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Old 10-09-2010, 16:25   #46
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As to the question of standing offshore vs harbor-hopping, I'd suggest that this is best dictated by the prevailing conditions coupled with your fatigue level. For example, on a beam reach I would be more inclined to stand offshore, and on a deep broad reach I'd be more inclined to harbor hop because the latter set of conditions will generate more crew fatigue. One big factor I'd look at is whether the winds will be dying after sunset. Single-handing with the engine on sucks.
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Old 11-09-2010, 14:30   #47
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All I'm going to add to this one is that from what I've read and heard, it appears that sometimes all the alarms being set just right don't quite cut it because the person is so deeply asleep that he either ignores it, thinking the noise is part of a dream or he doesn't hear it at all.

To that end I would hook the alarm out put to a honking big amplifier with a real serious alarm sound to it. A real proper wake the dead alarm.


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Old 11-09-2010, 16:12   #48
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I havent read all 47 posts, but
I have seen an alarm set up for the AIS and it got me thinking that it could also be set up for other reasons.

A friend who is 79yo and sails alone - bought his 38' in Hawaii a few years ago and of course brought it back alone - well he has a yellow strobe on top of the mast at night. [He used to have a blue strobe until he was informed that this indicated a nuclear powered sub!!] He gets a VHF call, asks if there is any other traffic, then gets back to bed.

On the few occasions, when I have done solo trips, I use 2 cheap kitchen timers, and put one in my pocket and the other next to my ear. I set them for between 15 to 20 minutes. The sound and/or the vibration wakes me and I have a 360 look, reset them & then get back to sleep. This goes on 24/7, even if I am in the cockpit in daylight. The 15 min is as all know, about the time for a ship to get from the horizon to on top of you. I dont have AIS yet, but am not heading off again for years.

It does take me 2-3 days for my body to get used to the system, then its OK.

There is a lot of experience and great advice on CF- thanks to all
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Old 11-09-2010, 16:23   #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SabreKai View Post
All I'm going to add to this one is that from what I've read and heard, it appears that sometimes all the alarms being set just right don't quite cut it because the person is so deeply asleep that he either ignores it, thinking the noise is part of a dream or he doesn't hear it at all.

To that end I would hook the alarm out put to a honking big amplifier with a real serious alarm sound to it. A real proper wake the dead alarm.


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Two staements of yours, I take issue with. "What I've read" and "it appears".

Why in the world do you or anyone else think we singlehanders are stupid enough to endanger the lives of others or ourselves? Time after time someone post that a singlerhandler dosen't keep proper watxh. Oh really??
I think their wrong! I've lost track of the times I did 36 hours without sleep or went off-shore for safety's sake.
If you see a singlehandeler come into the anchorage, drop his anchor and go below with out refolding his sails, don't pester him until the next day, he's asleep!
regards John
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Old 12-09-2010, 08:26   #50
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It is not difficult to single-hand offshore safely. Using modern technology as your crewmate, you will be able to detect and get alerted of any activity within your area. Sleep patterns are established where you are constantly cat-napping around the clock. Maybe it is just statistical but I have seen more "couples" get into trouble than single-handers with hazards at sea. Close to islands you don't need to do more than an over-nighter to get from one island to the other and staying up is not a problem.
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Old 12-09-2010, 12:46   #51
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Maybe it is just statistical but I have seen more "couples" get into trouble than single-handers with hazards at sea.
There may be 10 couples for each singlehander. Hard to say what the statistics are (if there are any).

My observation is to the contrary - more singlehanders in trouble than couples.

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Old 12-09-2010, 13:01   #52
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There may be 10 couples for each singlehander. Hard to say what the statistics are (if there are any).

My observation is to the contrary - more singlehanders in trouble than couples.
The nice thing about doing passage-making as a couple is that I can stand watch all night, be relieved at sunup with a hot breakfast, and then sleep into the late afternoon while Wonderblond stands watch. Between when I wake up and when she goes to sleep we're sharing the watch duties. It's a far less fatiguing system than singlehanding, and I find that I'm far more alert at night, having rested during the day. This system works a lot better for us than a four-hour-on, four-hour-off watch system.

Maybe that's grist for a different thread? How couples stand watch? I keep hearing guys say, "When I'm sailing with my girlfriend, I'm essentially singlhanding." Huh? She can't at least look for other boats and monitor the instruments while you're napping?
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Old 12-09-2010, 13:06   #53
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In the context of the thread I think you plan for options even if you do not avail yourself of them. Single handing has clear limits that may or may not be well understood. No one can single hand a storm for protracted periods of time. Things can and do happen that were not expected. The planning of possible options is always a requirement. If you could have had an option and you didn't plan on it if required then you threw away something your were a fool to ignore. Having all the landfalls charted and investigated before the trip has no impact on how well you will do but it might allow you the chance to do something smarter when not doing so could be far worse.

There are no certain outcomes but you can play percentages and hedge the bets. It's the only advantage you can have alone. A communications system seems to be just too easy not to have.
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Old 12-09-2010, 15:10   #54
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As Pblais infers, if you plan properly you will have more time to deal with the unexpected. I am sure this is equally applicable to single or multi-handed crews. From personal experience I know that the more people on a boat the more variables are possible.
- - On one passage I had 3 "helpers" onboard and one was competent and the other two were real hazards. That introduced a whole spectrum of additional problems that needed to be planned for that I would not have had if single-handing. Taking care of the two incompetents and the ship is more work than just taking care of the ship.
- - However, when you do have a competent crew-mate, life is really a lot easier out on the oceans. My contention is that that competent crew-mate can just as easily be electronic as opposed to flesh and blood.
- - But the bottom line in all safety related activities is proper planning and consideration of what you will/could do in "non-normal" conditions. The more you plan and prepare properly the more boring the passage is - which is fine by me.
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Old 12-09-2010, 16:01   #55
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I'll give you my thoughts in a few days.
I am doing the Straits of Gibralter soon (they are 180 miles in front of me) I can see about 6 ships about me now, its night, I am 2 nms off the coast. The ships are in trffic lanes and I'll cross those lanes before dawn. But the actual Straits of Gib looks like a day time event at this stage... touch wood etc

And I am enjoying every moment of it!!!!!!!!


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Old 12-09-2010, 16:23   #56
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ensnada to san carlos is over 1500 miles. san carlos is inside the sea of cortez, up across from san felipe. use your charts-- your best path is from ensenada to turtle bay then tio mag bay then to la paz then around the corner finishing up with san carlos as san carlos is high up inside the sea of cortez--use your charts and do not enter strange harbors in darkness. do not sail within 10 miles of mexico--there are a lot of thing s ye dont wanna hit hiding there. friend was short handing an wanted to surf--he hit san ignacio beach in away he didnt really plan on and now has a different boat as his was destroyed. you do not want to sail close to shore,
there are sportfishers going down the coast using auto pilot and near missing sailboats as there is no one on watch--one missed us in a wood sloop in very deep dark by 10 ft. that is way too close. we were within 10 miles of shore.
be careful--is do able--just keep a good watch and find realistic places to sit if you are tired or in weather. bahia asuncion is not protected from southerlies
turtle bay is protected from northerlies and is a good anchorage. use your charts and have a safe and enjoyable trip.
i plan on sailing to guadalupe island then puerto escondido or mazatlan . from sin diego , guadalupe island is one tack (will take me 2 weeks , according to friends who have traversed this path many times..) then tack for la paz. i will check in at la paz or mazatlan, depending where i go.
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Old 12-09-2010, 23:01   #57
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Goodonya Mark
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Old 12-09-2010, 23:42   #58
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the mind

There is a huge psychological element here. Many people such as myself don't like to be alone incommunicado for a long time. I've solo-sailed only on day trips. I don't enjoy solo-backpacking beyond a two-day trip, so don't think I'd do well on an extended solo-cruise. I'd suggest short solo-sails until one knows he is comfortable on long solos.

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Old 13-09-2010, 00:13   #59
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There is a huge psychological element here. Many people such as myself don't like to be alone incommunicado for a long time. I've solo-sailed only on day trips. I don't enjoy solo-backpacking beyond a two-day trip, so don't think I'd do well on an extended solo-cruise. I'd suggest short solo-sails until one knows he is comfortable on long solos.
Great to see you out there!

In contrast, I really enjoy trekking alone. Here I am me on top of a mountain in Tasmania. Even out there in winter with a much more popular climb on the opposite range I still ran into the friendly couple who took this photo. The second shot is in memory of a young lady trekking alone on the same walk who has never been seen since. In the third shoot taken in the Barrington Tops NSW, I got caught in a hail storm before running almost in the dark to this hut where I was rained in for a day. I then finished the 3 day solo trek in torrential knee deep rain. Still, it was a challenging experience that is still fresh in my memory.

While some people might be asking “what the hell has this got to do with cruising offshore”, I still think it says something about the psychology, challenges, rewards and just as importantly dangers of doing almost any adventure/wilderness sport solo? Nevertheless, as I stated above, it is really up to the individual to add up their experience, preferences, equipment and the weather conditions (etc) before making the final decision?
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Old 12-01-2011, 16:47   #60
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I am a singlehander also and choosing a boat to move up to from my Tartan 34. There is precious little written about the Amazon 37. I am serious about a Tayana 37, but have always been interested in and Amazon 37. I have kind of ignored the model because of the high cost. I see now on Yachtworld a 37 in my price range $80-90K. I would love to hear your perspective on how these two match up.
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