Sailing wing and wing from Christmas Cove to Elephant Bay, USVI.

The wind in the SW North Atlantic north of the Caribbean remains elusive. I discussed it with Chris Parker of Marine Weather Center last week. Together we came up with three options:

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Rain: Collecting Water

Our current rain collection system is exceedingly simple.

I was having morning coffee and lounging in the cockpit chatting on the phone with Gayle. I could see the rain coming…a lot of rain. I signed off and sure enough it was a real gullywasher.

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The Main Thing is to Keep the Main Thing the Main Thing….

Everyone needs a place of Zen and happiness…this is mine.

My good friend Colonel Steve Davis USMC was the first person I ever heard say “the main thing….” He was a terrific leader and had a unique gift for preventing his unit from getting distracted. He never lost sight of the mission and knew how to keep the team focused like a laser-beam.

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Celestial Navigation: Going Back to the Beginning

A part of my celestial navigation tool-kit.

I learned celestial nav a long long long time ago, as in way before anyone ever heard of satnav. But I was a youngster and never got proficient. And though we don’t have a chart plotter on the Far Reach, I, like most of the modern world, have come to rely on GPS because it’s quick, simple, and accurate. But…using GPS always leaves me feeling…unsatisfied. Like I cheated. It’s just too easy. There is no reward.

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Alone Again: Small Projects and Maximum Chill….


Deep into Michener’s Tales of the South Pacific.

It was a sad day to see Gayle fly home. We had a great time together. But the kids have to declare their college selection by 1 May. She needed to assist them with another round of campus visits so they can make a wise choice. So we divided our combat power into two elements, each with missions to accomplish.

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Our Surface Supplied SCUBA System or Hookah


The basic hookah is the first stage, 50’ of air hose, and the second stage regulator. I added a pressure gauge to the second stage after the photo was taken.

I have a fair amount of diving experience. I earned my PADI card when I was 17. I’m also a military trained diver and served in dive billets for nine years. But I don’t have diving gear anymore and I think I made my last dive about 2003. I just snorkel now.  But I always think about options….

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A Long Beat Back to St Thomas



Beating back against the NE Trades from Culebra to St Thomas.

After a wonderful week in Culebra it was time to head back to St Thomas. Unfortunately, St Thomas is about 20nm dead upwind against the powerful Caribbean trades. We prepared the afternoon before by stowing gear and stripping the sun awnings and sail covers. We hauled Sweet Pea up and inverted her on the cabin top and snugged her down securely in her teak chocks.

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