The Preparation Continues

12th April 2022 – Dunstaffnage It’s day two of the annual maintenance. I’ve allowed a whole month this year to do all the painting and varnishing and have the boat launched. Maybe I can squeeze in a wee test sail too. Last year was pretty stressful trying to get everything complete in just three weeks. […]

The Preparation Begins!

11th April 2022 – Dunstaffnage I’ve arrived at the boat ready for a month’s solid work to get her expedition ready for the big Greenland trip. It was 20:00 by the time I got here after a very pleasant stop over at Ray and Jackie’s farmhouse in Yorkshire. I managed to find just enough space […]

Making a Scramble Net Cum Boarding Ladder – Part Two

I’ve finished the the Scramble Net cum Boarding Ladder! Ok, I haven’t tested it yet, so it could be a totally useless pile of junk but we shall find out in a few weeks when I hope to test it in the chilly London Docks. I was surprised how many things didn’t work. In the […]

High Latitude Expedition Insurance

14th March 2022 – London There are probably going to be two parts to insuring an expedition yachting trip heading for the high latitudes. Firstly, insuring the boat, and secondly insuring the crew for any potential search and rescue costs. Generally, this will involve two separate policies. Let’s start with the yacht. High Latitude Sailing […]

I’ve just built a Classic Wooden Drone!

It will fly at 24 feet above the deck and point in exactly the same direction as the boat. That is because it will be fixed to the upper spreaders! It is typical of a wooden boat owner to solve a technical problem with a piece of wood and six coats of varnish but at […]

New Toys – GME Epirb and Garmin Inreach Mini

5th February 2022 The 406 Epirb wasn’t really a new toy. My old GME Epirb’s battery had expired so it needed renewing. When I phoned Sartech they offered me a tempting upgrade to the version which has a built in GPS. It can save rescue time if the Epirb incorporates a GPS, so it seemed […]

Notes from my Expedition Journal – East Greenland 2019 – in the yacht Integrity

Notes from my Expedition Journal These are notes taken directly from my little waterproof notepad. I was invited as crew on Will Stirling’s splendid yacht “Integrity”. We were aiming for Scoresby Sund but for my second time we were thwarted by ice. Any additions or alterations to the original notes I have made in blue, […]

Laptops for Boats and Vans without spending a fortune!

14th December 2021 Rotherhithe Although I am more than happy to leave my laptop resting at home, there are certain voyages when they can be useful, or even virtually essential. I need one for my next trip to Greenland so that I can download ice charts and grib files*. I rather liked my old Toshiba […]

Scoresby Sund Expedition Update

Dunstaffnage 16th November 2021 A little bit of progress has been made but on lots of fronts. I’m currently up in Scotland carrying out a few little jobs on Sumara, most importantly winterising the engine but also a few domestic improvements like installing the diabolically expensive new sink pump. Running Rigging Back in town, I […]

Ice Reports

Ullapool Scoresbysund is often blocked by ice even in the summer. In order to approach we need good up to date ice reports as a 26ft wooden boat isn’t exactly an ice breaker. We need to thank John and Phyllis from Morgans Cloud (excellent website for Arctic Sailing) for the method and also Gerry, Samantha […]