One small boat, one huge ocean
When Peter Nichols' marriage dissolved, the last item to be settled was Toad, his 27-foot sailboat. After it sat for nine months in a yacht broker's yard with a price tag, Nichols, a Brit, decided to sail it alone across the Atlantic and attempt to sell the boat in Maine.
Australian teen Jessica Watson drew international attention - and criticism - when she undertook a solo circumnavigation attempt at the age of 16. She completed her sail around the world May 15 aboard a Sparkman & Stephens 34 sloop.
Safety at sea never goes out of style. "The Elements of Seamanship: Third Edition" ($12.95, Flat Hammock Press, 2009) was first written by Roger C. Taylor more than 25 years ago and has been updated to be more relevant to the boaters of today.
The firsthand detail and advice found in the "Atlantic Cruising Club's Guide To Mid-Atlantic/ICW Marinas" ($39.95, Jerawyn Publishing, 2010) by Beth Adams-Smith is invaluable. The full-color oversized seventh edition covers the coast from Hampton, Va., to St. Marys, Ga., and features 216 marina reports with more than 5,000 photos that detail what's on site, what's nearby and what it will cost to dock.
On Oct. 20, 2002, Capt. Dave Shoemaker headed out onto the Bering Sea at the helm of the 190-foot longliner Galaxy and was soon fighting for his life and those of his crew. Intended as (and priced as) a safety training DVD for the commercial marine industry, "Lessons from the Galaxy: Tragedy and Courage on the Bering Sea" ($295, John Sabella & Associates, 2010) tells the story of Shoemaker's struggles when an on-board fire threatens the lives of everyone aboard and reinforces the importance of regular safety training, no matter how much boating experience one might have.
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