It’s Cut & Dry

It’s amazing how what happens or doesn’t happen on the boat can make such a difference in my mood. In some weird way, I am not that competitive with other people. In fact, in the workplace, I have always been a total team player, giving credit even when it isn’t due to others and beingContinue reading “It’s Cut & Dry”

Neah Bay to Bedwell Harbor and Checking into Canada

It’s not for the faint hearted. As I rounded Cape Flattery, I was careful not to take any shortcuts. After a full day at sea, it’s always tempting to cut that last corner, but I resisted the urge this time! I went to sleep a little after 07:00 having just cruised 25 hours from AstoriaContinue reading “Neah Bay to Bedwell Harbor and Checking into Canada”

A Wild Ride Outbound on the Columbia River Bar

The cold weather finally broke last week, returning Southeast Alaska to more seasonal temperatures, in the 30’s and 40’s. The warmup came just in time, last week was a trying week for me. In the course of a few days, I managed to fry something in my Heart Inverter and flood my Wallas DT40 heater.Continue reading “A Wild Ride Outbound on the Columbia River Bar”

Two Weeks So Far & Still Bitterly Cold

It’s been below freezing since the new year began. The first few days of the year were only in the mid-20’s, but for the last 10 days temperatures in Wrangell have stayed in the small range of 8° to 15°F (-13° to-8°C). This is the coldest outbreaks Southeast Alaska has experienced in more than 10Continue reading “Two Weeks So Far & Still Bitterly Cold”

Surviving Winter on a Boat

We are in for a period of really cold weather, at least for Southeast Alaska, with temperatures going down to zero (F) by early next week and staying in the single digits for a week or more. I’ve had to turn up my Wallas heater, no longer content to leave it on the minimum setting.Continue reading “Surviving Winter on a Boat”

Sailor Woman

Have you ever had to try to comfort a terrified pet? Maybe they were terrified of being in the car? Or of thunder? Going to the vet?  It’s not a situation of safety nor even of any risk, the fear is totally unjustified with the reality. But you know that no amount of words canContinue reading “Sailor Woman”

BBQing in the Snow of Winter

My first wife was a vegetarian. While I wasn’t, I did eat less mean than previously and tried not to cook meat that produced smoke (like hamburger) in the house. Therefore, since the mid-‘70’s, I’ve had a BBQ grill no matter where I lived. Whether in Fairbanks, Alaska, Italy, Germany or now, on Dauntless, I’veContinue reading “BBQing in the Snow of Winter”

24 Hours, 2 Shrimp, 2 Crab, Bad Batteries, a Poor Forecast and a Dying Engine

Saturday was supposed to be a respite between the storm systems that roll over the North Pacific and into the Gulf of Alaska. Light winds, periods of no rain. That’s great. It wasn’t to be. Since the beginning, I’ve told anyone who would listen to never bet your safety on a weather forecast. And inContinue reading “24 Hours, 2 Shrimp, 2 Crab, Bad Batteries, a Poor Forecast and a Dying Engine”

Crabby Lady

Three years ago, when I met Tee and her son Thien, in the hot, humid climate of SaiGon, it was far from Alaska as one could get, mentally and physically. But as I got to know the Vietnamese in general, and Tee in particular, it became clear to me that while her dream of AmericaContinue reading “Crabby Lady”

A Humdrum Day

As we returned to Wrangell Harbor after a day of fruitless fishing, but with 5 Dungeness crabs at least, I thought about how I was now an “old pro” returning to this harbor and dock. What made me think that? This was only my 7th time returning to this harbor and docking on this dock!Continue reading “A Humdrum Day”

The Day of Reckoning

Who said old dogs can’t learn new tricks! By Friday, the weather still looked good. That evening, I told my crew, Tee and Thien, that they could sleep late. I could get off on my own, but they needed to be ready for action by 09:00 sharp and they needed to be prepared to spendContinue reading “The Day of Reckoning”

Preparing for the Day of Reckoning

Yesterday, Saturday was the Debacle, Sunday the Plan was made.  That gave me five days to sort out the windlass and get it working again. First thing I did was get out the Ideal windlass manual for my ACW windlass.  I had two issues: As we were hauling the anchor, it became more and moreContinue reading “Preparing for the Day of Reckoning”