Browsing: On Watch

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Vesper, a Nordhavn 68, Cruises to Greenland and Iceland with a Husband and Wife Crew By Peter A. Janssen Here’s a view you don’t see very often – the entrance to Prince Christian Sound in Greenland from the helm of a Nordhavn 68. This particular Nordhavn 68, Vesper, was well traveled even before it cruised into Greenland and Iceland. Indeed, Bob and Kathy Valleau, the owners, originally climbed on the boat when it was commissioned at Nordhavn’s headquarters in Dana Point, California, in November, 2015. Then, with a Nordhavn delivery captain, they cruised down to Mexico, the Panama Canal, the…

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Joe Blanchard Has Just About Done It All on His Red Grand Banks 36, but He’s Still Going Strong By Peter A. Janssen If you’ve been cruising anywhere in the eastern half of the United States or Canada in the past few years, you’ve probably run across Joe Blanchard on his red-hulled Grand Banks 36 Firebird. Blanchard has pretty much done it all, mostly singlehanded – the Great Loop, the Down East Loop, the Small Triangle Loop. And he’s still going strong, heading south from the Hudson River for Florida, the Bahamas, maybe Cuba. Now retired after a career in…

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Veteran Cruisers Ship Kadey-Krogen 48 from Florida to the Pacific Northwest, Start New Journey By Peter A. Janssen Ever since they bought their new Kadey-Krogen 48 Idyll Time in 2006, Jeff and Suzie Parker have pursued an active cruising life from their home in Chattanooga, Tennessee. They’ve done the Great Loop, they’ve gone up and down the East Coast, they’ve become familiar with most of the stops on the Intracoastal Waterway. “Traveling up and down the ICW has become routine,” Parker wrote in his blog this spring. So they decided to expand their horizons – a long way – shipping…

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Claret Red? Awlcraft Shark? Owners Make Individual Statements Even on Traditional Down East Boats By Peter A. Janssen Most Sabre Yachts, of course, come with blue hulls, in keeping with their classic, Down East heritage. But times may be changing. We couldn’t resist a second, or third, look at this new Sabre 45, photographed by our friend Billy Black, off Nahant, Mass., on the North Shore above Boston. The hull is Claret Red. The picture reminded me of the color of hull number one of Dirigo, the 66-foot Sabre flagship, which was an eye-opening combination of blue and gray with…

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Long-Time Boaters Take First Extended Cruise on Back Cove 37. Want To Keep Going By Peter A. Janssen After cruising in the Great Lakes for 34 years, Mike and Melodie Kapolka pretty much know what they like (Georgian Bay and the North Channel are at the top of their list). But now that they have a Back Cove 37, their largest boat so far, they’re taking their first extended cruise, and they like it so much they’re planning for more. The Kapolkas are fairly typical of American cruising couples. They started boating from their home port in Algonac, Michigan, on…

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We Test New MJM 35Z with Twin Outboards. WOW! By Peter A. Janssen It was a Chamber of Commerce summer morning when we headed out of Newport Shipyard on Zinnia, hull number one of the new MJM 35Z, with a beautiful light blue sky, the wind coming in from the ocean at an easy 15 knots or so, the waves on Narragansett Bay just about two feet with gentle, breaking, white foam on top. Leaving the dock, Bob Johnstone, the founder of MJM Yachts (and J/Boats before that), turned the teak joystick under his left hand and walked the boat…

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Volvo Turns to Outboards. Are Hybrids Next? Will your transom look like this, with a total of 2,508 horsepower coming from four Seven Marine outboards? Well, the answer is yes, if Volvo Penta has anything to say about it. Volvo just announced that it is entering the rapidly growing outboard market by buying the majority stake in Seven Marine, which Volvo Penta President Bjorn Ingemanson calls “the leader in the high-powered outboard market.” In a conference call, Ron Huibers, president of Volvo Penta of the Americas, said, “Now the idea is to make some of the most exciting outboards ever…

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After The Loop and 25,000 miles, The Coles and My Dream Are “Not Done Yet” Ted and Sue Cole of Placerville, California, just crossed their wake in Dania Beach, Florida, completing the Great Loop around the eastern half of the United States. That, of course, is a major achievement, but it’s not singular. After all, 127 other boats completed the Loop last year alone. But what is unusual, is that the Coles only cruised part of the time, taking seven years on the Loop from start to finish. And even then they managed to put in side trips to Mexico,…

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After 35,000 Miles, The Ullmanns Are Just Getting Started So far, Jennifer and Mark Ullmann have put about 35,000 nautical miles on Starlet, their 17-year-old Nordhavn 46, and they’re just warming up. Right now, they’re in the Marquesas in French Polynesia, deep in the South Pacific (pictured above), and that’s about half way ‘round in their planned circumnavigation. Until about ten years ago, the Ullmanns were living traditional lives on land, although they both loved diving and had a 24-foot dive boat in the Florida Keys. Then, after a bad day at work, they were having dinner in a Thai…

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Mackinac Island: A Laid-Back Boating Haven on the Great Lakes Little changed since 1897, when the town leaders banned automobiles (they scared the horses), Mackinac Island, at the top of Lake Huron and just around the corner from the top of Lake Michigan, is perhaps the leading summer destination in the Midwest, and certainly is one of the most picturesque in the United States. With its own marina on the historic island, and two more nearby, it’s also a major boating destination, and that’s before you count the 320 sailboats that will arrive there from Chicago at the end of…

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