Monday, June 30, 2014

Bonehead Move of the Weekend

via sfgate

Eleven people were plucked from Lake Conroe, TX as their boat was sinking because, apparently, no one inserted the drain plug before launching the craft, according to the Montgomery County Police Reporter.
The Pct. 1 Constable's Office Lake Patrol responded to a call from the sinking boat near the lake's east shore about 4:30 p.m.  June 28.
Lake Patrol personnel advised the operator of the 21-foot boat to follow the patrol boat to the nearest marina because the sinking craft would stop taking on water if it stayed in motion, the Police Reporter said.
Both boats were on their way to the marina when another vessel pulled up and told the pleasure boaters to stop, which they did, causing the boat to sink to the windshield and the passengers to end up in the water, the Police Reporter said.
Some of the 11 boaters were not wearing life vests, but no injuries were reported after the group was checked by emergency medical workers from the North Montgomery County Fire Department.
According to the Police Reporter, a crew from Towboats USA raised the rear of the submerged vessel with a crane and the front with airbags, making it possible  to drain water out of it.

Don't forget to plug before you play!

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Sailing on a $500k Yacht

What a ride!  John and I met up with Butch on Sunday for a three hour tour of the bay.  Our ride was a brand new Beneteau 45.  Three cabin layout, duel helms, and as beautiful as she is fast.  We cruised up the Oakland Estuary at about 7 knots and passing alot of smaller boats.  Once we were on the bay we pulled out the furling main and jib in about 18 knots of wind...and boy did we take off.  Butch sat back and we talked about his sailing career.  60 foot waves on a trip to Hawaii, starting a sailing school, and the advantages of buying new instead of used.  He was also a charter captain at one time.  We had a great sail up to Alcatraz and then back to the marina and Passage Yachts. 

One of the things he mentioned was a low cost way to sail now that I am boatless for the next few months while we convert to an electric engine.  He is a share holder in a company in Richmond called Tradewinds Sailing.  They offer sailing courses and sail boats for day sails on the bay.  The least expensive membership is a Mate Membership.  $40 a month allows you to join a boat going out.  They have boats from 22-36 feet including a 30' Catalina that is electric.  I am going to join on Friday!  Check them here.

Lastly, I found an amazing story of survival at sea looking around the news feeds on my blog.  Read it here.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Breaking: Rowers Rescued During Race to Hawaii

A dramatic rescue in the Pacific took place last night.  Read about it here.

Why Living Your Dreams Is So Important!

Liz Clark is a water women.  A college surfing star at UCSB, she had grown up sailing to the Channel Islands.  Her dream was to sail to the South Pacific and find the perfect swell.  She has been living her dream for 7 years now.   She has a very cool perspective on how to live your dream and why they are so important to you and making the world a better place.  Here is an excerpt from her blog:

"So aside from the obvious reason that following your dreams and living your passions makes us, as individuals, happier and more fulfilled, I believe there is a Greater reason why doing so is important…So let’s break down my theory…:)

We are each born with a great, unique potential. All of us have a different call or purpose in this life that cultivates a deep yearning to be fulfilled through physical experience. Imagine…you can know that you want to be a great chef, a wandering traveler, a singer/song-writer, or the proud owner of a business, but until you actually have that experience, there is an inevitable part of you that doesn’t feel complete. Or maybe you don’t quite know what you want, but you know you need to go figure it out. I’ve come to believe that the best thing that we can do for ourselves, our families, and for the world is to hear and follow our hearts and calls. The alternative is living in quiet frustration, haunted by whispers of what ‘could be’ or ‘could have been’. We can attempt to repress these whispers, to push them deeper, but I don’t think they ever truly go away…

But it’s never too late to hear and honor them! Even a small step toward living closer to our truest self makes us feel more alive, more vibrant, more inspired, and closer to the person and potential we know brews within us. Every time we make a choice that moves us in that direction, even slightly, vitality trickles in. We often don’t know what we’re moving toward or even what we really want, but we do know which steps feel like progress and which don’t. Trial and error, forward and back, faster, slower, but eventually closer to what feels right.

We tell ourselves a thousand reasons why we should not move towards our dreams and goals: “There’s too much risk!” … “I’m comfortable…” “I don’t want to fail…” “I have a family to support…” I say the risk of regret is much riskier. I say that comfortable is caustic and that the only failure is having never tried. And for the noble householder, I say, what better example, what more important message could you pass along to your children and/or partner, than: ‘Become the greatest You!’, and ‘Live a life you Love!’??  The joy and peace transmitted through this example are worth more than all the material things you could ever provide.

 This could seem like a selfish concept at first, as it may not intuitively link to uniting humanity and saving the planet. But wait…I’m getting there…Doing what we really want to do in life can seem a little selfish, probably because we are taught from youth that sacrificing ourselves for others and doing what society needs us to do is what makes us worthy and admirable (…granted that sometimes there are situations and consequences that demand our responsibility and/or  we should always avoid hurting people and use integrity when making decisions!). But in general, our society teaches us that achievements are the things that you can note on your CV or measure in the number of zeros in your salary.

I say achievements are the decisions we make and actions we take to be true to ourselves. I say learning to truly love Oneself is our greatest achievement…and hearing our dreams and calls is a powerful path to getting there. It’s a process, and the road is long and windy, but in my opinion, it’s not money or fame or letters of recommendation that make us admirable. Admirable is each small, humble, and inwardly-celebrated step that we make toward becoming more self-aware, changing habits that don’t serve us and others, and living a life we believe in.

And so, with great courage, we might take a step towards living our version of a more authentic life. Initially, your loved ones might feel betrayed, but with persistent, loving explanations, the people who really love you will understand and want you to seek happiness. Your choosing to do so is a very powerful statement that they can too. As you walk, no matter how slowly, toward each small goal and higher vision of yourself, you give others courage and reason to do the same. This courage is profoundly contagious. And it all starts with a small decision to go within and listen to what you really want out of life. "

Read the entire post here.

I am taking a big step towards my dream of sailing to New Zealand today!  Sailing on a Beneteau on the bay and getting a feel for these boats.  She is a 45' brand new boat.  One step at a time!

Saturday, June 21, 2014

The Green Room

A while back I was in charge of a large group that wanted to spend a week on Lake Powell houseboating and then a week rafting down the mighty Colorado River thru the Grand Canyon.  We had a beautiful week on the lake with catered meals, entertainment and water sports.  Then a smaller group took off for the Colorado River.  We had two large rafts with about 15 folks on each boat.  I had been down the river once before with my Dad.  It is one of America's greatest adventures with scenery to match.  I had told the river guides that we should plan a nice hike at Havasu Creek.  The water has a high concentration of calcium and with the very clear water, it creates a rare turquoise color in the water.  The river guides were game and said they had something special in mind for those that want to join.  A few of the guests joined and we hiked up to a swimming hole/waterfall called Beaver Falls.  There was some river crossing and bouldering involved, but we all made it.  The guides invited me to join them for the surprise, so we jumped in and swam towards the 40 foot cascading waterfall.   We clung to the rocks at the base of the falls and I was asked to go first.  They instructed me to go down 10 feet, go back 10 feet and then look for an opening.  Being a competitive swimmer most of my life, this was a piece of cake.  I dove down with my goggles on and could see perfectly.  There was the hole I was looking for.  I popped up and was stunned.  The small cave was above the waterline and could fit 4-5 swimmers and was a perfect rectangle behind the waterfall.  The most amazing part: the green color from the reflected sunlight.  Wow!  The other two guides popped in and we shared the glory of the moment.  I felt very privledged to experience this.  The local indian tribe had used this cave as a passage into manhood along with a handful of peyote.  It was a very cool experience and one you should try if you are fortunate enough to get on the river.

I sure am enjoying the drone work being done in the sailing world.  The perspective from above is spectacular.  Check this one out from a part of the world I have just returned from:  St. Barts!

Friday, June 20, 2014


The Skipper from Show Love on Vimeo.

Looking forward to the Volvo in 2014!

The Volvo Ocean Race began life in 1973 and remains sailing's pre-eminent round-the-world yacht race and one of the most coveted prizes in the sport.

The Volvo Ocean Race is the leading round-the-world yacht race for teams, with a series of stops that give fans the chance to see the boats up close and experience the spectacular In-Port Race series.

Scoring for the 12th edition of the Race in 2014-15 has not yet been finalised but the honours will be awarded based on points won on the individual stages rather than on total elapsed time. That has been the case ever since the seventh edition in 1997-98 and it means teams can still challenge for victory even if they are forced out of one or more of the legs. Final details on the scoring system will be published soon in the amended Notice of Race.

Find out more about the history of the race here, get latest info on our ports and route here, and stay up-do-date on race progress by following us on Facebook, Twitter or checking out the news section of our site here.

Weekend Sail Coming Up!

Heading out this weekend on a beautiful Beneteau.  Not sure of the model but it may be the one I intend to sail to NZ and OZ in 2018.  I met a dealer in January at the boat show in SF.  As I stood at the helm of this brand new Oceanis 41, it felt like home!  Can't afford the $285k price of a new model, but should be able to purchase a 2003-5 in a couple years.   I will report back on Monday on the sail and the adventure!

Monday, June 16, 2014

Rowing to Hawaii from CA

Last week several teams pushed off the dock with their high tech row boats and headed west to Hawaii.  In what could take 60-90 days until they spot the volcanic paradise, it's going to be tough going for the single and double rowers.  Just getting off the coast proved to be a daunting challenge in 20-30 knot winds:

"Team NOMAN shoved off about 18 hours after solo racer Daryl Farmer pushed off from the dock.  Farmer pushed hard during his first several hours of rowing and appeared to have made it beyond Point Pinos in good time.  However overnight he was pushed back into Monterey Bay, where he was in the company of fellow solo racers Elsa Hammond and Jim Bauer who have been circling inside the bay since the start last Monday.  Strong prevailing winds have made getting around Point Pinos the biggest challenge, especially for the solo rowers who have all deployed a parachute anchor while sleeping to avoid drifting backwards too far.  In today’s daylight hours, all the solo racers are heading out to the mouth of Monterey Bay once again to try to get beyond this elusive point.  Mary Rose of Project Flight Plan is the only solo racer still on shore.  A medial kit being shipped from the UK had been delayed in US Customs and an electrical fix needed to her boat identification system have prevented Mary from joining the race.  Today, just after the weather window closed, with her electrical issue fixed, the package arrived.  Mary, along with the other remaining crews, will need to wait until June 16 or 17 when the next weather window opens for them, allowing them to depart.

The French team of CC4 Pacific are starting to make the break into the deeper waters of Monterey Canyon.  According to Race Director Chris Martin, “Once teams pass over the threshold, the waves become more of a rounded swell than choppy onshore waves allowing for more comfortable rowing.”  In other news for the French from their shore team, the two cousins of Clement and Christophe reported they “rowed many [hours] and are not moving as much as they would like because winds and current. They have bad back but their morale is always fixed. They saw their first whale today!”

Check out the website here.

And here is an article about another couple that is just doing the row to the islands for "fun". 
Click here.

Pics of the Week

Friday, June 13, 2014

AC Drops SF From Contention

Here is what Lat38 says about Oracle/Team USA dropping SF from the next America's Cup:

We're not sure if it's polite to dump someone by email, but that's the method that Oracle's Russell Coutts used to inform Mayor Ed Lee that San Francisco would not be the site of the next America's Cup.
That's a shame, for as was proven in the Finals of the last America's Cup, San Francisco Bay is the ideal place for the competition. The sailing conditions were fantastic, the spectating and interaction between the participants and fans was superb, and San Francisco was never presented in a more favorable light. Sailing and San Francisco were both big winners.
That the America's Cup organizers and San Francisco failed to reach an agreement for the next America's Cup is hardly surprising, as relations between the two, and between Oracle Team USA and large segments of the city's whiny residents, were never good. Ellison and Coutts seemed to think that San Francisco wasn't supportive enough, and detractors pointed to the fact the last Cup supposedly cost San Francisco $11 million — a laughably small sum that isn't even equivalent to the pensions of three or four of the legions of underworked and overpaid city employees.
Perhaps the biggest problem was that Ellison, worth untold billions, and the City, on fire with social media and tech money, as well as the darling of tourists the world over, don't really need each other. Both are sitting fat and pretty on their own.
The loss of San Francisco as a potential America's Cup site leaves three less-than-inspiring sites in contention: San Diego, Bermuda and Chicago. San Diego is a wonderful place, but simply doesn't have the challenging winds for a proper America's Cup. It would be like holding the Masters Golf Tournament at a dried-out muni course. Or the Winter Olympics at Dodge Ridge. Bermuda? While the sailing can be nice, the tiny little place is the antithesis of cosmopolitan, and is so overcrowded that residents are only allowed one car per house. That leaves Chicago, which we think would be the best choice of the three. The freshwater sailing can actually be quite good, and while there aren't a lot of sailors in some parts of the Midwest, we think the America's Cup is the kind of world-class event that even non-sailors could enthusiastically get behind.
So all we Northern Californians are left with are memories of the 34th America's Cup. But what great memories! While the buildup and Louis Vuitton Semifinals were a flop, and there was farce and tragedy, the AC 34 Finals were the most unique and earthshaking in sailing. And Oracle Team USA's victory after being down 1-8 was the greatest comeback in sports. If there is a silver lining to the dark cloud of San Francisco's not being selected as the site of the next America's Cup, it's that no future America's Cup will be able to live up to the drama and excitement of the Cup competition that was held on San Francisco Bay.

The Grand Poobah has spoken.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

New Boat Project: Going Electric!

Our Newport 30 partnership is heading into a big boat project: converting our boat to electric propolsion.  We are going to remove our old diesel and put in 4 large batteries that will move our boat with an electric motor.  Our motor range will be somewhere between 15-20 nautical miles which will cover  95% of our sailing needs.  This is exciting folks!  I will be documenting our engine removal as well as the install of our new system.  Check the website if you are interested in converting.  Click here.


No trips to the gas dock
No oil and grease in the bilge

No smell
Environmentally friendly


No burning of fossil fuels
Eliminates fuel on board
Generates power while under sail

Add a wind generator or solar panels and become energy self-sufficient


Have a relaxed cruise around the marina or lake
Hear the water lapping the hull and the rolling swish of the wake
No need to raise your voice so your crew (and everyone else in the harbor) can hear you


       Powerful electric motors drive their power right to the prop at all speeds
       Electric Yacht's QuietTorque
systems range from from 5kw to 40kw
       Elco Motor Boat systems range from 2.5kw to 39kw

       Instant On - No warm-up time
       No shifting or grinding of gears while trying to wiggle out of a 
       tight docking situation
ull motor torque is available from zero RPM to full speed
       "Electric sail" with a small power boost when the wind is light

Jules Verne Trophy

The Jules Verne Trophy is a prize for the fastest circumnavigation of the world by any type of yacht with no restrictions on the size of the crew provided the vessel has registered with the organization and paid an entry fee.[1] A vessel holding the Jules Verne trophy will not necessarily hold the absolute round the world record. The trophy was first awarded to the first yacht which sailed around the world in less than 80 days. The name of the award is a reference to the Jules Verne novel Around the World in Eighty Days in which Phileas Fogg traverses the planet (albeit by railroad and steamboat) in 80 days. The current holder is Banque Populaire V skippered by Loick Peyron in 45 days 13 hours 42 minutes 53 seconds.

The boat above was on course to break the record but damaged their centerboard west of the Cape of Good Hope and had to head to port.  Most of the speeds you see on the vid are in the mid 30's (knots).

This boat did go on to break the record and currently holds the record on their 2012 attempt.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Music Madness

One of the great things about the web is the plethora of music resources.  One of the sites I visit on a daily basis is Filter Music.  I believe its just a guy hosting tons of handpicked, web based stations.  No commercials and no talking, just music.  The area I head to when roaming the web or just looking for some relaxing tunes is the Downtempo/Ambient section.  I love Mixing of Particulate Solids.  It is a great mix of ambient and New Age that is really awesome.  Lots of diffrent genres to explore here and 1000's of stations.  If you love music like I do, check it here.

Monday, June 09, 2014

Water Ski Surprise

Been crazy with work and travel.  Hope to be sending out more water love soon.

Wednesday, June 04, 2014

Protocal for AC 2017

Newly released protocols for the 2017 races have been released.  Although the location for the next event has not been decided, all bets are on San Francisco as the racing here was spectacular.  To read the latest, click here.

Tuesday, June 03, 2014


Kelly from Morgan Maassen on Vimeo.

One of the greatest.

Back from the Islands

I love Anguilla!  On our 5th Boyz Week, we traveled to the British West Indies and the lovey isle of Anguilla.  I have been to a few islands in my time, but none as amazing as this one.  The people, the unspoiled beauty, and the chill feel, made this one of the top vacations of my life.  We stayed in a beautiful villa (thank-you Frank!) at a resort called Viceroy, overlooking the azure waters. One of the many highlights was attending the annual Anguilla Day celebrations with the island's 14k inhabitants.  There was even a sail race around the 17 mile long island.  We saw the finish and met several crew members. Without fail, I commandeered a fast Hobie and sailed each day in Meads Bay.  Loved that.  If an island trip is in your future, please visit this Caribbean paradise.