You need sea boots…

You need sea boots.  I’ve owned a few over the years.  If you’ve got old ones (especially the Henri Lloyds) check the soles…some of them oxidize and become useless if not dangerous.  A couple of years ago I ponied up for the expensive Dubarry’s and have been happy…especially with my Grunden’s boot liners.

Here’s a link to Landfall with some other choices
Here they are at APS:
And here they are at pyacht:

Dubarry Sea Boots

Head Gear recommendation

Guys…  There is EVERY reason to believe that the EDLU, Stratford Shoals and Block Island Races will be extremely cold at night.  It is imperative that you have appropriate gear to keep you warm.  If you are cold and less able to function you run a far higher risk of injury from falling.   Stating the obvious here.

NOW is the time to do a little shopping and put together your gear bag with foul weather gear, boots, bootliners, gloves and head gear.

Here is what I recently purchased for headgear:

Headgear I purchased from Amazon

Headgear I purchased from Amazon

After trying this stuff on I’d strongly recommend the OKmilitary Dragon Tactical Heavyweight Balaclava…  It’s very warm and the face covering part goes up and down comfortably.  The ZANheadgear microfleece is interesting.  I bought it because it has a zipper down face with nice chafe protection at the top of the zipper.  I don’t like Balaclava’s that strangle you when you want to lower them to speak…  I probably could have down without the Nylon Balaclava which I bought as an underlayer… Its tight fitting stretchy…so jury is out on that one.  Will have to see.

They point here is…It’s a lot more fun when you are warm and you are lot safer when you are warm.

PLEASE get gear together and shop now if you need stuff.  I will post a few more gear recommendations in the next few days.

Grundens Goat Feet Bootliners – Strongly recommended!

So Guys…There is very little gear or frankly anything at all that I will strongly recommend to anyone.  With that said these simple fleece boot-liners are an absolute must have in my opinion.  They are AWESOME for sailing boats and also AWESOME for ski boots.  Hathaway, Reiser and Raymond in Stamford carries them in stock most of the time though you can also acquire them on the internet.  They are called “Grundens Goat Feet Bootliners”.  No idea what the whole “goat feet” thing is about.  I can tell you I wear these things all the time.  One of the greatest benefits of wearing them is how they making getting sailing boats and ski boots incredibly easy to get on and off…not to mention their moisture wicking properties.  Once you get them you won’t be able to live without them…trust me.

Grundens Goat Feet Bootliners

Grundens Goat Feet Bootliners

Sources to get them:
Hathaway, Reiser and Raymong,, 203-324-9581, call first to make sure they have in stock.


Atlas Vinylove – The best wet and cold weather gloves!

Atlas Vinylove – The best wet and cold weather gloves!  I can’t say enough about these gloves.  They make ALL the difference between comfort and discomfort.  I strongly recommend them!  Plus, they provide endless hours of stupid-humor when stuck on a boat hundreds of miles offshore with all men.  What exactly is Vinylove?  Careful of the texture these gloves are great for gripping (;

Atlas Vinylove

Atlas Vinylove

Where to get:
I believe Hathaways may now carry (on my recommendation!)…but they are also available here


What’s expected of crew?

What’s expected of crew from my perspective as owner/captain? 

1) First and foremost HAVE FUN, BE SAFE.

Not safe isn’t fun and not fun just sucks.

With that said I’ve always said to my kids “Which is more important winning trophies or having fun?” and their learned refrain is “Having fun! and it’s fun to win trophies!”

We’re embarking on a “campaign” which culminates with a safe, fun and fast Newport-Bermuda Race.  I have no doubt that of the races that we sail we will some silver.  We’re doing this to compete, but fun and safe are actually higher priorities.

2) GEAR – You need to have some basic gear.  Boots, boot-liners, gloves, warm head-gear and foul-weather gear.  If you are cold, wet or uncomfortable you are much more likely to be unsafe.  If you are planning on doing much offshore sailing I’d recommend you purchase your own hydrostatic live-vest/harness and double-tether.  Between Glory and Honahlee we should have enough for everyone but mine are older SOSpenders and are NOT going to be equipped for auto-inflate.  I strongly recommend against dissolveable lozenge auto-inflate.  All lifejacket harnesses also require leg straps, that is a Bermuda Race rule (annoys me but it’s a rule).

3) COMMUNICATION – Read communications, Listen, most importantly speak up with thoughts, ideas, suggestions or concerns.

4) FORMAL HELP – We’ve already started with some “formal” roles delegation…this is immensely helpful.  More of the details on this later…

5) INFORMAL HELP – I will need some help at times lugging sails, gear and provisions.  It literally is almost impossible to do alone.  I will ask over email.  I fully expect that most of the time guys won’t be able make it or will have other obligations.  I’ll try and be sure to let you know when I’m desperate and in danger of burning out.  It is very easy for a boat owner/organizer to burn out and start races exhausted which leads to bad things…

and yikes!….  6) Be ON TIME for Dock Call!  (exceptions happen, but communicate in advance if possible and certainly on the day of by cell phone).

The Preliminary Schedule Email (sent Feb. 4th)

Gentlemen.  Here is the Honahlee 2014 distance racing schedule.  Please let me know what you can commit to of this schedule and/or what questions you may have.


pre-Bermuda and Bermuda

1) EDLU race exact date not scheduled for 2014 but probably is Saturday May 10th (last year was May 11th)  [approx. 30 miles, day race approx. 5 hours]

2) NYAC Stratford Shoal race exact date not scheduled for 2014 but probably is Saturday May 17th (last year was May 18th)  [approx. 60 miles, extended day race, approx. 10 hours]

3) BLOCK ISLAND race start IS Friday May 23rd (Always Friday start before Memorial Day weekend)  [approx. 180 miles, overnight race, approx. 30 hours.]

4) NEWPORT-BERMUDA race start IS Friday June 20th.  [approx. 635 miles, approx. 105 hours/4.3 days]



5) AROUND LONG ISLAND race not scheduled for 2014 but probably is Thursday July 24th start (last year was July 25th start)  [approx. 30 miles, day race approx. 5 hours]

6) VINEYARD race IS Friday August 29th start (Always Friday start before Labor Day weekend)  [approx. 235 miles, overnight race approx. 39 hours]


other possible not decided post-Bermuda

7) GEARBUSTER race  race not scheduled for 2014 but probably is Saturday October 11th start (last year was October 12th)  [approx. 30 miles, day race approx. 5 hours]


IF we did everything on this schedule we are going to sail approximately 1,200 miles together in hopefully less than 200 hours/8.3 days.

NOAA Plotting Sheet – Newport to Bermuda

Newport-Bermuda Race, 635 nautical miles at a heading of 164°34′ magnetic.

“East is Least, West is Best” – meaning variation is subtracted from True heading when East and added when West.

Rhumb Line shows Compass rose at center of chart shows 148°45′ True heading.  Compass rose shows VAR 16°00′ W(2003) and ANNUAL DECREASE 1′.  Not that precision is required to that degree (pun intended)…but nice to share some basic knowledge.

2014 – 2003 = 11 of the 1′ decrease.
VAR = 16°00′ minus 11′ = 15°49′ W

15°49′ + 148°45′ = 164°34′ magnetic heading from Newport, Rhode Island to Kitchen Shoals, Bermuda.  The distance is 635 nautical miles.  Little bit of trivia…sailors don’t often bother to convert nautical miles to statute but in the instance of the Bermuda Race it is significant enough to change your perspective a little… 635 nautical equals 731 statute miles.