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post #9 of Old 09-17-2010
Cruisingdad
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When I first set out, I cannot sleep. But by that evening, I am dead tired. Many people use a egg timer. I never have. I have this really annoying alarm that won't shut up on my watch. I got the thing at walmart and tehy are great watches for that purpose (cheap and annoying). It also forces you to wake up enough to reset the time for another 15-30 mins. After the first day, it is on-off. I started getting into a better rhythm.

Let me comment about what nasomi said easrlier: I would NEVER, NEVER, EVER anchor in a shipping lane. I doubt I would anchor beside it. My experience with commercial vessels is that they either don't see you or don;t care. I am generalizing. Of course, there are many exceptions. But that is why I am such a huge fan of radar. You will really paint those guys a long way off. You will paint them on radar long before you can see them and you can figure out which way they are going and if there might be a problem. Remember, these boats are running in the 30+ knot range. So assuming you are not making for them, and they are 12 miles out, they will easily be on top of you within 20 minutes. THat is why I typically use teh 15 minute rule when I pass by a large port (like Tampa). And when i say that, I do not mean within sight of land, I mean even 50 miles out. Because they will open up outisde of the port and will make for the most direct course between other ports.

When in shipping lanes like outside of San Diego, whew... you will not be sleeping. No way. That place is incredibly busy and between teh commercial ships and the navy, you are on constant lookout. So it is nice to make sure that you have planned your sleeping sschedules such that when you approach these types of areas, you can be wide awake and on your toes. This is true whether singlehand or with crew. When we approach an area that I know is going to be busy or require a lot of thought, I want to be awake and in control versus Kris or Dad (when he comes along and helps). Does that make sense?

But anchoring anywhere near a shipping lane would be like puttin up a tent on the emergency lane on a busy highway. Scary and dangerous. I suspect a large commercail vessel would never even know they hit you. I am not exhagerating. They would probably never know. It has been posted here several times before (I cann't find it right now) but there is a picture of a ship with the mast of a sailboat hanging from its anchor. They got to port and never even knew it. It's enough to scare the crap out of us. To the best of my knwoledge, that ship and crew were never heard from or found.

Food for thought when transiting shipping channels/areas AND when considering singlehanding.

Brian

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