Sat search and rescue,yachts challenge oil drillers, Chalong Bay stars

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 28 Nov 2013

Sat search and rescue,yachts challenge oil drillers, Chalong Bay stars

When Sir Robin Knox-Johnson made history as the winner – and only finisher – of the 1968 solo round the world yacht race, he was out of contact with the world for months at a time. No-one 'back home' knew what was happening to any of those competitors unless a sailor ran across a ship mid-ocean and sent back a message. How things have changed!

First it was the invention of the GPS, to make celestial navigation something rarer and rarer among cruising sailors, while encouraging a new crop of sailors to take the big step and go over the horizon. That has brought its own set of problems, as while GPS might be accurate, many of the world's charts certainly aren't.

Then followed a spate of inventions, the AIS, vessel tracking technology, the EPIRB and the PLB all taking some of the fear from being alone on an ocean, and encouraging yet more sailors to set off for distant ports.

Now some technical experts are suggesting that instant satellite imagery, so far normally in the possession of government agencies only and impossible to access quickly, might soon be used for search and rescue operations.

While you can't deny the advantages of this, there's something about it that makes me slightly uncomfortable. Will cruising our seven oceans soon become like accessing a superhighway? Where's the adventure? The freedom? Will my ex-spouse soon be able to track me even if I take off in a sailing boat?

Read excerpts from Bruce Dorminey's article on the subject, inspired by Robert Redford's latest 'shipwreck' movie (which won't be released Downunder until February 2014) and the recent real tragedy of the loss of the schooner Nina with seven crew in the Tasman Sea.

A great collection of other news again too: Read about how six yachts are challenging the might of the deep sea drilling industry in the Tasman Sea. The Atlantic Rally is off again with no less than 11 Downunder boats (See if you know anyone), World Oceans Day is appealing for funds and Greece has slapped a new huge tax on cruising boats. The yacht of the week is the Hanse 415 and the book of the week comes from inveterate engineless sailors Lin and Larry Pardey, who will be appearing at the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club in Pittwater on 6th December - no doubt to a sell-out house.

Talking of yacht clubs, it's good to see that Middle Harbour Yacht Club has scored a 'clean' award from the Marina Industries Association.

181113. News. Photo: Supplied
The Oil Free Seas Flotilla at the site where the ship Bob Douglas is going to be starting exploratory drilling in the next few days.   .. .

It's always heart-warming to see sudden acts of kindness from other sailors, and the small incident we describe in Chalong Bay in Thailand this week is a reminder of generous spirit that usually pervades the world of the cruising sailor.

Chalong incident - but some muscle is needed  .. .

Finally, if you, or someone you know is between 16 and 23 years and love adventures and sailing, think about applying to be crew in the Young Endeavour in 2014. Wish I were still 22!!

Much more to read too, so browse down the headlines to find your interest, and...

Sweet sailing!

Nancy Knudsen, Editor

Six sailing boats challenge deep sea oil drilling in the Tasman Sea
Sail-World Cruising round-up,
It's a flotilla of six sailing boats that are being used by activists to challenge deep sea drilling in the Tasman Sea off the coast of New Zealand. The beauty of the scene and the graceful lines of the sailing boats belied the drama that is developing over the issue.... [more]
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World Oceans Day appeals for funds
Alyssa Isakower/Sail-World,
World Ocean Day has recently launched an online fundraiser to raise funds to make World Oceans Day 2014 an even better opportunity for ocean celebration and action. Last year there were over 600 events held in 70 different countries - help us take this event to the next level!... [more]
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NSW govt launches Sydney Harbour Boating Destinations Plan
Minister for Roads and Ports,
The NSW Government has launched The Destinations Plan, an initiative designed to increase the number of services and amenities available to the general boating public on Sydney Harbour.... [more]
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Most advanced VHF ever, just launched
Ian Lockyer/Sail-World Cruising,
One of the most advanced marine VHF radios ever seen was launched at the METS in Amsterdam this week. The IC-M506 is packed full of features including integrated AIS receiver, NMEA2000 connectivity, ‘Last Call' voice recording function, ‘Active Noise Cancelling' technology plus, plus...... [more]
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Yacht of the Week: Hanse 415
Des Ryan,
So there's a new Hanse 415 out this year, combining precision building (well they're German aren't they) and excellent styling. Not only that, the new boat also shows a nice ease of handling which belies how well it sails. It's an ideal boat for a family cruiser, but can turn on a great show of speed.... [more]
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Book Review: Self-sufficient Sailor, by Lin and Larry Pardey
Lee Mylchreest,
This book is a reprint of earlier advice, and an update, but don't let that put you off. It is full of ideas and wisdom on how to sail in comfort and safety without large cash outlays, something the Pardeys have been famously promoting for many years. All sailors, whether or not they plan to sail over the horizon, will find valuable insights.... [more]
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Satellite imaging for search and rescue - coming of age
Bruce Dorminey, Forbes/Sail-World Cruising,
Two leaders in the field of search and rescue have stated that it won't be long before satellite imaging is all part of the matrix when a sailing boat sounds an alarm or goes missing in the ocean - and this could make all the difference.... [more]
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Successful search and rescue by Marine Rescue Trial Bay
Ken McManus,
A diver missing at Fish Rock, south of South West Rocks on the NSW Mid North Coast, was located and rescued by volunteers from Marine Rescue Trial Bay yesterday afternoon.... [more]
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Eleven 'down-under' boats join the 28th Atlantic Rally for Cruisers
World Cruising Club,
The 28th Atlantic Rally for Cruisers (ARC) set sail this week from Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, bound for Saint Lucia. Ten Australian boats, among them three multihulls, and one multihull New Zealand boat joined the adventure across the Atlantic. In total, 224 boats and 1,204 people, including 26 aged under 16, are sailing in this year's edition of the trans-ocean rally.... [more]
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Greece's new tax on cruising sailors announced
Cruising Association/Sail-World,
If you are thinking of sailing in Greek waters any time soon, there is information here that you will want to know. Britain's Cruising Association, a British organisation for cruising sailors, has announced the latest and most complete information about a new 'circulation tax' to be levied on all leisure craft over 7m spending time in Greek waters. The new regulation applies from 1st Jan, 2014.... [more]
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Young Endeavour seeks sailors between 16-23 years for 2014 voyages
Sail-World Cruising,
Are you, or do you know someone, between 16 and 23 years old who would love or benefit from going for an adventurous sail on a tall ship? The Young Endeavour is accepting applications for the ballot for voyages between March and August 2014.... [more]
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Welcome to Chalong Bay Thailand- and we'll rescue your boat if need be
Phukette Gazette/Sail-World Cruising,
There's nowhere more famous in Thailand than Chalong Bay for nomadic cruising sailors. Its vast anchorage spells a welcome to cruising yachts from all over the world. However, it's when the locals show just how real their welcome is by personally rescuing a foreign-owned boat that Chalong Bay's reputation really goes sky high.... [more]
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Love boat gear? So did 20,000 others at METS this year
Lee Mylchreest,
If you not only love sailing but love boat gear as well, there's one trade show in the world you would like to be at, and it's the Marine Equipment Trade Show in Amsterdam, every year in November. This year some 20,500 people attended.... [more]
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Good is great. Better is simply awesome at the Vicsail Beneteau Cup.
John Curnow,
The Vicsail team, headed by Brendan and Jo Hunt, are the guiding beacon when it comes to the gala regatta in Australia. For over 25 years they have held the always-entertaining Beneteau Cup on Sydney Harbour, with this year reaching even greater heights.... [more]
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Exclusive use aquatic licence for annual Water Ski Classic
Roads and Maritime Services Media,
The annual Bridge to Bridge Water Ski Classic will take place on a large section of the Hawkesbury River this weekend. (23/24 November 2013). Roads and Maritime Services has granted event organisers, NSW Water Ski Federation, an exclusive use aquatic licence to hold the event from 8am to 3pm on both days.... [more]
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Bubbles, breeze, roundups and parties for the Beneteau Cup
John Curnow,
The day started and ended with rain, but in between all that, there was a load of fun, some sun, copious amounts of breeze and a plethora of terrific prizes. Well done to all for being there, going racing, enjoying yourself come what may and digging deep for the Humpty Dumpty Foundation.... [more]
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Marina body gives 'clean' award to Middle Harbour Yacht Club
Marina Industries Association,
Sydney's Middle Harbour Yacht Club has today been accredited as a Level 3 ‘International Clean Marina' and in addition, awarded ‘Fish Friendly' status by the Marina Industries Association (MIA).... [more]
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