Disasters & Misadventures

Points East file photoGoing aground... it’s part of the boating experience.

That old saying…

January 31, 2022 at 12:00 am

January/February 2022 By Randy Randall There’s that old nautical saying, “If you’ve never gone aground in your boat, you’re not a sailor.” Maine ports and rivers are usually deep and well-marked, but estuaries like the Saco River and Biddeford Pool can surprise you – and before you know it, you’reRead More

U.S. Coast Guard photoAn image of the Bounty going under taken by the U.S. Coast Guard.

A lesson from the sinking of the Bounty

January 31, 2022 at 12:00 am

How group dynamics and loyalty can lead to disaster

The author’s family aboard their Boston Whaler, during a cruise in calmer weather.

Following seas, tin skiffs & Getch

November 22, 2021 at 12:00 am

Dave Getchell was the consummate small-outboard/aluminum-boat guy. A skillful, safety-conscious skipper, Getch clearly knew small-craft handling and loved to share his wisdom with kindred spirits.

Photo by Meredith J. Rushing Conrad at the helm with Alex fishing on the trip out to Damariscove Island. The beautiful sunshine would soon give way to much rougher weather.

Just plain scared silly

November 22, 2021 at 12:00 am

The weather was prefect for a picnic on Damariscove Island. Until it wasn’t. The trip back was a challenge.

Back view of senior white-haired man in outdoor excursion at sea, sitting on the rocks looking at horizon with arms outstretched

Need help? Wave your arms

September 27, 2021 at 12:00 am

October 2021 By Randy Randall The call was urgent. The outboard had conked out, and they wanted us to give them a tow. They had managed to snag a mooring and were marooned at the mouth of the river. They couldn’t get the outboard started. Could we come to getRead More

Photo by Christopher BirchHeidi, under tow, with some very nice Shaw & Tenney oars clamped in place with their special Edson oar clamp. The clamp wasn’t used and one of the oars is gone.

The lost oar

September 27, 2021 at 12:00 am

My father coached me to “Never get run over by the same trolley car twice.” Regrettably, I failed to abide and managed to accidentally set oars free in Buzzards Bay for a second time.

Photo courtesy Christopher Birch“Send me a photo of the toilet,” I instructed.

‘Boston, we have a problem…’

August 23, 2021 at 12:00 am

September 2021 By Christopher Birch “I just clogged up the toilet on the company plane and I need your help,” was how the scandalous text chain with my boat service customer started. “We’re going to be up for another four hours. There is only one toilet on this thing andRead More

Photo by Joel GleasonCuckholds Lighthouse, in calmer weather.

Incident at the Cuckholds

June 21, 2021 at 12:00 am

In a surreal moment, before either of us hit the water, I heard Eric yell, “That was a bad mistake. I’m not taking this boat south.” Then I was in a washing machine, struggling to reach the surface.

Photo courtesy Dave PalingDave and his daughter, Carly, aboard All In, a 16’ Carolina Skiff that several years ago went rogue.

A very close call

April 19, 2021 at 12:00 am

May 2021 By Dave Paling Growing up in a coastal town, I was exposed early to boats and experiences on the ocean. I grew to love time spent on the water thanks to my father, a navy veteran whose DNA drove him to pursue fishing whenever free time allowed. ARead More

An Easter story, 1959

April 19, 2021 at 12:00 am

A man does what he must – in spite of personal consequences, in spite of obstacles and dangers and pressures – and that is the basis of all human morality. – John F. Kennedy May, 2021 By David Roper So, what should he do? There he was, a middle-aged manRead More