Laura Dekker in Cape Town...nav charts direct from Google Earth give zero cat enters pirate zone...bare-boat secrets...Ten mainsail tips...yacht feature and much more

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 01 Dec 2011

Laura Dekker in Capetown

Just arrived in Cape Town - photo by Candice Chaplin, Cape Times  .
Notoriously media-shy solo sailor Laura Dekker has not only survived a 50 knot storm to arrive in Cape Town at the end of her Indian Ocean passage, she has done it with a coolness which belies her sixteen years, and with little fuss outside the sailing world.

If she achieves her next leg as planned – from Cape Town back to Gibraltar in the next few months - she will then not be able to avoid a mainstream media storm as the youngest circumnavigator ever. As long as she completes this leg before September next year, she will take the unofficial record from Australia's Jessica Watson. The way she's handling her successive oceans, it doesn't seem a big ask.

What a good mixture of usefulness and fascination there is in this week's edition. Topping the list is the article about navigational charts directly from Google Earth. No more will you have to suffer the discrepancy between the real world and your electronic chart if you learn how to follow Paul Higgins' methodology.

Also making the news is a rally to dream about through the Canary Islands; PlanetSolar's arrival into pirate waters; an RYA published book about Offshore Sailing; some timely advice about smart bare-boat chartering; and Ten Tips on handling the main on a short-handed cruising boat.

That's just the tip of the iceberg, so browse down the headlines to find what interests you.

Sweet sailing!

Nancy Knudsen, Editor

Solar-powered cat reaches India, ready for the pirate zone
Sail-World Cruising,
Sailing teen Laura Dekker may have taken the Africa route, but Turanor PlanetSolar, the Swiss flagged, extraordinarily shaped solar-powered 35m yacht which has already crossed both the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, has reached India and is now docked in Aguada Bay in Goa.... [more]
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Navigational charts direct from Google Earth - and it's free
Paul Higgins/Nancy Knudsen,
If you have ever had a problem with inaccurate charting, you'll want to know about something that seems so simple in concept that it should have been done years ago, and wasn't - a program that can create navigation charts directly from Google Earth, avoiding any inaccuracy. Retired Canadian HP programmer Paul Higgins tells the story of how he came to create it, AND explains how to do it, free!... [more]
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Laura Dekker rounds Cape in fierce storms, arrives Cape Town
Carol Dolley, IOL/ Sail-World Cruising,
Laura Dekker, 16-year-old Dutch/New Zealand solo sailor, has rounded Cape Agulhas in 50 gusting 55 knot winds and arrived in Cape Town to be greeted by her father, Dick Dekker. 'Not even the most seasoned skipper will round Cape Point in winds like that. She's a very brave girl,' observed an experienced Cape Town sailor.... [more]
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Book Feature: 'RYA Offshore Sailing'
Rob Tickner/Sail-World Cruising,
A couple of weeks ago we ran a feature on RYA's excellent treatise on Passage Planning. This week there's another guide from the RYA for cruising sailors, this time on offshore sailing in general, written by experienced sailor in many of the world's waters, Dick McClary. If you're just beginning to poke the bow of the boat into the ocean, 'RYA Offshore Sailing' could be a handy acquisition.... [more]
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New Level 50 from Burke Marine
Colin Burgess,
Burke Marine is well known for its range of Personal Flotation Devices (PFD's) and with the implementation of the new AS4758.1 standard they have redesigned their range to suit the new standard.... [more]
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New ship-routing data trial may come soon for cruising sailors
Sandman PR,
In time, all new technology becomes cheaper and so trickles down to the individual user. New data from Tidetech, who already have excellent tide programs for cruising sailors, which enables ships to improve their routing efficiency, and is being trialed with a major cruise line company, is sure to become available to the cruising sailor before too long.... [more]
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Product of the Week: Deckvest LITE, a winner
Nancy Knudsen,
It's great flexibility was no doubt one of the reasons that Spinlock's new Deckvest LITE became a winner in this year's DAME Design Awards recently announced in Amsterdam. This is not a life jacket for crossing oceans. But it is the only expert-quality lifejacket especially made for RIBs, inshore and inland sailing, as well as motor boating and other water activities.... [more]
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Rally through the Canary Islands - February 2013
Lee Mylchreest,
There's plenty of time to prepare for THIS sailing rally - and if you can't sail there, you can charter a yacht and have a holiday of a lifetime. It's the Canarias Sailing Rally, first to the 14th February, 2013... [more]
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Book Feature: Two new books from the authors of 'Two's a Crew'
Nancy Knudsen,
First there is the adventure tale in Australia's Southern Ocean, sailing where even few Australian cruising sailors go, then there is the companion practical book, the result of a lifetime of sailing. Here are two new books from the authors of 'Two's a Crew', Jack and Jude Binder.... [more]
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Marine Photographers urged to use IPTC metadata to protect Copyright
Brendan Maxwell, Tetra-Media,
Sailing and boating clubs and events need to address the need for copyright protection of images taken by event photographers. This is not a new problem, but as the media world consumes more and more images, the problem of unattributed or incorrectly attributed images being supplied by clubs and events to media is growing.... [more]
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East Antarctic rifting triggers uplift of the Gamburtsev Mountains
British Antarctic Survey,
The birth of the Gamburtsev Subglacial Mountains buried beneath the vast East Antarctic Ice Sheet — a puzzle mystifying scientists since their first discovery in 1958 — is finally solved. The remarkably long geological history explains the formation of the mountain range in the least explored frontier on Earth and where the Antarctic Ice Sheet first formed.... [more]
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The secrets of smart bare boat chartering
Lisa Batchelor Frailey, ASA/Sail-World Cruising,
When you decide to go bare boat chartering, it should be the vacation of a lifetime – even if you take one every year! Booking a charter isn't always straightforward, and if done incorrectly, the stakes (financial and relationships) can be high. Lisa Batchelor Frailey here offers a professional insight into the charter booking process.... [more]
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Ten Mainsail Tips for Short-handed Cruising
Nancy Knudsen,
Most long range cruisers are trying to sail downwind when they can, but it doesn't always happen. Many cruisers are also sailing short handed. So handling the main on a cruising boat differs in many ways from that for a racing boat. Whatever your configuration you have to use the big sail to balance the helm and create or decrease power.... [more]
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RYA Volunteer Awards presented by HRH The Princess Royal
Susie Nation-Grainger,
Britain's Royal Yachting Association (RYA) Volunteer Awards were held this week at the RYA's AGM. Forty eight volunteers from across the country were recognised for their outstanding dedication and achievements in boating when they were presented with the awards by HRH The Princess Royal.... [more]
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Yacht feature: Sarissa
Jochem Kaan Superyacht Times/Sail-World,
A very special yacht. Sarissa's remarkable sleekness is what catches your eye first. This yacht will instantly appeal to the minimalist. She comes from Dutch Vitters Shipyard and is designed by Bill Trip and Rhoades Young Design - adding another high-performance, sportive and elegant yacht to sail the seven seas.... [more]
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Leaders urged to curb climate vulnerability
ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies,
Representatives of the world's governments meeting in Durban this week have been advised by scientists that urgent action is needed to reduce the vulnerability of communities worldwide likely to be worst affected by the impacts of climate change.... [more]
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