Two Cool Videos for Sailors

By: American Sailing Association, Elearn, Members, Sailboats, Social Media, Weather

A couple of videos ASA sailors should see this week: #1 Our latest advanced sailing tip produced in cooperation with Forespar Sailing. See this video and plenty more in July’s online “Sailing with Style” magazine. #2 Now this is cool. All sailors have to be keen observers of the sky (night and day) and the shifts in weather conditions. Clouds, wind direction, and color are all critical in sailing and learning to sail. Here they are on spectacular display in Spain’s Canary Islands. “Every man needs to find a peak, a mountain top or a remote island of his own …

Pacific Tsunami — News, Updates, and How to Help

By: American Sailing Association, Safety, Social Media, Weather

Those of us in the United States woke this morning to hear about a massive and devastating tsunami in Japan, the result of a powerful 8.9 earthquake off of the country’s northeast coast. At ASA our prayers are with the families of those who have been killed and hoping for the continued safety of the survivors. Damage has also been reported in Hawaii and the West Coast of the US; mostly boats and docks hit by the surge. Boats that moved out to sea were unharmed. Beaches and piers are closed due to strong undertow and currents. Here are some …

February Photo of the Month Winners

By: American Sailing Association, Members, Sailboats, Social Media, Weather

This month’s photo contest on Facebook was one of the most closely contested we’ve ever had. With 30 entries for the theme “Cold, Foul Weather, or Winter Sailing,” we had everything from folks breaking ice and sailing on Northern lakes to people sunning themselves in the Florida Keys. We even had a pair of wooden “gutter racers” and a shot of somebody’s hot tub (where they’ll be safely ensconced until spring). Click here to view the entire album. A huge thanks to everyone who contributed, and without further ado, we present the winners: FIRST PLACE Even though this photograph, simultaneously …

Voyaging with Velella: The Irresistible Horizon Line

By: American Sailing Association, Sailboats, Weather

Continuing the “Voyaging with Velella” series by ASA writer-at-large Meghan Cleary. Meghan, Prescott and their kitten Nessie are on a planned 9-month cruise in the tropics. Red sky at night, sailor’s delight. I love it when those sayings about weather turn out to be true. Makes me feel like a real old salt. Like how my last sight of the evening sky looked like this, and this morning the lagoon is pure glass. White flocks of egrets’ wings flap across the still water along knotted mangrove forests, tufts of smoke hang in the dense hills, this sky is an almost …

Weathering Earl in the British Virgin Islands

By: American Sailing Association, Safety, Sailboats, Schools, Weather

Many of you have been lucky enough to learn to sail, cruise or charter in the British Virgin Islands. Here is an update from Pat Nolan who owns and operates Sistership Sailing School on Tortola after recently weathering hurricane Earl: Location, location, location. That real estate mantra also applies to hurricane survival (followed closely by preparation, preparation, preparation). Having just come through the very large, very powerful category 4 hurricane Earl in the BVI, I can say that both location and preparation are key to minimizing damage. Lucky for us the eye of the storm passed about 30 miles north …

Sirocco and Bora Bora Breezes

By: American Sailing Association, Flotillas, Members, Weather

Continuing “Croatian Tapestry” The builders of Korcula were excellent urban planners. Inside the walled city the narrow alleyways feel mazelike, but in fact they are laid out in parallel lines with only a couple cross streets running the entire length. The ancient builders positioned the streets this way to take advantage of the seasonal winds: Warm Sirocco breezes are the city’s natural air conditioning in summer, while the cold northern Bora Boras, coming from the perpendicular direction in the winter, are blocked out. Our passage back to Milna from Korcula gave us first-hand experience of the biting Bora Bora, beginning …

Managing Weather

By: American Sailing Association, Instructors, Safety, Weather

In this guest post, Captain Tony Wall of Biscayne Bay Sailing Academy recounts delivering a 46′ sloop–while managing the effects of a nearby hurricane. As a professional sailing instructor and USCG captain, I was contracted to sea trial a 46′ Bruce Roberts sloop named Harmony. Everything went satisfactorily, the deal went through, and the new owner, Veli-Matti Alho, asked me if I would be interested in delivering the yacht from Port Everglades to Galveston, Texas, crossing the Gulf of Mexico. My work schedule did not permit this, but I offered to teach him the ASA certifications Coastal Cruising and Bareboat …