Articles by: John Gold

Saltwater sores and all

November 18, 2019 at 12:00 am

Romance: a quality or feeling of mystery, excitement, and remoteness from everyday life. I was in my mid-20s. A hopeless romantic. Alongside me sometimes stood a mailman or a UPS driver, sometimes both, by the pavilion on the right bank of the Mississippi River in St. Paul, Minnesota. Silent besideRead More

Cruising with Diana

November 18, 2019 at 12:00 am

Part 1: I had this great, new girlfriend, and I wanted to take her cruising, but my boat was a 40-year-old J/24 with minimal, claustrophobic accommodations. Well, one step at a time.

‘Low bridge, everybody down…’

November 18, 2019 at 12:00 am

 “Low bridge, we’re coming to a town,” the old barge song continues, and these days many of those towns on New York’s Western Erie Canal and Seneca Lake are spellbinding waterfront villages. Aboard Weak Moment, our 32-foot trawler, we’ve now seen quite a few of them.

The glittering darkness

November 18, 2019 at 12:00 am

The first time I nearly died in a boat was an occasion of sublime and terrifying beauty. I was in Woods Hole aboard the research schooner Westward, about to go to sea for the first time. I had joined the ship in Gloucester to supervise the construction of the newRead More

Saddleback Island

November 18, 2019 at 12:00 am

By Tim Plouff For most Mainers, the name Saddleback has long been associated with the western Maine mountain near Rangeley that was a popular ski resort for decades before successive owners fell on hard times. While the ski trails remain closed, an effort to re-start operations is ongoing. For manyRead More

A grim reality

November 18, 2019 at 12:00 am

“The Outlaw Ocean” by Ian Urbana; Alfred A. Knopf, 2019; 544 pp.; $16.53. Book review by Sandy Marsters A decade ago, on a voyage from the Chesapeake to St. Thomas, on a very dark night, the watch spotted the lights of a ship. It was not a crossing situation, butRead More

Boating and a big slice of humble pie

November 18, 2019 at 12:00 am

Many years ago, in the late ’90s, I had an old Star that I loved in a way that was inversely proportional to the aggravation it caused me. One of my top-five epic sails was aboard this boat, as was one of my top-five epic fails. The epic fail wasRead More

October Mystery Harbor: Essex Conn.

November 18, 2019 at 12:00 am

The harbor in the Oct./Nov. issue of Points East is Essex, Conn. The Connecticut River Museum, with its cupola and waterside deck, are dead giveaways. One of my first summer jobs was working for a yacht broker housed in the lighthouse on Pratt Street, around the corner from the EssexRead More

Good counsel, and sailing faster than the wind

November 18, 2019 at 12:00 am

In spite of my best-laid plans, a second season has now passed without launching our sloop Aloft. We have used the time to make numerous upgrades, and she now has a totally new rig, engine, and plank fastenings below the waterline. With her updated electronics and refurbished teak cockpit, sheRead More

The essence of Doug

November 18, 2019 at 12:00 am

“BoatSense: Lessons and Yarns from a Marine Writer’s Life Afloat” by Doug Logan; Seapoint Books, 2019; 120 pp.; $19.95. Book review by Charlie Doane What a charming book this is! A slim volume, but with a surprising variety of material in it. There’s a good deal of standard-issue practical adviceRead More