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Boating Know-How with Mike Saylor

There are plenty of ways to boat on the cheap

I  think it was the water rat in “The Wind in the Willows” who said (and I paraphrase) there is nothing quite as worthwhile as messing around in boats. I couldn’t agree more. In today’s economy, though, can boating be affordable? I think it can, and it’s worth the effort as long as it doesn’t wipe you out.

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Teamwork can take the angst out of docking

There is nothing quite as funny or sad as an ill-prepared and insecure skipper and crew docking or anchoring — usually husband and wife, girlfriend or significant other. It’s funny if you realize what a spectacle you made of yourself in the past. It’s sad when you realize what a spectacle you made of yourself in the past.
When I taught sailing, we would tackle this toughest and most critical problem for new boaters from the get-go. I would explain that when they mastered these steps everything that followed would be a piece of cake. (So I exaggerated a little.)

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Running in fog requires exceptional diligence

Fog stinks. I hate it at sea and on land. It makes me more vulnerable to idiots, whether they’re on a boat or in a car.

Advection fog forms day or night when warm air flows over cold water. It’s the heavy, moving fog often found near the coast. It can be associated with wind.

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Don't lose sight of the simple approach

To paraphrase Occam's razor: When there are alternative solutions to a problem, the simplest solution is usually the best - in other words, keep it simple, stupid. This maxim holds true for boating, both power and sail.

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Start the new season with a proper fitting out

The Earth has made another circuit around the sun, and it's time to get ready to launch another boating season. Same game, new day. We can bid a sobbing farewell to the miseries of winter, as those of us fortunate enough to own a boat begin spring preparation and fitting out.

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