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#CRUISING – The Cruising Club of America (CCA) has awarded its esteemed 2011 Blue Water Medal to Thies Matzen and Kicki Ericson for a commendable 24 years and 135,000 miles of sailing the oceans of the world with a focus in the high latitudes of the Southern Ocean. The first Blue Water Medal was awarded in 1923; and is given to "the most meritous example of seamanship." Its recipient is selected from among amateurs of all the nations." The medal will be presented by Commodore Daniel P. Dyer, III at the annual Awards Dinner on March 2, 2012 at New York Yacht Club in Manhattan.

Matzen was born in Germany in 1956 and grew up to be a wooden boat builder. In 1981,Matzen purchased Wanderer III, a 30 foot wooden sloop, built in 1952 for Eric and Susan Hiscock who made two circumnavigations with it and received the Blue Water Medal in 1955.Matzen sailed Wanderer III to Scandinavia where he cruised extensively, including to the Lofoten Islands (Norway), and then crossed the Atlantic Ocean. In 1989, while sailing in the Caribbean, he met Swedish-born (1964) Ericson, and the two have lived on Wanderer III ever since. After leaving the Caribbean, the duo sailed through the Panama Canal and into the Pacific Ocean where they spent seven years traveling from site to site. After that, Ericson and Matzen sailed to Indonesia, explored the Indian Ocean, and sailed around the Cape of Good Hope (South Africa).

From 1997 to 1999, Matzen and Ericson did two circuits of the South Atlantic, starting in Cape Town (South Africa) and visiting Argentina, The Falkland Islands, and South Georgia before heading back to Cape Town (South Africa) and South America, where they rounded Cape Horn before returning to the Pacific. The couple's last twelve years have been comprised of exploring sites in the Southern Ocean, including Tasmania, The Auckland Islands, Antarctica and the Falkland Islands. Recently the two spent 26 months in South Georgia. Currently, Matzen and Ericson are in Brazil and plan to do some work on Wanderer III, which has been kept in its original condition with no electronics onboard except a VHF radio and handheld GPS (added in 2007). The vessel has a 16 horsepower diesel engine and the hull, rigging and gear have been self-maintained using traditional methods.

In addition to presenting its Blue Water Medal, the CCA will present the following 2011 Awards:

Far Horizons Award awarded to Brian and Mary Alice O'Neill (Bainbridge Island, WA) for an admirable 25-month cruise circumnavigating the Pacific Rim, North Pacific Ocean on their 44-foot Robert Perry Designed sloop Shibui. En route the two delivered school supplies to those in need and toured WWII sites.

Richard S. Nye Trophy awarded to Gary Jobson (Annapolis, Md.) for sharing with the club his meritorious service, racing, and statesmanship in the affairs of international yachting.

Rod Stephens Trophy awarded to Bob Arzbaecher (Milwaukee, Wisc.) and the crew of the Beneteau 40.7 Sociable for their dramatic rescue of the crew of the Kiwi 35 WingNuts during the Chicago Yacht Club's 103rd Race to Mackinac held this past July.

Published in Cruising
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#CRUISING – On the first day of the London Boat Show the Cruising Association's Patron, Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, welcomed Eric Roberts as the 4,000th member of the Association.

Eric, 57, lives in Shenfield, Essex, and was introduced to the Cruising Association by his sister Eileen and her husband Chris Wintrell who bought Michael Buerk's boat 'Airwaves of London'. "They are quite active CA members and recommended it to me enthusiastically" said Eric. Although Eric has sailed since the age of eight, he is awaiting delivery of his first boat, a Beneteau Oceanis 45, which is due to be launched in March. He plans to sail the new yacht through the Mediterranean from France to Gocek in Turkey. After a year or two, Eric's dream, once he has built up enough experience, is to sail to the Caribbean.

CAMember

The 4,000th CA Member, Eric Roberts, is welcomed by fellow members (l to r) Paul Chandler, Patron Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, Rachel Chandler, and President Stuart Bradley.

What does Eric hope to gain from membership of the CA? First of all, he points out, his subscription has already more than paid for itself, earning him 5% discount on his annual berth at Gocek. He plans to use the members' website for passage planning information and also has ideas about using the Association's Crewing Service to help him look for crew. "And it will be great to see the burgee on other boats and go over and say hello".

Stuart Bradley, CA President, commented: "Welcoming Eric as the 4000th member is the climax of a very successful 12 months during which the Association increased its membership by a record 14%. We're seeing an increase in the number of UK-based sailors who keep their boats overseas, and also in members who don't have a boat and want to increase their experience by crewing for others."

"For many years the CA has been the cruising world's best kept secret. More people are now realising that we're like a world-wide local yacht club. Through electronic communication, our ever-expanding website, special interest Sections, and a network of Local Representatives in the popular cruising areas of the world, we can provide information and encouragement to cruising sailors wherever they live or cruise. We help to make members' dreams real."

 

Published in Cruising

#CLYDE – The first of the Clyde Cruising Club's Sailing Directions to be published under the Imray imprint is the 148 page Firth of Clyde book. The book is in fact the merger of Martin Lawrence's Yachtsman's Pilot series with the Clyde Cruising club's sailing and directions and anchorages. Whilst the familiar CCC format has been left unchanged, this major new edition incorporates material from Lawrence's Yachtsman's Pilot series. With redrawn plans, new ground level and aerial photographs, and a completely updated text this new edition offers the Clyde yachtsmen the best pilotage that is available.

Firth of Clyde extends beyond its titled area to the coast of Northern Ireland (Rathlin Island to Belfast Lough) and on the Scottish side southwards from Stranraer to Portpatrick and beyond to the Solway Firth and Cumbria.

Published in Coastal Notes
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#ARC – The 26th Atlantic Rally for Sailing Cruisers (ARC) finished in fine style on Saturday 17 December with a spectacular prize giving ceremony at the Gaiety Nightclub in Gros Islet, Saint Lucia.  2011 was a vintage ARC, with most boats experiencing fast crossing times - the ARC crossing record almost tumbled after standing unchallenged since 2006.

Classic Crossing

After a downwind start in perfect conditions in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, the 217 yachts, including a record-breaking 31 multihulls, headed south and then west across the Atlantic towards Rodney Bay, Saint Lucia.  Classic trade wind conditions provided exciting downwind sailing, with the Franco-Russian team on super-maxi Med Spirit finishing in 11 days and 14 hours; only 9 hours outside the ARC crossing record set by Capricorno (ITA) in 2006.  Following Med Spirit over the line was trimaran Rayon Vert (FRA), Gunboat 66 Phaedo (USA), ex-Whitbread maxi Rothmans (SWE) then Open 40 Vaquita (AUT) - these five boats finishing within 13 days and almost 3 days ahead of the next bunch of finishers.

Most of the fleet experienced a 'wind hole' as they closed Saint Lucia, leaving some boats becalmed and chasing the lightest of breezes or resorting to the motor.  Line honours prizes for boats crossing the line first in their division without motoring were awarded to Med Spirit (FRA), Rayon Vert (FRA), Vaquita (AUT), Hassebas (NED) and Dantés (GER).  The overall Cruising Division prize for calculated results was awarded to Standfast 56 Splendid (NED) skippered by Kees-Jan Baartmans, and vintage Oyster Lightwave 48 Scarlet Oyster (GBR) skippered by Ross Applebey, won the RORC Racing Division.

Spirit of the ARC

While the fastest finishers are always newsworthy, most of the ARC fleet are family cruisers.  The contributions made by a wide range of sailors are recognised during the prize giving, with special awards including the Spirit of the ARC Award.  This was awarded to Stuart Letton and the crew of Time Bandit (GBR) for their enthusiasm for ARC activities and involvement in all aspects of the rally.  Christof Petter and the crew of Vaquita (AUT) won the Eric Jean Trophy for their work in raising awareness for the Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society.

There were awards for the youngest skipper, 24 year old Lucy Reynolds on Northern Child (GBR) and the oldest skipper, 78 year old Juan Egido from Peru on Nandina.  The youngest sailor was 5 year old Aksel Skogseth Berg on Perle (NOR).

The most beautiful yacht was voted to be bright orange Gunboat 66 Phaedo (USA) and the prize for oldest was won by 75 year old Cruinneag III (GBR).  The Philip Hitchcock Award for safety was won by Hunny Pot (GBR) for impressing the safety equipment inspectors in Las Palmas.

There were awards for the blogs submitted to the ARC website while the boats were at sea, with 108 boats submitting blogs in 9 different languages; awards for fishing prowess; and prizes for the best wall paintings made in Las Palmas.

Finishers

Of the 217 boats that set off from Las Palmas de Gran Canaria on 20 November, 215 crossed the Atlantic successfully (two retired to the Canaries) and 214 crossed the finish line in Rodney Bay, Saint Lucia.  Damages were limited to blown sails, a few broken booms and two broken forestays, but all of the damaged boats were able to finish.  The organisers and participants were deeply saddened to learn on 8 December of the sudden death from suspected heart attack of Andrew Nash, who was sailing on Ocean Wanderer.

ARC2011 Prizes

Spirit of the ARC Award: Time Bandit (GBR) Stuart Letton & crew

Eric Jean Trophy for services to humanity and environment:  Vaquita (AUT) Christof Petter

Arch Jean Trophy for contribution to shoreside activities: Chiscos (GBR) John Simpson & crew

Yachting World Trophy for line honours Division I (Cruising):  Dantés (GER) Swan 48

Jimmy Cornell Trophy for overall winner Division I (Cruising):  Splendid (NED) Standfast 56

Line honours Division II (Racing) and winner Class A:  Vaquita (AUT) Akilaria 40

Overall winner Division II (Racing) and winner Class B:  Scarlet Oyster (GBR) Oyster 48

Digicel Trophy for line honours Division VII (Invitation): Hassebas (NED) Shipman 63

Rodney Bay Marina Trophy for winner Division VII (Invitation): Triumph (SWE) Baltic 64

Line Honours Division VIII (Invitation Racing):  Med Spirit (FRA) super-maxi

Overall winner Division VIII (Invitation Racing): One Hull (GBR) Challenge 72

Overall winner Division IV (Multihulls):  Blue Ocean (POL) Lagoon 560

Line Honours Division V (Open):  Rayon Vert (FRA) Lerouge 50 trimaran

Division I (Cruising) Class winners:

Class A - Prime Minister's Trophy:  Gunvør XL (CAN) X-55

Class B - Saint Lucia Tourist Board Trophy:  Chosen One (GBR) Dufour 45e

Class C - Saint Lucia Hotel & Tourism Trophy: Meneldor (NED) Hallberg Rassy 54

Class D - Saint Lucia Ministry of Tourism Trophy:  Capraia III (NOR) Sweden 45

Class E - Gran Canaria Trophy:   Splendid (NED) Standfast 56

Class F - Windward & Leeward Trophy:   Dantés (GER) Swan 48

Class G - Adlard Coles Trophy:  Eagle's Gift (ESP) Swan 42

Class H - Saint Lucia Air & Seaports Authority Trophy: Halcyon of Hebe (GBR) Hylas 44

Published in Cruising
Tagged under
1st December 2011

Sailing the Bay of Biscay

#CRUISING–The Cruising Association, Britain's organisation for cruising sailors, is opening its doors to non-members in January for a guide to sailing the many stunning destinations in the Bay of Biscay.

The CA says the area has an unfair reputation for rough seas and although it can be testing, with careful planning and sensible precautions, there are some truly stunning and uncrowded destinations awaiting discovery.

Judith Grimwade, Secretary of the CA's Biscay section says "Mention Biscay to most sailors and they start to twitch, but from the rivers north of the Loire to the Spanish Rias there are some amazing destinations which are generally much less busy than some of the over-crowded channel ports and harbours. Our members have cruised these waters for years and know the secrets of what to do and what to avoid. They have amassed a wealth of practical and in-depth knowledge of the area and they'll be sharing this with non-members as well as members at this special Biscay Day."

The day includes illustrated talks by CA experts and will cover the route options of crossing from France to Spain including tips on how to make the journey by coastal hopping. There's a comprehensive guide to the Spanish Rias, the sheltered and amazingly attractive inlets on Spain's north-west coast. There's also a guide to the sheltered and attractive rivers north of the Loire and a practical step-by-step guide to the French Atlantic coast.

The CA's Specialist Biscay Day will be held at the CA's headquarters in Limehouse Basin, 1 Northey Street, London, E14 8BT on January 15th and starts at 12 noon. The cost, £27 for members and £35 for non-members, includes a hot buffet 2 course supper. Places are limited and will be allocated on a first-come first-served basis.

Published in Cruising
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Following the levying of substantial fines on foreign yachtsmen, much pressure has recently been brought to bear on the Norwegian Ministry of Finance and the Norwegian Customs to amend draconian regulations relating to owners of foreign flagged vessels who wish to over-winter in Norway.
On 5th October 2011 the Norwegian Directorate of Customs and Excise amended the rules so that foreign boat owners can lay up their boats in private marinas for up to one year. (An extension for a further year will probably also be possible). Boat owners must apply to Norwegian Customs and Excise (Tollvesenet) for permission beforehand,. A special application form for boat storage has been drawn up. Currently this form is available only in Norwegian but an English version will be produced shortly.
Information about the new regulations and submitting applications can be obtained from the appropriate Customs Region. Norwegian Customs website is www.toll.no (also in English).
Norwegian yachtsmen have been at the forefront of the protest but overseas yachting organisations have also made representations to the Norwegian authorities. Foremost among these has been the UK's Cruising Association (CA). The CA's Honorary Local Representative in Oslo, Hans Jakob Valderhaug has worked tirelessly on behalf of members in close co-operation with the Association's Baltic Section Secretaries, Graham and Fay Cattell who comment: "This change in the law is a triumph for common sense and we are delighted that our members will be able to enjoy longer visits to Norway's beautiful coast without worry or penalty".
Skippers will no longer be forced to set out from Norway in inclement weather at the end of the season but can now legally leave their boats for the winter. Neither will they have to stump up a (refundable) deposit equal to the 25% VAT on the value of their boat plus a percentage tax for engine and refrigeration equipment.

Published in Cruising
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The Cruising Association, Britain's leading organisation for cruising sailors, is to launch a new specialist section for those who cruise Northern France and the Channel Islands.

The new section will be launched at the association's headquarters, CA House, in London's Limehouse on Sunday October 30th. and covers the French coast from Dunkerque in the east to Portsall in the west, including the Channel Islands.

The inaugural meeting is open to non-members as well as members and will include talks by experts on crossing the Channel, sailing the Brittany coast and the Channel Islands.

Judith Grimwade, the CA's Chair of Sections Group says, "There are thousands of people who cruise the waters of Northern France and the Channel Islands, or would like to, and this new section has been designed for them. Not only does it provide a one-stop-shop for up-to-date information on sailing in the area but also there are experts on hand to give advice on everything from where to moor to which restaurants serve the best Moules Frites. Section members also benefit from discounts on products and services as well as the invaluable local knowledge provided by our team of Honorary Local Representatives (HLRs). A programme of events is in preparation."

Published in Cruising
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Forty cruising boats will sail up the river Liffey to spend a night near the the replica famine ship Jeanie Johnston. The East Link bridge will lift and the Samuel Beckett bridge will swing open at noon on Saturday 24 September.

The boats are mostly modest sailing yachts with some motor cruisers, typically eight to twelve metres long with up to six people aboard. They come from ports on the East coast of Ireland between Arklow and Skerries.

The sailors will spend the afternoon visiting other boats, renewing friendships and comparing notes. Some will use the opportunity to explore the city centre from this unusual perspective.

There are organised visits to the Jeanie Johnston and the Guinness Storehouse. A special attraction this year is a guided tour of the docks in an inflatable boat, by Sea Safari.

In the evening the whole group, about a hundred people, will gather for dinner in a nearby hotel. Formalities will be limited to a review of the season in general and the summer cruise in Strangford Lough, but the party is likely to continue until late.

Most sailors will spend the night aboard their boats. On Sunday morning commodore Derek Harris will say mass aboard the Jeanie Johnston. The bridges will open once more at noon, and the fleet will disperse to their home ports.

This annual event is organised by the Cruising Association of Ireland with the co-operation of the Dublin Docklands Development Authority and Dublin Corporation.

The Cruising Association of Ireland supports and represents the cruising community in Ireland, both power and sail (www.cruising.ie). Contact Derek Harris 087 6740334 [email protected], or Simon Parker 0872497859 [email protected]


Published in Cruising
Ireland's largest cruiser hire company is set to move into waterways north of the border next year.
Carrickcraft – which for 30 years has provided cruising holidays on the Shannon and the Erne - has plans to operate a small fleet of hire-boats on the Lower Bann in 2012.
The company will initially operate three Kilkenny Class cruisers (2 + 4 berth) and three Carlow Class cruisers (2 + 2 berth) from new pontoons at Coleraine Town Centre Marina.
According to Carrickcraft, a seven-day holiday on the Bann would allow travellers to see all of the river and have some extra time to discover the hinterland.
Carrickcraft MD John Morton said: “We are delighted to be able to open a fourth Irish base and to bring more tourists to the region. We are fully committed to the project and hope to increase the fleet size in the future.
"Having travelled along the Lower Bann myself, it is great to be able to open up such a wonderful waterway to a larger public.”
The first boats will arrive early in the New Year ahead of the summer season from March to October 2012.
For booking enquiries contact the sales office at 028 3834 4993. For more details visit www.cruise-ireland.com

Ireland's largest cruiser hire company is set to move into waterways north of the border next year.

Carrickcraft – which for 30 years has provided cruising holidays on the Shannon and the Erne - has plans to operate a small fleet of hire-boats on the Lower Bann in 2012.

The company will initially operate three Kilkenny Class cruisers (2 + 4 berth) and three Carlow Class cruisers (2 + 2 berth) from new pontoons at Coleraine Town Centre Marina.

According to Carrickcraft, a seven-day holiday on the Bann would allow travellers to see all of the river and have some extra time to discover the hinterland. 

Carrickcraft MD John Morton said: “We are delighted to be able to open a fourth Irish base and to bring more tourists to the region. We are fully committed to the project and hope to increase the fleet size in the future. 

"Having travelled along the Lower Bann myself, it is great to be able to open up such a wonderful waterway to a larger public.”

The first boats will arrive early in the New Year ahead of the summer season from March to October 2012. 

For booking enquiries contact the sales office at 028 3834 4993. For more details visit www.cruise-ireland.com.

Published in Inland Waterways
Watersports holidays at home make the perfect family getaway, according to The Irish Times.
The paper recently rounded up some of the best spots for making a splash with the kids – such as surfing, diving and cliff jumping in Donegal, and sailing and cruising in Kinsale - and all at prices that won't push the budget.
The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.

Watersports holidays at home make the perfect family getaway, according to The Irish Times.

The paper recently rounded up some of the best spots for making a splash with the kids – such as surfing, diving and cliff jumping in Donegal, and sailing and cruising in Kinsale - and all at prices that won't push the budget.

The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.

Published in Aquatic Tourism
Page 13 of 20

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