Chasing Rum on Puget Sound

Lucile McDonald (1898-1992) was an amazing journalist/historian/author on the prowl for Washington State history. Let's once more follow her trail through Puget Sound when she was beach-combing for tales of the rum-running…

Gear Review: Vesper Cortex after a few months

The Vesper Cortex is an AIS Class B+ SOTDMA transponder combined with VHF radio and remote monitoring. It shows amazing promise after the first few months of use. The Vesper Cortex has been one of the most anticipated…

Lazy days in Zihuatanejo

Looking skyward from our dinghy, I watch dozens of dark brown frigate birds whirl overhead in continually shrinking circles. They soon begin to dive all around the small cove, hitting the water with a splash, setting the…

Smooth running NMEA 2000 networks with smart universal terminators

Keep your NMEA 2000 network running smoothly with a universal terminator that has an LED showing bus voltage, and can be used easily at either end of the bus. NMEA 2000 networks can be frustrating as evidenced by the amount…

Insider ideas: Totem’s 2020 gift guide

Every year we put a holiday gift guide together, to help pick out something special for the cruisers and cruisers-to-be on your list. This year, the suggestions have a new source. We send an occasional newsletter to coaching…

How to Report Nautical Chart Corrections

One great virtue of electronic charts is their ability to be updated quickly by both NOAA's Office of Coast Survey (OCS), who makes the charts, and then the mariners who use them on the water. Electronic Navigational Charts…

Destination Manzanillo: Thankful for the freedom of cruising

In the month of November leading up to Thanksgiving, we have a running family tradition aboard Yahtzee to go around the table during a meal each day and share one thing we’re thankful for. A couple days after dropping anchor…

Adding a NMEA 2000 powered Raspberry Pi to your boat

Easy to install Raspberry Pi computer that gets its power from the NMEA 2000 bus — Great for SignalK, OpenCPN, and OpenPlotter. Running a Raspberry Pi aboard a boat has been a popular thing to do for a number of years. I’ve…

Back to Mexico and a Return to the Cruising Life

Walking down the dock the other day, I stopped in my tracks, looked at Yahtzee and smiled. What a magical piece of fiberglass, metal, canvas and ropes this thing is. Our home for over 8 years, Porter and Magnus have lived…

Loving LoCo: 5 Hidden Gems of Cruising the Lower Columbia

I mean Lower Columbia, not loco like crazy. Though if you own a small boat and don’t visit LoCo, you may be crazy. There’s always something to see, to like, to love. Here are my top five of a recent trip. #5 Working, or…