Read all that you can, learn everything you can. But, when you get caught in a big storm, it doesn't matter what Lin and Larry did, it will be your storm in your boat and you trying to survive. So, in your own boat, learn how to reef down or drop sails quickly, how to run before a storm with or without sails, claw off a lee shore and practice laying ahull. Know your engine - how to change an impeller, how to change a clogged fuel filter , how to bleed the engine, etc.
And know that if you get caught in bad weather, you will run into situations that you haven't read about or seen. Here's some examples: In the last Regata de Amigos, the keel fell off of the s/v Cynthia Wood taking an experienced sailor to Davy Jones Locker. Aboard the s/v Satori, the boat was fine, but the crew was seasick and frightened and couldn't function, they abandoned the boat which was later found on a lee shore with little more than cosmetic damage. In the March '08 full gale that Paloma was caught in, after a knock down, the main hung up in the spreaders, ripped and couldn't be dropped and a line wound around the prop, so no engine. And the list goes on . . . . .
s/v Paloma, Bristol 29.9, #141
Slipped in Bahia Marina, easy access to Corpus Christi Bay and the Gulf of Mexico.
Last edited by johnshasteen; 01-04-2009 at 05:38 PM.