Author Archives: Durango

Blue to New – Fall 2014

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Our 1981 Pearson, Blue Horizon, has found a new home as we transition to New Horizon, a 2005 Beneteau. They both are 10 meter (32 foot) yachts but the New Horizon offers a larger cockpit and cabin for your comfort and enjoyment. During our over 5 years of ownership, Blue Horizon was brought to life as many updates were made for safe passages to Annapolis, Bermuda, and places in between. There were lots of challenges and good memories. Our experience led to the beginning of Charleston Sail. Many of you shared in those adventures and our hope is you return to experience New Horizon. It is lighter and we can sail closer to the wind. We sail fun!

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Sailing in England – Summer 2014

Paul’s mother, sister, son, daughter, and grand children live in England. Mary Joan’s mother was a war bride. So together we have plenty of family in England. We now have a 27 foot Leisure which we call Blue Horizon and keep in Portsmouth England. We love getting out of the Charleston heat in August and enjoy the long days and cooler weather. Of greatest importance, we pass the family sailing tradition on. Pictures are from Portsmouth, the Solent, and the Isle of Wight.

Our Harbor Sailing Tours

Charleston Sail thanks all the adventurers aged 1 to 80 who have participated in our harbor sailing tours during our first year of operation: July 2012 to July 2013.

Charleston SC harbor sailing tours
A big thank you to our first 150 charter customers who bought 3 hour harbor tours and sailing lessons through our various internet sales promotions and personal referrals. We are excited to have had over 400 people sail with us so far in 2013. It has been a pleasure to show the ropes to many who were new to sailing. Aaron, one of our novice sailors, declared that she wanted to go out and buy a sail boat after one action packed sailing lesson in 18+ knot winds. Indeed 2 of our charter customers (Don and Rick) have done just that. Two of our younger guests, who are both 6 years old, did an impressive job at steering and soon were able to keep us on a straight course under sail and power, truly sailors in the making.

During most sailing tours we have observed dolphins and pelicans. On one occasion we stopped the boat for 10 minutes as we watched in amazement 12 dolphins circling around and hunting fish. Another time we had a group of 5 pelicans paddling after us hoping for a fishy handout, and then there was the day we observed a leatherback turtle swimming right next to us.

Gift certificates and weekend adventure Cruises are available.

A new foresail and spinnaker

new foresailAfter sailing through squalls on the way to Bermuda, I realized that my aging 150% genoa was just too big after, the trailing edge (the leach)  got shredded whilst I was struggling to furl it in a gust of wind. Later I spent 2 days sewing it back together.

Now Blue Horizon has a 110% genoa with a foot length of 16’ 9” compared to the old sail’s 21ft. It also means that when the wind picks up I can shrink it with the furler and  it will still retain it’s shape. Another advantage is that the sleeve of the storm jib will more easily fit over this smaller sail when in the furled position. The bigger genoa was just too bulky and made it hard to raise the storm jib. The other lesson I learnt was that we poorly equipped for light winds and  the big heavy main and genoa just flogged around making a lot of noise. I picked up a 38 ft spinnaker recently and bought a spinnaker sock (otherwise a snuffer) to handle it. I now look forward to ghosting along along with this large light weight sail in gentle 5 knot winds.

Yacht Delivery- Naples FL to Hilton Head SC

Yacht Delivery- Naples FL to Hilton Head SCA friend of ours from Naples FL called one day in early March to tell us about a sailor he had met that needed his recently purchased 37 ft sailboat “Bonaventure” delivered from Naples to Hilton Head SC. I jumped at the chance and having made arrangements with the new owner, left behind my supermarket deli job, and was off on the 600 mile drive in a rented car to join this Finnish built “Kaarina” pilot house cutter. When we arrived at Naples we had a couple days of scurrying around purchasing food and supplies for the voyage, and getting to know the layout of this unfamiliar vessel. We planned to sail from 8.00am to 6.30 pm each day and either anchor or tie up to a marina each night before sunset. The highlight was a glorious sail across Lake Okeechobee on my birthday and the low was later that day when we discovered a broken alternator belt and an oil leak.

We overcame these setbacks and finally arrived in Hilton Head after 10 days of motor sailing to a happy new boating family. I liked the convenience of a large screen Raymarine chartplotter, but disliked the slow pace of this heavy yacht under sail alone. I prefer an open cockpit with a bimini for shade to an enclosed pilot house which is more suitable for cold Northern climates.