Our first night on Air Ops was amazing. Quiet. Stars. Almost full moon. Fish jumping as we motored back to the yacht after dinner. Had an amazing series of chats.
This is what preparing for an extensive offshore trip looks like. #drybagsforthewin
Vesper Cortex AIS installed – check. Works with cell phones and iPads. Linked to VHF. Antennae installed. Working on connection to Raymarine E80 chart plotter (need a new cable for that).
Iridium Go satellite phone installed – check. Working well and sending location signals through Predict Wind.
Inventory of safety gear, kitchen gear, bedding, books, etc. – check. Photos set up in shared directory for crew members to see.
Now, if only the generator would run more than 17 minutes….
Thanks, Garry, for all of the work.
I want to thank Garry for his sacrifices in making this educational video. There aren’t many who would willingly dive off the dingy with a pouch containing his cell phone, passport, credit cards, cash, and driver’s license, just for instructional purposes. So when he contacted me last night (he still had his iPad and Apple Watch), I arranged for a diver through the marina, to show how to retrieve them. And get a video. Thanks, Garry, for helping us teach how important it is to have your valuables in a waterproof, floating, dry bag whenever entering or leaving the boat (trust me — I may have done this a few times myself…..)
Guess what my brother got me the day before he left for the boat! Is he worried that the systems he is about to install may not work properly? Nope. I get to teach him, and the rest of the crew, the old, tried and true, method of sail navigation.
Garry continues his magic. Here is a short video detailing our drive from Loreto, MX to Cabo last month at the end of our yacht-buying trip. I particularly love how he captured the “car launches”, as I called the Mexican speed bumps.
…just closed!!!! I am now the VERY proud owner of an Amel Maramu 46 (see Buying Air Ops, under The Boat, for further details).
I just purchased 2 major things for Air Ops.
Iridium Go is a satellite phone system that allows you to call, text and email from anywhere in the world. It also connects with Predict Wind to download weather forecasts, perform departure planning and route planning, based on weather and ocean currents. It does this based on your boat polars (graphs of how your particular boat sails best in all winds and wind directions).
As such, I believe it is, now, an indispensable piece of safety gear for offshore passages.
An Automatic Information System (AIS) is mandatory on most commercial vessels. It provides tracking information for any vessel around you, which has it turned on. Thus, you can “see” vessels a few miles away, their heading, speed, name, details and their boat equivalent of a cellular phone, on which you can call and talk to them. They are becoming increasingly popular on sailing and fishing vessels.
The more advanced ones, like the new Vesper Cortex, also incorporate anchor dragging warnings, sensor alerts (high bilge water, etc.). The Cortex also comes with a wifi system to allow you to view everything on multiple Ipads and cellphones.
Again, having used a similar system on many sailing adventures, I believe this is also a key safety feature, especially in busy marine areas, or when sailing at night near any commercial vessel.
With each of these, it is great to have a Crew member who knows a thing or two about electronics, and has the time to head to the boat in advance for installation and testing. 🙂