ActiveCaptain – Into the Mystic —

Fog on the water and how to handle as safely as possible. From

— Into the Mystic —

In our early days of cruising, we had taken a weekend cruise in Maine.
We arrived back on our mooring and spent the night on the boat to have
one more night onboard before heading home. In the morning, we awoke to
solid, pea soup fog. Something any Maine boater is used to.

It was a 3/4 mile straight line trip from our mooring to the town dock.
Full of confidence, we boarded our 13′ Whaler with no GPS, compass, or
smartphone. Heck, it was a straight shot, all we had to do was run the
boat straight ahead. Even if we missed the dinghy dock, once we saw
shore, we would simply adjust our course.

Of course, we also had to avoid other boats. With Jeff steering a
straight line at idle speed, Karen’s job was to sit at the bow listening
for boats. We puttered along and within a couple of minutes, we crossed a
boat wake.

"Karen, where is that boat!" And then we saw our own boat emerge from the
fog, sitting on the mooring. We had gone in a complete circle. The wake
was our own wake from the Whaler. We returned to the big boat, grabbed
a handheld compass, and safely made it to the dinghy dock.

This time of year, fog is common. Warm, moist air passes over colder
bodies of water and fog forms. We were in fog along the Rhode Island
coast ourselves today for 7 hours.

Here’s some of the things we’ve learned from 20 years of boating in

– Wait to take off. Wait a day if needed. You can afford to lose a day
or two.

– Slow down. Slow way down.

– Use radar. Red Head has a Garmin 12kw GMR xHD2 open array. It is
wonderful. But here’s the thing – don’t wait until you’re in the middle
of fog to use it. We’ve spent many hours with every radar we’ve owned on
beautiful clear days learning how boats, buoys, and land appear. We’ve
played with all the settings, gains, and noise reductions to know how to
make best use of the features when we really need them.

– All hands on deck. Everyone onboard has a window to look out along
with extra attention to sounds from other boats.

– Use your horn if there is very poor visibility. While underway, we use
one prolonged blast every 2 minutes especially when radar targets are
showing up. And to be honest, we always feel dumb doing it. It’s like
we’re the only ones out there blasting the horn. So help us out – sound
your horn too. It helps.

– We have every boat movement planned as routes. It takes the steering
decision out of play – anyone at the helm can just keep the boat on the
line. Deviations from the line happen to avoid obstacles.

Lastly, we never, ever board our dinghy without a VHF and smartphone
capable of providing a compass or a moving map to help guide us, even
if it’s just in a straight line.

*Into the Mystic
Copyright (c) Warner/Chappell Music, Inc.

— Defender 1st —

This week’s Defender 1st special is a wee bit different. Rather than one
or two items, it features a fantastic value on over (25) select Robship
products. ActiveCaptain members are getting the first offering of these
items at the discounted prices.

Choose select products from the following categories:
Gear Bags
Deck & Cockpit Organizers
Hatch Covers
Vang & Turnbuckle Covers
Weatherproof Blankets
Chart Bags

All Robship products are made with the utmost care using high quality
materials. Robship’s high attention to detail and design means they are
products that will last.

These select closeout items are offered this week at 40% off
Defender’s already low regular prices. But hurry!

These products are only available while supplies last and all sales are

Note: Defender has a $25 per order minimum. After the 40% discount
many of the Robship items will fall below the $25 minimum.

Check out all the details and get the AC code at the link below.

(25+) Select Robship products: 40% off Defender’s regular price

Special ends: July 25, 2017 at 11:59 PM ET

Get the special price and learn more at:

With all of these great items you are sure to find something to suit
your cruising needs. But don’t delay, supplies are limited.

Remember – Defender 1st: one product, one week, one incredible price.

When you’re thinking about purchasing boating supplies, think of
Defender first.

Dylan and Dee Dee have finally made it to Boston and they are taking the
town by storm. Well, at least the nearby dog park. The whole crew is
happy to be back in New England and looking forward to seeing friends
both old and new. Follow along with Dylan and Dee Dee’s adventures on
their blog:

Karen and Jeffrey Siegel
Red Head
Key Largo, FL
sharing the experience
Social Navigation for Active Captains

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