Monday, February 28, 2011

A Very Busy Sailing Report

What an exciting time to be following the sport of sailing… so much has been happening that it is hard to keep track of it all.

By Sean McQuilken
Special to the Daily Boater

The America's Cup in San Francisco. Photo: © Gilles Martin-Raget /
The dates for the America’s Cup 2011-2012 World Series were announced; this event will be sailed on the AC 45 Catamaran. The venues will be announced soon but speculation is that there will be at least one event in the following areas:
Europe (probably Valencia, Spain or Italy), Asia, Northeastern US (probably Newport), Australia or New Zealand and finally San Francisco.
Race Dates and More Sailing News

We All Get Heavier As We Age - And So Do Our Boats!

We keep getting reminded that we are getting heavier as we get older.

Guest blog by Vincent Pica
Chief of Staff, First District, Southern Region (D1SR)
United States Coast Guard Auxiliary

No matter where we turn, someone is telling us that we are getting fat and need to be thinner!

What's on your boat? © istockphoto/Tammy Ross
Guess what? So are our boats! Yes, as boats get older, they get heavier and that has a lot to do about being less “sea-kindly” and more “tender” as they get older (and our reflexes get slower – not a particularly good combination.) With fuel getting more expensive as the Mideast roils again, here are some examples of how the boat is getting heavier – and more expensive to drive…

New Stuff…
We add things to our boat that weren’t there when we bought it. An ice chest may be added so we don’t have to lug one from the car… We add an additional ice chest so we can bring more ice so we can stay out longer and catch more fish (hopefully!)… We pile up the cuddy cabin, a.k.a., the boat’s attic, with safety and fishing equipment so we don’t have to lug them from the car…

Friday, February 25, 2011

Shipping up to Boston

Our Sea Song of the Week is a little something to get our friends and neighbors in New England pumped for the big boat show in Boston this weekend.

Each week we post a nautical tune to help you get your weekend off to a great start, even if you can't get out on the boat. And with the New England Boat Show (NEBS) going on this week, and the stormy weather in the area, we couldn't think of a better shanty-like song than I'm Shipping Up to Boston from the Dropkick Murphys.

NEBS claims to have become the biggest boat show in the northeast, and is certainly the biggest winter boat show in New England. We'll be there with our friends from Boat Name Gear, who, rumour has it, will be giving away boat loads of personalized gear.

Now, back to our Sea Song of the Week...

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Sailing Report: 15 Short Miles

The Barcelona World Race, featuring two-crew teams sailing around the planet, is getting tight as the competitors head across the Pacific for Cape Horn

The French team aboard Virbac-Paprec 3 holds onto the lead. Barcelona World Race ©

Fifteen miles could be considered a long distance, but it’s all relative. When you’ve spent nearly two months traveling more than 16,000 miles, 15 miles isn’t that far at all. And 15 miles is the distance between separates team MAPFRE and leaders Virbac-Paprec 3 in the Barcelona World Race. Team NEUTROGENA, which includes the only American in the race, Ryan Breymaier, has moved up to 4th from 7th place where they were when we last reported on the Barcelona.


Boat Shows in Boston and Beyond

We'll be in Boston for the New England Boat Show beginning on Saturday as the winter boat show season winds down.

The Spirit of Boston at the last Boston Boat Show
The winter boat show season's last hurrah begins this weekend, with boat shows around the world, the biggest being in Boston, Ottawa and probably Moscow. Reports from other boat shows this year have been encouraging for the economy - just last weekend, Miami reported a significant increase in attendance over last year's boat show. (See our pictures from opening day of last weekend's Miami Boat Show on the FirstBoat page on Facebook.)

Exhibitors are displaying new products this year and offering great deals - a winning combination if you are thinking of buying a boat or boating accessories any time soon.

Be in Boston
Our friends from will be at the New England Boat Show all next week in Boston, beginning this Saturday, at the BCEC. To help make the show a success, BoatNameGear is giving away a $200 gift certificate which you can register for in the show lobby, and they are holding an additional $100 contest at their booth. You can win both. More details about this show are available here.

Keep reading for free stuff just for FirstBoat fans, and to find out about other boat shows this weekend - there may be one near you!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Review: BoatUS iPhone and Droid App

New smartphone app connects boaters to critical services and other boaters

Photo © Nautical Sites Media
When BoatUS announced last week that they came out with a new smart phone app for boaters, we had to check it out. We downloaded the app for the Droid (it’s also available on the iPhone) and played around with the program’s features to see if they live to the hype of the company’s announcement.

In many ways they do, especially given the app's price - it's free.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

GPS & The Sun

Solar flares are coming. Will GPS ever be the same?

Guest blog by Vincent Pica
Chief of Staff, First District, Southern Region (D1SR)
United States Coast Guard Auxiliary

The Valentine’s Day Solar Flare. Image courtesy of NASA / Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO)
Over the years, I’ve written quite a bit about GPS technology. Interestingly, other than the first column, (see GPS – Gee, How Does It Work?), the other 6 columns were about what could go wrong and what you could do about it*. Last Spring, we wrote about the upcoming solar flare activity (GPS and the Sun - Flares Coming). This column is an update on that

Friday, February 18, 2011

Take Another Sea Song

Today's Sea Song of the Week is Take Another Road by Jimmy Buffett

In the past two days, Jimmy Buffett has received some very good business news. First he was named headliner and is also featured on the poster of the 2011 New Orleans Jazz Fest. Next, he got word of approval from the Biloxi City Council to open a new Jimmy Buffett's Margaritaville Casino and Restaurant in in Biloxi, Mississippi. While he does have a restaurant here in Connecticut on-site at the Mohegan Sun Casino, this may be the first casino that he actually owns or has lent his name to (we could be mistaken, comment below).

Jimmy sure has taken a different path to success than many of his peers over the past decades. That's why this song is so fitting. Please excuse the ad, as well as the horse on the boat.  Anyway, here's our pick for Sea Song of the Week, Take Another Road by Jimmy Buffett...

News sources referenced above and links to full articles: Jimmy Buffett is star of 2011 Jazz Fest poster Biloxi approves Margaritaville Casino and Restaurant

More Than Miami

What? There are boat shows going on outside of Miami this weekend?

Sailboats at a recent boat show. Photo © Nautical Sites Media

We already told you about the biggest of boat shows this weekend... the Miami International Boat Show and Strictly Sail.

But if you can't be in South Florida, there might be a boat show near you. There are several boat shows happening outside the US, as well as a few good boating and fishing shows throughout the United States.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Miami on My Mind

With a new boat show app and a boat load of new product announcements, Miami is the place to be this weekend

There are boat shows all over the world this weekend, but the biggest boats and crowds will be in Miami, Florida, for the Miami International Boat Show and Strictly Sail - one of the most important winter events for the boating industry. Boat manufacturers and companies that make products for boaters often unveil their latest offerings at this show each year, and the success of the show is usually an indicator for the upcoming boating season and the rest of the year.

This year's new announcements include new lines of boats from Powerboat P1 USA, Mercury Racing, Tiara Yachts, Contender Boats, Pursuit Boats, Sea Ray and Honda Marine, to name a few. The boat show itself has a new product for your mobile phone - the Miami International Boat Show and Strictly Sail App. We downloaded the Droid version (it's also available for the iPhone), and found it to be easy to use and helpful to navigate the huge boat show.

Going to the show? Got news from the show? Wondering which day is best to go?

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Sailing Report: Races Around the World

VELUX 5 Oceans competitors have Cape Horn on their mind. Barcelona racers approach Cook Strait.

The view this morning from aboard Groupe Bel in the Barcelona World Race ©

Sometimes it’s hard to imagine as we go on with our day to day lives that there are a handful of sailors racing across the world’s oceans in two separate competitions, each of which spans several months and tens of thousands of nautical miles.

Monday, February 14, 2011

For the Boaters You Love…

One last post for Valentine's Day! This one is the most important one; it's all about safety at sea.

Photo Courtesy of The U.S. Coast Guard.
Guest blog by Vincent Pica
Chief of Staff, First District, Southern Region (D1SR)
United States Coast Guard Auxiliary

With Valentine’s Day in hand, it is time for all those who stand a watch and wait for the return of those that went to sea to think about being the “safety officer” before they go! And, skipper, how about the love you have for those that go to sea with you – kids, grandkids and mates – and creating the safest environment aboard that is feasible or possible?

You Caught It, You Cook It

Swordfish En Papillote: A romantic Valentine’s Day dinner for ocean lovers from yacht chef Victoria Allman

A fancy and delicious way to serve swordfish
If you’re looking for a romantic Valentine’s Day dinner and you recently caught (or bought) some swordfish, we have the ideal recipe for you. Author and yacht chef Victoria Allman has just written and released her second book - SEAsoned: A Chef’s Journey With Her Captain, and has provided us with the following tasty treat to share with you.

This is an easy and tasty way to cook fish. You create a steam oven with the paper that keeps all the flavor and juices in the package while cooking. The vegetables and steam create a sauce for your fish.

Keep reading for the full recipe.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Sea Song of Heartbreak

Our Sea Song of the Week for Valentine's Day Weekend

Photo: © Sean Locke/istockphoto
Each week we post a nautical tune to help you get your weekend off to a great start, even if you can't get out on the boat or to a boat show. After all the mushy stuff we put up on the blog about Valentine's Day the past few days, we decided to pick a tune for the rest of the world. You know, the anti-Valentine's Day crowd.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Boat Shows for Valentine's Day

Looking for something romantic to do this Valentine's Day weekend? Why not go to a boat show?

Chaparrals at the Hartford Boat Show. Photo: Andrew Canepari
Don't you just LOVE going to boat shows? We are prepared to get some fan mail from some of our readers who will suggest a few things that are more romantic than a date at a boat show, but think about it... Valentine's Day is an especially wonderful time for a boat show. Where else can you and your loved one stay close to home and spend an afternoon or an evening dreaming of all the fun and romance you can enjoy on your next new boat? You can go to dinner and a movie anytime, but the boat show comes to town only once a year.

We write about all the boat and fishing shows for the weekend each and every Thursday, and we are still in the HEART of the winter boat show season. Therefore this Valentine's Day weekend is literally packed with boat shows - there is bound to be one near you. Let's see where they are...

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Recipe for Love

With only a few days until Valentine’s Day, we were lucky to catch this delicious new book

One of our regular recipe contributors from our You Caught It, You Cook It department has a new book out just in time for Valentine’s Day. Author and yacht chef Victoria Allman has just written and released her second offering - SEAsoned: A Chef’s Journey With Her Captain. The book is a delicious travel adventure that takes readers on a journey aboard a yacht into the heart of working for your husband and staying afloat during the first year of marriage.

If you are looking for the perfect gift for someone who enjoys boating and cooking, then look no further than this tale from someone who has been there and done that. Victoria has been a yacht chef for 12 years and has traveled through the Caribbean, Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia, the Bahamas and the South Pacific gathering recipes and tales for her stories.

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Go Under the Sea

Google marks the birthday of the creative genius behind Captain Nemo and the original Nautilus submarine

To see previous versions of Google's stylized logo, go to
Check out Google's homepage today if you haven't already. To celebrate the 183rd birthday of author Jules Verne, Google added an interactive design to its homepage today that allows you to navigate a simulated submarine underwater as if you were in his book, "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea."

Monday, February 07, 2011

Boats and Lightning

When unexpected lightning ruins an otherwise perfectly good day on the boat 

Guest blog by Vincent Pica
Chief of Staff, First District, Southern Region (D1SR)
United States Coast Guard Auxiliary

Lightning strikes on the water. Photo © istockphoto/Zoltan Domiter
If you have been boating more than 5 minutes, it is quite possible that you have left the dock under fair skies and come back being chased by the Wrath of God… This column is about that.

Saturday, February 05, 2011

Super Boats - Best Boats for 2011 Announced

Boating mag shares its choices for the best boats of the year

One of the Best Boats, the Cobalt A25, at the NY Boat Show. Photo © Nautical Sites Media
Earlier this week, Boating Magazine came out with its list of the best boats of 2011. The magazine’s editors reviewed and tested over 100 boats, and came up with nine models that meet their rigorous criteria.

Friday, February 04, 2011

The King of the Roaring Sea

Our pick for Sea Song of the Week is nautical shanty from the King himself

Each week we post a nautical tune to help you get your weekend off to a great start, even if you can't get out on the boat or to a boat show.

And if you can't get out on a boat this weekend, you're not alone - there is ice and snow covering much of the country. But don't despair. You can always think about Elvis, dressed the way Hollywood must have imagined fishermen in the early 1960s, singing a song about the sea. Didn't Hollywood know that fishing is one of the most dangerous jobs in the world?

Thursday, February 03, 2011

Boat Shows This Weekend and Beyond

All this weekend's boat shows, plus behind the scenes pictures from the Hartford Boat Show

Bassett Marine at the Hartford Boat Show. Photo by Andrew Canepari
Each Thursday we let you know about all the big boat shows for the weekend, and we have plenty to tell you about this week.

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Groundhog Day Sailing Report

Another wintry day in the Northeast, another sailing report on the Daily Boater.

Team Neutrogena in the Barcelona World Race ©
With snow and ice covering most of the United States, we thought we would cover some sailing events today so that we can dream of being somewhere warmer. Yes, it's Groundhog Day, and we don't have to watch the news to know that Punxsutawney Phil didn't see his shadow. We are REALLY hoping this results in an early spring as promised by that adorable little rodent.

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

USA 17 is on its way home!

With the next America’s Cup returning to the States, we're keeping an eye on preparation for the 2013 event.

By Sean McQuilken
Special to the Daily Boater

Photo by Gilles Martin-Raget /

After over a year in Valencia, Spain USA 17 - Oracle Racing's 90 foot America's Cup winning trimaran and all its support equipment were loaded onto a chartered cargo ship to be shipped to San Francisco. The ship is the Star Isfjord a 650 foot (198 meter) by 102 foot (31 meter) cargo ship flying the Norwegian flag. The reported shipping cost was $35,000 per day and it is estimated that it will take 30 days to get to San Francisco.