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Is this what is really needed?


The latest cruising news from the Northern Hemisphere and the world.
 11 May 2017

Is this what is really needed?

The 50m version of the BlackCat supermaxi  BlackCat Superyachts
Cats have literally smashed the cruising scene. It is basically a decade a go when charter fleets were full of monohulls and cats were those weird, ungainly, and certainly heavy set ‘other things' in the anchorage. Things move on, and even cruising cats without daggerboards can point, and they can run with the breeze pretty well too. Some well and truly no longer need 15+ knots from 60 degrees or more to get going, either.

Lighter construction, stepped hulls, adequate sail plans, and items like Screechers have made it all the more fashionable, and then a flat deck, voluminous interior spaces and the best ever al fresco arrangements, just sealed the deal. Today, the modern apartment on water is a very commendable thing, has a fit out anyone would be happy with, sails well, does an awesome job as a motorsailer too, and when the pick's down, it is utterly unparalleled.

Back in,-and-a-rally-has-timed-stages.../465375!When a cruise is a race, and a rally has timed stages...!new, we looked at the issues surrounding the use of the smelly when on long passages, as part of a ‘rally'. Don't get me wrong, I am a self-confessed technology nerd, with propeller hat and pocket protector included! I am amazed how quickly giant 30m maxi-trimarans are getting around the globe, whether with just the one sailor on board, or several. I mean, we're now at 40 days, which is half the time of the original notion!!!

All very lovely with this BlackCat.  BlackCat Superyachts

So inside all of that are some key points. One, the tri is the preferred speed vehicle, so how long will it be before the cruising tri appears? Secondly, the tri is also the one they all now turn to as the best foil delivery system (not withstanding a very old and even more convoluted ‘event' that is shortly about to take place). So I paused and asked myself why some on this planet are after 35-50m ‘cruising' cats, capable of a sustained 25knots and a 600+nm 24-hour run? Firstly, it will be wet! Anything over 15 knots is, and whilst a salty spray may go smashingly well with a margarita, it is not so much the case with a glass of the bubbles.

Also, you have to buck and kick a bit at that speed, even on a maxi, which means you could have people losing said cocktails over the side, along with their lunch, and worst of all, have them get a face full of it all back at them in the vortex! The great Miles Seddon told us a little about all of that in So what's it really like?!new.

The 35m version of the BlackCat supermaxi  BlackCat Superyachts

True. Mitch Booth is a Tornado legend, and Malcolm McKeon is a renowned superyacht designer, but just how many souls are going to want to open up the ‘throttles' on a supermaxi BlackCat catamaran and cross the Atlantic in four and a half to five days? The Blue Ribband does not mean that much to anyone anymore, and the great liners are now either museums or razor blades. However, based on the ARC scenarios of the last 12 months, you would not be the only one thinking it could be more than a few.

So accordingly, just like a lot of things in this life, even cruising could be a changing, and that will be really awesome to watch. Now a vessel that large may not be for many, and I can't imagine she'll go stern to at many places either. Also, 14 and 18m beams, for the 35 and 50m versions respectively, will sheer around on an anchor with a decent old arc, so the challenges are there from the outset.

In the end, good luck to all, and may we see one on the water soon. The need to be fuel-efficient is omnipresent, even at this level, so a return to wind power could be the answer. Also, given that the brand new 110m Jubilee has only just finished her sea trials and is already for sale, are we seeing concern for how much it costs to run 9,600hp, even for those that occupy this space?

Solar, Diesel and Wind - Race For Water  Race for Water / Peter Charaf

OK. In this newsletter you will find that we have tales for you about the ARC, Race for Water, health in foreign lands, Dutch Canals, LED underwater lighting, naff bits of kit that really work (yes, we should have another ‘quippy' piece soon), weather, piracy, Jon Sanders in Panama, training and courses, rescues, as well as much more.

So you see, there are tales, lessons, inspirations and history to regale yourself with. Please do enjoy... We're really enjoying bringing you the best stories from all over the globe. Remember too, if you want to see what is happening in the other Hemisphere, go to the top and the drag down menu, select the other half of the globe and, voila, it's all there for you.

Now then, are you out there plying the seas and got something to say? We'd love to hear from you via – In the meantime, do you love being on the ocean? Well remember to love them back too. They need our help. Now more than ever! Until next time...

John Curnow

Eighteenth blog from on board Perie Banou II - Colon, Panama
Jon Sanders,
Colon remains, as with previous years, a dangerous city. But it is much cleaner and getting better. Perie Banou II is tied to the relatively new Shelter Bay Marina. Colon. Good Marina. With services, some modest. Balboa is the port for Panama City on the Pacific Ocean. The other end of the Canal. If one looked at a map or chart of all of the Americas and one wanted to cross from the Atlantic to th... [more]

ARC Europe and ARC USA get under way
World Cruising,
After a busy programme during the week in Nanny Cay Marina the 37 boats on ARC Europe and USA were ready to take the start on a windy Saturday morning. After checking out with Customs and Immigration the day before, receiving all the information for the next leg at the skipper's briefing, having their last breakfast ashore, calling friends and family the boats left under the steel pan music... [more]

Race for Water Odyssey - Kitting across the Atlantic
Race For Water,
After a month at sea, sailing from Lorient to Bermuda, the crew of the revolutionary Race for Water vessel has been learning the art, and the science, of their high-altitude kite. Currently in the middle of the Atlantic, the Race for Water is averaging five knots towards Bermuda, which will be the first stopover of this five year Odyssey focused on promoting ocean preservation.... [more]

VI South Club Night – Mexico to Australia – A two year plan
Bluewater Cruising Association,
This is Will and Sarah's story of how they made the dream a reality: One year in Mexico to buy and prepare their boat Hydroquest, a Beneteau First 405 – for going offshore, and one year to sail her across the Pacific Ocean, with a final plan to sell in Australia.... [more]

It is not always smooth sailing
Don and Heather Cudmore,
The most amazing thing about boaters is the close-knit community we establish. It is present everywhere we go; whether in Desolation Sound, the Gulf Islands, throughout the US, or in the Sea of Cortez. Sailors are resourceful, caring and helpful individuals. We enjoy sharing information, and if able, will help each other with any problem as it arises.... [more]

Ocean adventures – ARC Europe and ARC USA set sail
World Cruising Club,
On Saturday 6 May, crews of two World Cruising Club rallies waved goodbye to the Caribbean shores of Tortola as they set off for their offshore adventures as part of the 2017 editions of ARC Europe and ARC USA. Run concurrently, these rallies are taking some crews homewards and others to new cruising grounds.... [more]

Dutch canals standing mast route
SV Taipan,
The weather was not quite spring but not raining. Seas were flat and current in our favor, enabling a rapid passage round the corner into the first of what will be many locks on the Standing Mast Route north through Holland.... [more]

US Coast Guard rescues 3 from sailboat 1,200 miles offshore Cape Cod
Coast Guard First District Northeast News,
The U.S. Coast Guard coordinated the rescue of three people Saturday after a Swedish-flagged, 32-foot sailing boat became disabled and demasted 1,200 miles east of Cape Cod. An Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon (EPIRB) aboard the sailboat AELA alerted Coast Guard watchstanders to the distress.... [more]

LED lighting goes beserk
SV Crystal Blues,
This year in the Caribbean I've often been delighted, though more often offended, by the incredible displays of light pumped out of sailing and power vessels at night time. It seems that the energy efficiency of LED lamps has launched boat owners on a new quest to throw light into the water and the sky.... [more]

Objects of intense desire
Rob Murray,
We have a few things aboard Avant that other cruisers see and immediately say: “We have to get one of those for our boat!” These ‘objects of intense desire' make life aboard easier by solving simple problems simply. One of these is our mosquito coil holder.... [more]

Rosslare Harbour lifeboat assists yacht off Wicklow coast,
Rosslare Harbour RNLI assisted three men onboard a yacht yesterday evening (Wednesday 3 May) after it got into difficulty off the Wicklow coast. The all-weather lifeboat, under coxswain Eamonn O'Rourke and with six volunteer crew members onboard, launched at 6.40pm to the 13m yacht, which developed engine problems while travelling north. The yacht's progress was further hindered...... [more]

The six ingredients for hurricane formation
Weather Forecast Solutions,
As we approach the 2017 Atlantic Hurricane Season [Jun 01-Nov 30], observing the sea surface temperatures [SST] indicates the “hot spots”, no pun intended, for hurricane development/intensification. By the way, the term 'hurricane' is synonymous with cyclone and typhoon, with the only difference being where they are geographically located:... [more]

Benjamin Franklin first to chart the Gulf Stream
Kat Eschner,
Benjamin Franklin is known for shaping the Constitution, writing letters as a woman, chowing down on native foods and hosting an anatomy school in his home. What doesn't often get mentioned is that he was also the first to chart the Gulf Stream. He completed the first scientific study of the current on this day in 1775, according to Today in Science History.... [more]

Coast Guard Cutter Tahoma home in Maine following rescue patrol
Coast Guard First District Northeast News,
The Coast Guard Cutter Tahoma returned Friday to their homeport of Kittery, Maine, following a 67-day patrol offshore New England waters in support of Coast Guard Operation Atlantic Venture. The operation focused on safety of life at sea, and enforcement of fisheries laws and regulations on commercial and recreational fishing vessels in the waters between Maine and New Jersey.... [more]

Maritime piracy report - First Somali hijackings after five-year lull
ICC International Maritime Bureau,
Pirates and armed robbers attacked 43 ships and captured 58 seafarers in the first quarter of 2017, slightly more than the same period last year, according to the latest ICC International Maritime Bureau (IMB) piracy report. The global report highlights persisting violence in piracy hotspots off Nigeria and around the Southern Philippines – where two crew members were killed in February.... [more]

Seven Seas Cruising Association 27th annual Penobscot Maine Gam
Seven Seas Cruising Association,
An SSCA Gam is a get-together of members, with an emphasis on camaraderie and sharing of cruising information. This event also begins on the water—with a dinghy raft-up and cocktail party on Friday afternoon, during which cruisers will tie alongside one of the mother ships, pass platters of snacks, and share cruising stories.... [more]

Ancasta announces line up for Poole Harbour Boat Show (19-21 May 2017)
Alison Willis,
Ancasta has announced its line up for Poole Harbour Boat Show 2017, which takes place from 19th to 21st May 2017. Ancasta is delighted to be back at the show, following its success last year. As the UK's largest Beneteau Power and Beneteau Sail dealer, it will be presenting the Beneteau Oceanis 38.1 and 41.1 as well as the popular Swift Trawler 30 and 44 motor yachts.... [more]

Seventeenth blog from on board Perie Banou II - Panama
Jon Sanders,
I am back on the high seas. Left Nanny Cay Marina using engine, motored to Norman Bight, Norman Island, British Virgin Islands. In quiet weather, sailing, motor sailing, or motor boating I can clip the tiller on (quick easy). Then clip the Simrad electronic tiller pilot. Then I steer electronically.... [more]

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