Re: Unexplained phenomena while sailing...
I, too, am an avid amateur astronomer. Once, out in the desert near Palm Springs, I was looking up star hopping to Andromeda when I saw a small, pinpoint light, probably around Magnitude 3 or 4, slowly cruising North to South. Nothing unusual, I'm used to seeing satellites flying overhead. This one was unusual, however, because about half way across the sky, it stopped dead in it's tracks. It then brightened to appoximately Magnitude 1 for about 60 seconds, then receded back to it's original brightness, and then started moving to the South again. I had the distinct impression that during the time it had stopped it was actually descending closer to Earth, hence why it became brighter. To this day I have no idea what it was.
1969 S&S Yankee Dolphin 24 "Avri Ellis"