Archive | Seamanship


Why we make dumb mistakes

We have two parallel nervous systems, two brains, each with their strengths and weaknesses, complimentary when they work properly together.  Certain kinds of errors reoccur predictably because of these hardwired weaknesses, hence the dumb mistakes.  As with any tool, learning how our two brains work will get you better results. The first is the conscious […]

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Chartplotter hides an island

Chartplotters are wonderful, I love ‘em, but they have their quirks that can lead to tense moments or leaving bottom paint in all the wrong places. In northern BC I found this isolated rock that rises abruptly several hundred feet from the prevailing Troup Passage bottom. The plotter display to the left, at a scale […]

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Boats Dying By Moonlight

It’s an eery thing to watch a boat die by moonlight. Any time, if you are not accustomed to such things, it is jarring to see any vessel in extremis… the carefully designed lines canted at odd angles, water invading places where no water should be. But by the light of a full moon, further […]

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Radar practice

Teaching a radar seminar the other night I realized all of us who teach radar finish with “ultimately the only way to learn is to go out and try it”. Turns out there are a couple of reasons why this admonition applies so much to radar. It reminds me of learning to fly an airplane […]

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