The best path to ground is how one lessens the likelihood of a strike blowing a hole in the hull
or blasting the mast
through the bottom. The pointed rod on top, (with or without "Ion dissipater" bristles) takes the hit, and the mast conducts it to your ground plate or better yet, metal hull
, with an 00 size wire. Also grounding the metal rigging
and LARGE metal parts
, adds to the safety
, and lessens side flashes. The above has been the standard for many years, and there is no controversy about it among scientist who are experts in the field.
No, the above does not make you MORE likely to be hit, in that having the metal stick up there alone, is invitation enough!
Protecting your electronics from inducted damage with a Faraday cage should work, but is highly impractical! I keep a small spare GPS
in a thick wrap of aluminum
foil, away from other metal, but have no idea if it helps.
The jury is out regarding "Ion Dissipaters". They HAVE been proven effective on all the Cell towers in the world, for whatever that's worth. We have the expensive one with over 1000 points.
DOZENS of boats, trees, and docks around us , as well as the water
itself, has been hit over the last 15 years. We have been spared however! Could be luck? If we do get hit and survive, the rig & hull will very likely be intact!
We have lost a few electronics due to these close calls however. Just like hand grenades: "Close is goodenuf".