When things go bad

We know that tales of disasters, mishaps and general screw ups are a part of being on the water. While we don’t celebrate them, we acknowledge a powerful interest in these stories and recognize their educational value. With that in mind, as well as the nearness of Halloween, we offer you some of our favorite tales of woe from years gone by.


Taking cover

It was a pleasant enough day when a friend and I took a new-to-me 14’ runabout down the Providence River from the neighborhood of Riverside in East Providence. At 16 years old we were venturing into the “vast open water” of Narragansett Bay south of Conimicut Light headed for PatienceRead More ...
Read More
Captain Bumblebee to the rescue

Captain Bumblebee to the rescue

By Ralph B. Pears My hapless cruising companion of many years, affectionately known as “Captain Bumblebee” because of his fondness for a yellow and black rugby shirt, was someone who was always prepared to lend a helping hand. You could always depend on him to assist with a shipboard repairRead More ...
Read More
Mad dash to go-back

Mad dash to go-back

Experience is the best teacher, and lessons can be learned by straddling “exciting” and “really dumb.” In that spirit, I planned a 20-mile, Force 5 downwind flier from Portland to Harpswell ...
Read More
Let’s talk about your fear

Let’s talk about your fear

Fear is part of the boating experience — It’s how you handle it that counts. We asked readers to recount their experiences with fear on the water. These are their stories. “If we get through this, let’s get married” Watery nightmares turn to dream realized A gift of calm inRead More ...
Read More
‘OK, Irv, you’re right!’

‘OK, Irv, you’re right!’

Guest Perspective: Paul Brown Fundy Flotilla 2004, from Northeast Harbor to Grand Manan, and then on to Saint John and the St. John River. Brownscow, my Beneteau Evasion 32, had made it to Grand Manan, New Brunswick, and then had to leave the flotilla as my crew, Irv, had toRead More ...
Read More
Deliverance

Deliverance

The schooner was pinned against 40-foot cliffs, pounded by seas that threw spray over their tops. A former owner of a towing and salvage firm, I thought I could haul her off with my 46-foot sedan cruiser. ...
Read More
The glittering darkness

The glittering darkness

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 ...
Read More
The sea is not done with me yet

The sea is not done with me yet

The boat is lost. Will the replays ever end? ...
Read More
Beware the last sail

Beware the last sail

A fall delivery to the boatyard seemed such a simple thing. It was only a few miles. What could possibly go wrong? ...
Read More

A long day’s journey into fright

April, 2005 By Bob Knecht For Points East Tiger Rag, our Beals Island 22, is one hell of a seaboat for her size. She was born in Calvin Beal’s boat shop and designed for Maine waters, and that’s why I bought her. On this day last summer, my daughter, SamanthaRead More ...
Read More
A close call and a story to tell

A close call and a story to tell

The tourists cheered. The locals loved it. The tanker crew cursed. And we had a boating story to tell. Big deal. ...
Read More
Shakedown cruise

Shakedown cruise

Even with everything going wrong, a Downeast shakedown leaves a father and his teen-age daughters with a deeper appreciation for the joys of cruising – and of engines. ...
Read More

Scary stuff

Readers write: Scariest moments at sea ...
Read More