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post #32 of Old 06-21-2007
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Really good thread with some good info. This is making us all think, which is good. Every situation is not cut and dry, so all the opinions help. Having said that, remember that the last rule is to avoid a collision no matter who "has the right of way." Several times a season probably all of us have to give way to a burdened boat because the other captain doesn't know the rules, isn't paying attention or has some problem he is dealing with.

One small example -- couple of years ago I was sailing down the Chesapeake by Annapolis and a Navy 44, on what appeared to be a training mission, was about to cross in front of me. I was on starboard and they were on port. But I could tell the mids were having problems with the sails --the jib was twisted as I recall, lines were in the water and there were some kids running around on deck. And then one of them saw me coming right at them and even more pandemonium broke out. So I simply hardened up to duck in behind to go around them. Had I stayed on course I doubt we would've hit, but it would have been too close for comfort. After I was by them I looked back and they had the sails drawing nicely -- and the crew was standing by the rail saluting me. I doffed my hat and bowed to them and kept on my way. At least they knew!

Sailing winged keels since 1989.
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