s mast and sail in its nets last week. The unidentified yacht was discovered by an Australia Bay Seafoods ship in about 90m of water, according to the ABC. Continue reading

Posted in Dock Talk | Tagged , | Comments Off

Sail On Hobie Alter

Hobart “Hobie” Alter, who started out shaping surfboards, and ended up shaping a culture, passed away peacefully at his Palm Desert home on March 29 surrounded by his loving family. Born on October 31, 1933 in Ontario, California, he was 80 at the time of his passing.

The recently published biography “Hobie: Master of Water, Wind and Waves” reveals the story of this true Renaissance man. The son of a second-generation orange farmer, Hobie flourished spending time at his family’s Laguna Beach summer home. And it was here in the family’s garage back in 1950 where he began his somewhat accidental career by combining his two loves, wood shop and water, crafting handmade 9 foot balsawood surfboards for his friends. Continue reading

Posted in Dock Talk | Tagged | Comments Off

British Yachtsman Died From “Blast Injuries”

A British man found in the ocean next to his burning yacht “died as a result of multiple-trauma in keeping with blast injuries”, according to a post-mortem. Fifty-three-year-old John Edward Garner was discovered on March 28 in the waters off the Caribbean island of St. Vincent.

A police statement said: “Garner’s body was discovered with injuries to both of his legs as well as to his head. Prior to the Coast Guard’s arrival, personnel of Indigo Dive, St. Vincent, had responded to the incident and had found the body of the deceased floating in the water. Continue reading

Posted in Dock Talk | Tagged | Comments Off

Caribbean Safety and Security Net Discontinues Daily HF Voice Net

Effective April 1, 2014 the Caribbean Safety and Security Net (CSSN) will discontinue the daily HF voice net on 8104 at 0815 HRS. Despite the interest in the net that was indicated in the user survey, actual participation rates were too low to make the effort required to sustain the net worthwhile. Many thanks to Harm Brink of S/V Horta who served as net controller for the last two years, and to all those who participated.

Safety and Security reports will continue to be accepted and published on their website, so bookmark and check the site regularly for the latest important NEWS and incident reports. The CSSN team has many new site features under development, which will add new functions and further improve the user experience, so check back often.

Posted in Dock Talk | Tagged | Comments Off

Help the NSHOF Spread the Love of Sailing

The National Sailing Hall of Fame (NSHOF) is looking for sailboats (30 feet plus) and their owners or skippers to take high school students enrolled in Anne Arundel County School’s STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Math) programs for short sails from NSHOF’s docks in Annapolis, MD during several days in July.

If you’d like to help spread the love of sailing to Science, Technology, Engineering & Math (STEM) high school students this Summer, please help the National Sailing Hall of Fame by donating a little bit of your time on your boat sailing in the Bay near Annapolis. They have two sessions in July — you can participate as much or as little as you like. Over the last three years more than 2,865 students have participated in the program — 95% have never sailed before. Each participating boat will have a trained chaperone/instructor on board who will be responsible for the students, so all you have to do is pilot your boat and share in the fun! Read More

Posted in Dock Talk | Tagged | Comments Off

Coast Guard and AMVER Rescue Three Sailors Off Panama

The U.S. Coast Guard coordinated the rescue of three sailors aboard a sinking sailboat approximately 50 miles south of Balboa, Panama, at approximately 5:23 p.m., Sunday.

Watchstanders from the 11th Coast Guard District rescue coordination center in Alameda, Calif., were notified at approximately 4:15 a.m. Sunday of a distress signal from a U.S.-registered 406 MHz emergency position indicating radio beacon (EPIRB) that was traced to the 42-foot Even Star. Search planners contacted the family of the owner who said the vessel had three U.S. citizens aboard and were on a voyage from California to Panama. Continue reading

Posted in Dock Talk | Tagged , | Comments Off

Dufour Yachts Celebrates 50 Years

In 1964 French engineer Michele Dufour realized his vision to build a new kind of sailing yacht using the “modern” technology of Fiber Reinforced Plastics. His first model, the Sylphe, was solid, seaworthy and fast for its time. The concept succeeded and launched Dufour Yachts into the rapidly growing worldwide market for recreational yachts. Fifty years later,  Dufour carries on with an award winning line of 10 models ranging from 31 to 56 feet, all noted for outstanding sailing performance, cruising comfort and exceptional finish quality. Join our Facebook page for a look back at the classic models that blazed the trail to today’s modern range of fast, comfortable cruisers. And for information on the current line of Dufour Yachts visit

Posted in Sponsored Posts | Tagged | Comments Off

Introducing Offshore Sailing School’s NEWEST LOCATION in the sailing capital of the world! Scrub Island Resort, Spa & Marina–British Virgin Islands!

Just minutes away from Beef Island/Tortola airport, this luxury private island resort is a serene 230-acre haven, offering deluxe accommodations and 2, 3 and 4-bedroom villas. You will enjoy Ixora Spa, world-class restaurants, three private beaches and a 55-slip marina.

Visit America’s #1 Sailing School® on Scrub Island for your sailing vacation. Teaching 3-day and 5-day Learn to Sail; 3-day and 5-day Performance Sailing; 5-day Bareboat Cruising Preparation, and 7-day Fast Track to Bareboat Preparation certification courses.

Posted in Sponsored Posts | Tagged , , | Comments Off

Ten Top Sailing Tips for Cruising in 2014

Here are some great cruising tips from Capt. John of to get you ready for your 2014 cruising adventures…

Is your small sailboat and sailing crew prepared for the challenges that might pop up while on a coastal cruise this coming year? Have you thought through the “what if” scenarios and come up with a plan of action? Follow these ten sailing tips for safer sailing throughout the new year–wherever in the world you choose to sail or cruise!

Share your knowledge with your sailing crew, spouse or partner. That way, If you are incapacitated, they will be able to sail, reef, and steer your sailboat to safety. Start with these ten sea-tested sailing tips for sailing season 2014.

1. Show Your Sailing Crew Your System Operations Continue reading

Posted in Boat Rat's Tip of the Week | Tagged , | Comments Off


Built with two decades of superyacht construction experience gained at Cape Town’s renowned Southern Wind Shipyard, the SW82 Feelin’ Good is the first of this hull series to recently launch. Designed by Farr Yacht Design and Nauta, and sporting a striking ALEXSEAL® metallic Dolphine Blue finish, Feelin’ Good has flawlessly captured the essence of blue water sailing. The Southern Wind Shipyard is the dream realization of a man who has always breathed the sea air – Guglielmo “Willy” Persico. Willy’s passion for sailing helped to mold the taste and experience needed to create the best that the market can offer – realized in this SW82 and her sister vessels. Here at Alexseal we are celebrating our 10th Anniversary in 2014 – A Decade of Innovation also led by our personal passion for boating. We have a genuine interest in the success of your yacht’s finish. Contact us today to learn more.

To see more Big Finishes, visit

Posted in Sponsored Posts | Tagged , | Comments Off

Boat Review: Catalina 445

At first sight you know there is something different about the Catalina 445. The design’s topsides appear lower than her sister ships and the cabin top has a lower profile. The cockpit is large and has twin wheels and throughout the cabin the moldings are more angular, more modern than we have seen from Catalina before.

This is the next generation Catalina and it has been created to be a fine liveaboard home, a sweet sailing, offshore-quality boat and an excellent, long-term value for its owners. Continue reading

Posted in Boat Reviews | Tagged , | Comments Off

As soon as you step aboard your yacht you can feel the attention to detail on a Horizon Yacht’s charter. And it’s not just because we operate one of the youngest fleets. Nor because we inspect every yacht, including below the waterline, after every charter. Nor because of our world-class maintenance standards. Not even the fact that we operate true 7 night 8 day charters, starting on any day of the week.

It’s the people. Every member of the staff is committed to ensuring you have the vacation of a lifetime. Whether you are learning to sail, bareboat cruising or on a luxury-crewed yacht, our staff ensures it’s everything you hope and dream of in a Caribbean-sailing vacation. You’ll know you’re in the Right Company when you sail with Horizon Yacht Charters.

Posted in Sponsored Posts | Tagged | Comments Off

Man Overboard “Happy to Be Alive” after Dramatic Rescue in Clipper Race

Following Derry, Londonderry, Doire’s dramatic North Pacific rescue operation, crew member Andrew Taylor is making a good recovery, with Skipper Sean McCarter explaining to Clipper Race officials:  “Andrew is in good spirits and has been chatting away with his crew, and whilst clearly shocked, he is quite happy to be alive I think!” Continue reading

Posted in Video of the Week | Tagged , | Comments Off

Knowing Your Boat Mechanically Webinar

Learn about your boat’s mechanical functions on Tuesday, April 15, from Larsen Marine expert Mark Kish in his webinar, Knowing Your Boat Mechanically. Enjoy your cruising even more with the confidence this webinar can provide as you learn to face and conquer the challenge of cruising in rural and wilderness areas without nearby systems support.

Continue reading

Posted in Tech Talk | Tagged , | Comments Off

Rope Fest is this Weekend!

R&W Rope of New Bedford, MA will host their annual Rope Fest family event on Saturday, April 5 from 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM at the R&W’s warehouse headquarters located at 39 Tarkiln Place, New Bedford. It is free and open to the public.

Planned activities are family-friendly and will give children and adults the opportunity to learn new skills related to rope use in a variety of hobbies and sports. The event will feature ropework demonstrations by expert knot tyers and splicers, as well as informational sessions on recreational climbing, fitness, and rescue. Kids activities, giveaways, and complimentary food and refreshments will round out the daylong event. Continue reading

Posted in Cool Things to Do | Tagged , | Comments Off

For the Hungry Crew

Here’s a salad recipe that is sure to be a hit with the crew this spring and summer…

Watermelon, Heirloom Tomato, and Feta Salad

- 2 tablespoons chopped mixed fresh herbs
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 4 heirloom tomatoes, cut into chunks
- 1 cup (1-inch) cubed red seedless watermelon
- 1 cup (1-inch) cubed seeded yellow watermelon
- 1/4 cup vertically sliced red onion
- 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Whisk together first 4 ingredients in a large bowl. Add tomato, watermelon, and onion; toss to coat. Sprinkle with cheese; toss gently.

Courtesy of

Posted in For the Hungry Crew | Tagged | Comments Off


In the International and Inland “Rules of the Road,” a vessel being towed at night should show what lights?

Send your answer to A winner, who will receive a Blue Water Sailing hat, will be selected at random from the correct answers.

Thanks to last week’s Mindbender winner, David Benfer, for his answer to ”What information is needed to complete a dead (ded) reckoning position?” last fix, speed, course and time underway. (Note: If set and drift are added to the equation it is an Estimated Position [EP].)

Posted in Mindbender | Tagged | Comments Off

Cruising Shot of the Week

Thanks to Todd Gillenwater for this gorgeous shot taken from the famous Soggy Dollar Bar in White Bay, Jost Van Dyke in the British Virgin Islands!

Do you have cool shots from your sailing adventures? Send them to us at

Posted in Cruising Shot of the Week | Tagged | Comments Off

Broad Reaching with Andrew Cross

Raft Logic

The lights of the shop shined through the bright, fluorescent-orange roof of our life raft as I zipped up the doors. It was an eerie feeling to sit, look around and take stock of what being in a life raft means. I pictured being there with my family, trying to keep busy, keep watch or keep dry and warm. Consider me humbled.

I was at Westpac Marine Services in Tacoma, Wash. last Thursday to get my life raft and MOM8-A serviced, and to research an upcoming article for BWS. Spending three hours learning about my raft and about safety at sea in general was a sobering experience; one that I highly encourage any life raft owner to do upon your next servicing. Because how many sailors actually know what their raft looks like when it is inflated and what is inside? The technician I worked with unpacked my raft in front of me, inflated it with an air compressor, walked me through every component and showed me the things that make my particular raft unique. I hope to never spend more time in the raft than I have to. But by learning about it in great detail, I’ve at least gained the peace of mind that if I truly need it in an emergency, I’ve been in it before.

Enjoy this week’s edition.

Posted in Broad Reaching | Tagged , | Comments Off

Dutch Sailor Missing in the Atlantic

Dutch sailor Sietse Hagen left the port of Tenerife heading for the Caribbean on January 15th, 2014. Since his departure, now over 60 days ago, he has not reported home. His friends and family, as well as the Dutch sailing community, are deeply concerned about the well-being of this very experienced sailor.

Sietse Hagen is sailing a 27 foot Gib’Sea Flush Poker named Pokerface, small but well prepared for long voyages. He carries no satphone or SSB radio. The boat is recognizable by its fixed spray hood and the black painted stern. Sietse has been reported missing to the local and international authorities, but all help in keeping a lookout for his boat would be very much appreciated. If you have any information that could help finding Sietse please contact the Netherlands Coast Guard or your local police.

Posted in Dock Talk | Tagged | Comments Off