Diamond Jim

Cruising guide for Maine

Recommended Posts

Taft and Rindlaub.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Taft and Rindlaub.

Fastest end to a thread ever. What an amazing guide.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Taft and Rindlaub.

 

Not much beats that. Active Captain makes a supplement to that if taken with a grain of salt. Make sure you read the profile before believing what's written. :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The harbors and islands haven't moved much...

Not much moves fast Down East, it's sorta the whole point.

 

Penobscot can keep you occupied for weeks.

 

SW Harbor and Soames Sound are worthy of a side trip, and it just keeps going out to NB.

 

Used to leave Kittery Point in Afternoon, fetch Matinicus Light around 2AM and breakfast in Rockland.

 

Always leave one pot between you and the shore, use your Radar in fog cuz the fishermen don't, they know where they are.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That was published in 2000.

Is there nothing more current?

I've posted about many of my favorites in Penobscot Bay, in USHarbors.com Check the nearby harbors for posts about destinations you're interested in.

 

http://usharbors.com/image-gallery/finding-eden-isle-au-haut

http://usharbors.com/image-gallery/cranberry-island-grilled-lobster-two

http://usharbors.com/image-gallery/545-am-escape-buckle-island

 

I live and sail on the bay. These days, you can google an area - destination and sometimes get current info from blogs, articles and posts of that area.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Taft and Rindlaub.

I had a chat on the water with Curtis just a few years ago. I don't think he'd mind me repeating the jist of it here. Very likable, he's also a very practical guy.

 

A season or so before our conversation, a friend said to him, "Curtis, have you seen this?".

 

On a device, Curtis got his first look at Active Captain. This is a guy who took the Hank and Jan Taft guide, a long accepted best cruising guide for the coast of Maine, and made it even better. He knows what it means - in time - to get current info from reality to print.

 

After clicking through AC for a while, he looked at his friend, and said, "I'm dead".

 

We both laughed at that. His statement wasn't entirely true, but it wasn't entirely false, either.

 

While there are many, many boats on the coast of Maine with his cruising guide onboard, few are current issues. Those guides are likely similar vintage to the paper charts the boats carry (if they carry any). And those guides don't vaporize after a year like your Navionics charts, and prompt you for 15 bucks each spring.

 

For the record, I carry no paper charts, have an antique Maine cruising guide, and have never had radar. You don't need much to cruise the coast of Maine.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, radar definitely comes in handy when you can't see your bow through the fog. I've had more than a few lobsterboats come close to hitting me in the fog, and without radar I'm certain there would have been a collision.

 

As for the online cruising guides displacing that Taft guide, we're definitely not there yet. The US Boats and harbors app I could never get to run at all, so that was useless. The active captain app, while well meaning and much touted, is also useless and particularly awful in its design and user interface. There is also the issue of internet access while sailing. Sure there is great LTE around most of the major parts of Penobscot Bay, but there are more than a few areas where cellular access is nonexistent. Those spots always seem to be the spots that I like cruising to most, so having my cruising guides close at hand is great.

 

To supplement the Taft guide, I have a copy of the Cruising Guide of the New England Coast by Duncan and Fenn. This does have some good information, though not as good in general as the Taft guide. Also, more recent editions of this guide have a completely useless index, which is especially irritating when entering a harbor and you may need to get some local information quickly. Having a good index is especially important. I have several older editions of this cruising guide, including a spiral bound first edition. These are often hilarious to read, as the original authors were clearly old line WASP types that had definite opinions about their environs and the people inhabiting them. I love these old editions. What is especially interesting in the first edition is how it reads like a bold adventure to an unknown land, which it really was in many ways.

 

Another helpful guide, is the Visual Guide to the Maine Coast. This book provides excellent aerial photographs of harbor entrances and passages that are annotated. This is certainly not an essential book, but great for adding context.

 

Finally, I will buy almost any book about the Maine coast in good used book stores. Usually I find these books in Maine of course, but I have found some treasures as far away as Washington state. Most of the time, these aren't really cruising guides, but books that provide historical background and interesting stories about the places sshow Bob noted above haven't changed much. One I found a couple of seasons ago was "Islands of the Mid-Maine coast: Blue Hill and Penobscot Bays by Charles Mclane. This book offers excellent detailed histories of all the islands in these areas and really adds terrific context.

 

There are good used book stores up and down the coast, but here are a few that I highly recommend:

 

Goose River exchange in Camden, ME. This is a good used book store that often has some great nautical content. The prices are often unrealistic here, though some bargains can be found. I picked up a copy of Henry Scheel's excellent book 15 modern design that was signed and annotated by Scheel for $30 here. That was a bargain!

 

Door Yard Books in Rockland Maine is a treasure. They have a huge nautical and maritime section that has all manner of books to interest a cruiser. The prices here are almost always agreeable, and the great old proprietor is usually willing to haggle. There is a book shop/coffee shop a little ways up Maine street from here, but that place seems to be getting worse as time goes on. It was decent when it opened a decade ago, but it's almost pathetic when compared to Door Yard.

 

Nautical Scribe Books in Belfast is a Maritime books only store. Their prices are great, and they constantly have new books coming in. Well worth a visit when you're in Belfast, which also has several other fine independent book stores.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks on the bookstores. I was only aware of one. Used bookstores, another reason the Taft guide at 40 to 50 dollars an edition is hard to sell. The volumes make the rounds of boats via used book stores - over and over - and slow new Taft print guides. Dwindling numbers of new issues, raises the print price.

 

I too carry a Duncan and Fenn issue. It's handy when we head south of Maine, even though it is way outdated. You mention McClanes book. I have that and often refer to it. It's a fascinating local history book that is a wealth of info for cruisers here.

 

Then there are fictional and non fictional books on coastal Maine (as you mention) that are terrific 'cruising guides' , in their own way. Fiction like The Wooden Nickel (Wm. Carpenter) will tell you a whole lot more about that guy pulling traps nearby, than you want to know,... :)

 

I love writing about the sailing in my area. I've thought about putting together on online cruising guide. But,..I think the idea - print cruising guide formula online - simply doesn't work today, like it did 10-15 years ago.

 

Crowd sourcing, social media, all that stuff replaces the old model(author trying to do it all). You'd drive yourself crazy trying to keep things up to date. Where as crowd sourcing does all that work for you. You might not like all of it but it's updated info way beyond what the old model provided.

 

There will always be a place for print cruising guides, but if you're the publisher, $ will be a joke.

 

People are becoming more capable with the internet and many find what they need online. Plus, internet service has improved around here and the trend will continue.

 

I'm in the minority when it comes to radar, but after 20 years of coastal Maine sailing, I'm good. But then again, fog in this area isn't what fog is farther downeast.

Well, radar definitely comes in handy when you can't see your bow through the fog. I've had more than a few lobsterboats come close to hitting me in the fog, and without radar I'm certain there would have been a collision.

 

As for the online cruising guides displacing that Taft guide, we're definitely not there yet. The US Boats and harbors app I could never get to run at all, so that was useless. The active captain app, while well meaning and much touted, is also useless and particularly awful in its design and user interface. There is also the issue of internet access while sailing. Sure there is great LTE around most of the major parts of Penobscot Bay, but there are more than a few areas where cellular access is nonexistent. Those spots always seem to be the spots that I like cruising to most, so having my cruising guides close at hand is great.

 

To supplement the Taft guide, I have a copy of the Cruising Guide of the New England Coast by Duncan and Fenn. This does have some good information, though not as good in general as the Taft guide. Also, more recent editions of this guide have a completely useless index, which is especially irritating when entering a harbor and you may need to get some local information quickly. Having a good index is especially important. I have several older editions of this cruising guide, including a spiral bound first edition. These are often hilarious to read, as the original authors were clearly old line WASP types that had definite opinions about their environs and the people inhabiting them. I love these old editions. What is especially interesting in the first edition is how it reads like a bold adventure to an unknown land, which it really was in many ways.

 

Another helpful guide, is the Visual Guide to the Maine Coast. This book provides excellent aerial photographs of harbor entrances and passages that are annotated. This is certainly not an essential book, but great for adding context.

 

Finally, I will buy almost any book about the Maine coast in good used book stores. Usually I find these books in Maine of course, but I have found some treasures as far away as Washington state. Most of the time, these aren't really cruising guides, but books that provide historical background and interesting stories about the places sshow Bob noted above haven't changed much. One I found a couple of seasons ago was "Islands of the Mid-Maine coast: Blue Hill and Penobscot Bays by Charles Mclane. This book offers excellent detailed histories of all the islands in these areas and really adds terrific context.

 

There are good used book stores up and down the coast, but here are a few that I highly recommend:

 

Goose River exchange in Camden, ME. This is a good used book store that often has some great nautical content. The prices are often unrealistic here, though some bargains can be found. I picked up a copy of Henry Scheel's excellent book 15 modern design that was signed and annotated by Scheel for $30 here. That was a bargain!

 

Door Yard Books in Rockland Maine is a treasure. They have a huge nautical and maritime section that has all manner of books to interest a cruiser. The prices here are almost always agreeable, and the great old proprietor is usually willing to haggle. There is a book shop/coffee shop a little ways up Maine street from here, but that place seems to be getting worse as time goes on. It was decent when it opened a decade ago, but it's almost pathetic when compared to Door Yard.

 

Nautical Scribe Books in Belfast is a Maritime books only store. Their prices are great, and they constantly have new books coming in. Well worth a visit when you're in Belfast, which also has several other fine independent book stores.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Taft and Rindlaub.

I had a chat on the water with Curtis just a few years ago. I don't think he'd mind me repeating the jist of it here. Very likable, he's also a very practical guy.

 

A season or so before our conversation, a friend said to him, "Curtis, have you seen this?".

 

On a device, Curtis got his first look at Active Captain. This is a guy who took the Hank and Jan Taft guide, a long accepted best cruising guide for the coast of Maine, and made it even better. He knows what it means - in time - to get current info from reality to print.

 

After clicking through AC for a while, he looked at his friend, and said, "I'm dead".

 

We both laughed at that. His statement wasn't entirely true, but it wasn't entirely false, either.

 

While there are many, many boats on the coast of Maine with his cruising guide onboard, few are current issues. Those guides are likely similar vintage to the paper charts the boats carry (if they carry any). And those guides don't vaporize after a year like your Navionics charts, and prompt you for 15 bucks each spring.

 

For the record, I carry no paper charts, have an antique Maine cruising guide, and have never had radar. You don't need much to cruise the coast of Maine.

 

 

Well, I find it works best when you combine the two. They are complimentary. I feel the same way about paper and digital.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"I'm in the minority when it comes to radar, but after 20 years of coastal Maine sailing, I'm good. But then again, fog in this area isn't what fog is farther downeast. "

 

With Modern position finding (GPS/Loran) you don't need radar if you are the only one moving, or if you can wait for better visibility.

 

The fishermen tend to be out of the channel running their strings, and you can generally hear them with the usual drystack exhausts.

 

It's the idiots who "need to be back in the office on Monday", running a waypoint to waypoint route, based on an autopilot/routing combination who don't know how to use radar, probably don't have AIS and won't use/can't hear fog horns that you want radar for.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I saw Curtis a few weeks ago, he said he is starting a new edition- I'm guessing it is a tough go. I too love the old guides, they had great stories. Any books by Alfred Loomis are also great for back-in-the-day stuff.

 

I don't mind sailing in fog, but I get a little anxious trying to power. The lobster boats tend to finish a string, goose the throttle, turn to the course for their next string and then look at the radar- if I can hear them I know what they are doing, if my own engine is running I want radar.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I saw Curtis a few weeks ago, he said he is starting a new edition- I'm guessing it is a tough go. I too love the old guides, they had great stories. Any books by Alfred Loomis are also great for back-in-the-day stuff.

 

I don't mind sailing in fog, but I get a little anxious trying to power. The lobster boats tend to finish a string, goose the throttle, turn to the course for their next string and then look at the radar- if I can hear them I know what they are doing, if my own engine is running I want radar.

I hope it stays lucrative enough for him to keep it going. Not very many paper-print businesses have made a successful transition to this new age.

 

That's the way for me too. I'll rarely power in fog, because I rarely have to be somewhere on the water.

 

Under sail, I can keep easy track of nearby power boats in the fog, avoid heavy traffic. It's amazing what you CAN'T hear on the water, with an engine on.

 

These days when I know where I am (GPS), fog under sail is actually enjoyable (for me). It's the rocks that scare me around here. :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's been a while since I've seen the issue brought up about ActiveCaptain and internet access. Today there are 600 apps that use ActiveCaptain offline. No internet connection is needed once you've installed and synchronized the app. Go across to Europe and in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, every review, comment, price, and detail of everything on the website is all there. Offline.

 

Only the ActiveCaptain website is live data. Our stats say that only 20% of users use that today. When I'm underway on my boat, I never use my own website.

In addition to this, there are 650 chartplotter models capable of having the full data offline through C-Map charts (since March 2016). Everything is there too - no internet needed.

 

OK, all of that said, I lived in Maine for 24 years. And to this day, I have Taft's book on my boat. It was how I learned to cruise the coast of Maine myself. It's a fantastic resource.

 

I'll be up there for August this summer. If Curtis Rindlaub can meet me in Castine (I'll be anchored in Smiths Cove for the month), I'd love to have him onboard to talk about Maine cruising and show him some of the things that are coming next.

 

 

 


As for the online cruising guides displacing that Taft guide, we're definitely not there yet. The US Boats and harbors app I could never get to run at all, so that was useless. The active captain app, while well meaning and much touted, is also useless and particularly awful in its design and user interface. There is also the issue of internet access while sailing. Sure there is great LTE around most of the major parts of Penobscot Bay, but there are more than a few areas where cellular access is nonexistent. Those spots always seem to be the spots that I like cruising to most, so having my cruising guides close at hand is great.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Taft and Rindlaub.

 

Not much beats that. Active Captain makes a supplement to that if taken with a grain of salt. Make sure you read the profile before believing what's written. :D

 

 

A pound of salt is better when it comes to AC. From what I've seen, there's way too much poor and/or outdated information in AC to really trust it. Here's what happens to people who do (from AC's Facebook page)...

 

post-31750-0-61046800-1493418177_thumb.jpg

 

At least they got the hat.

 

As for the integrations with chartplotters - C-MAP is the problem. It kind of sucks when compared to Navionics and other leading charts (even with free NOAA raster charts as far as I'm concerned). So - meh.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Smack, I have to shake my head in admiration at the way you are a dog with a bone about some things - Brent Swain and Active Captain come to mind. Now if we could only harness that doggedness for the greater good of humanity...would you consider adding Kim Jong-Un to your portfolio?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Smack, I have to shake my head in admiration at the way you are a dog with a bone about some things - Brent Swain and Active Captain come to mind. Now if we could only harness that doggedness for the greater good of humanity...would you consider adding Kim Jong-Un to your portfolio?

 

Heh. I just have to call 'em like I see 'em. And in both stated cases you could probably say it IS for the greater good of humanity...at least those with boats.

 

As for the Kim fella - never heard of him. Sounds like a clown.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

Taft and Rindlaub.

 

Not much beats that. Active Captain makes a supplement to that if taken with a grain of salt. Make sure you read the profile before believing what's written. :D

A pound of salt is better when it comes to AC. From what I've seen, there's way too much poor and/or outdated information in AC to really trust it. Here's what happens to people who do (from AC's Facebook page)...

 

attachicon.gifAC_Rudderbust.jpg

 

At least they got the hat.

 

As for the integrations with chartplotters - C-MAP is the problem. It kind of sucks when compared to Navionics and other leading charts (even with free NOAA raster charts as far as I'm concerned). So - meh.

It's crowd sourced, so all the normal caveats apply. The data I see in Maine is pretty good, especially when used as supplement, not a replacement, for normal, sound, rout planning. You just need to keep in mind if the info is left by a 23' power yacht that draws 2'. Why would you want it integrated? N any case, I dislike vector charts due to the false sense of accuracy they give and don't use them. I do use NOAA raster charts.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

 

Taft and Rindlaub.

Not much beats that. Active Captain makes a supplement to that if taken with a grain of salt. Make sure you read the profile before believing what's written. :D

A pound of salt is better when it comes to AC. From what I've seen, there's way too much poor and/or outdated information in AC to really trust it. Here's what happens to people who do (from AC's Facebook page)...

 

attachicon.gifAC_Rudderbust.jpg

 

At least they got the hat.

 

As for the integrations with chartplotters - C-MAP is the problem. It kind of sucks when compared to Navionics and other leading charts (even with free NOAA raster charts as far as I'm concerned). So - meh.

It's crowd sourced, so all the normal caveats apply. The data I see in Maine is pretty good, especially when used as supplement, not a replacement, for normal, sound, rout planning. You just need to keep in mind if the info is left by a 23' power yacht that draws 2'. Why would you want it integrated? N any case, I dislike vector charts due to the false sense of accuracy they give and don't use them. I do use NOAA raster charts.

 

 

 

I would hope that the AC stuff in Maine is pretty good since the dude lives there.

 

As I've always said, the problem isn't the crowdsourcing necessarily - it's the lack of vetting/verification and the model of simply increasing data for its own sake. Some of the AC data is pretty useful, but from what I've seen usually that's the stuff that came from the Skipper Bob guides in the first place. A lot of the rest of it's just noise. I mean do you really need marina reviews from 2007 - or 10 anchoring markers within a few hundred feet of each other in a specific anchorage? I certainly don't...and I don't want to have to wade through it all - especially at the helm. So I agree that this POI stuff is far more useful for planning than it is for onboard navigation - and I think there are far better tools out there for that planning (like Waterway Guide). But I also think integration can be good - it just needs to be smarter.

 

PS - As for the charts, I too switch between Navionics and NOAA. But I've found the Navionics charts pretty solid I must say. And with their crowdsourced SonarCharts - that accuracy will only get better and better. They're professionals - they know how to vet.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

1. The example boater who sustained damage above described it in a post where he was giving nothing but complements to ActiveCaptain. Unfortunately, he hadn't followed some of the info. Others assisted him in understanding the approach.

 

2. Although I used to live in Maine, I don't any longer. I created my share of anchorages in the Penobscot Bay that I had been to. 99%+ of the data was filled in by everyone else including the Penobscot Bay.

 

3. A week ago, I was a speaker at NOAA's Hydrographic Services Review Panel board meeting in Seattle. This is the planning committee that directs NOAA's efforts at hydrography and nautical charts. My talk was called, "Every Crowd Has a Silver Lining" and discussed the current state and future capabilities of crowd-sourcing hydrography. This meeting included the very top experts of hydrography in the world with more time for discussion about my topic than the presentation itself. Navionics' SonarCharts were discussed and no one really understood how they put together the charts they display. I have specific examples where the SonarChart data could not have been collected from a boat unless the boat's depth wasn't corrected for tide, transducer placement, or spacial correlation to the GPS. Navionics gives no information about how the data is combined and unfortunately, gives some very erroneous data that would make anyone change their plans when, in fact, the problems displayed just don't exist. The contours appear to be all precision and no accuracy, a dangerous combination for charts.

 

Steve (Smackdaddy) has an agenda. It's not based on fact. It's based on some odd vendetta from a newbie boater who mixes in shades of truth to attempt to make a convincing argument.

 

ActiveCaptain can't have the love of 100% of boaters. We'll accept the 85% we have and strive to improve. If anyone needs the real story behind any of the claims, I'd be happy to provide it off-topic. Nothing described is, well, as it is. There is an ActiveCaptain Facebook group, one of the largest boating groups in Facebook, where the topics could be discussed among a few thousand boaters who are familiar with ActiveCaptain's advantages and issues.

I still think that the Cruising the Maine Coast is a great resource and I'd love to meet Curtis Rindlaub when we're anchored for the month in Smiths Cove in Maine. I hope everyone else has a great summer wherever your adventures take you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another cruising resource that some people use are these sailing/cruising forums. If you're familiar with the popular ones, ask for info on a specific place and you'll likely get up to the minute info from someone who's in the area, instantly.

 

There's facebook pages on cruising areas as well. Ask for info and in minutes you'll start seeing recommendations for anchorages, provisioning, what's going on that day,....etc.

 

I have some friends who cruised the Atlantic rim a few years ago. They spent a lot of time on the coast of Maine (2 seasons in fact). He loves to write and posted often on AC along the way. As a visitor from the UK his posts were very interesting to compare alongside more local sailors. AC is handy even as a local sailor. You can't possibly visit all the nooks, crannies and coves in Penobscot Bay. I'm happy to find info on a spot we're visiting for the first time.

 

Everybody is a pundit whether writing a cruising guide or posting online. I often had a gripe with Taft about his ratings of places (but he was deceased, then).

 

There's a lot more out there today than just 0 to 5 stars as an indicator of destinations. You've gotta find it.

 

 

And still the Rindlaub Taft Guide is a valuable tool. I'd say the best cruising guide to the coast of Maine today, is an annex of various resources -online and in print - that are easily available.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

1. The example boater who sustained damage above described it in a post where he was giving nothing but complements to ActiveCaptain. Unfortunately, he hadn't followed some of the info. Others assisted him in understanding the approach.

 

2. Although I used to live in Maine, I don't any longer. I created my share of anchorages in the Penobscot Bay that I had been to. 99%+ of the data was filled in by everyone else including the Penobscot Bay.

 

3. A week ago, I was a speaker at NOAA's Hydrographic Services Review Panel board meeting in Seattle. This is the planning committee that directs NOAA's efforts at hydrography and nautical charts. My talk was called, "Every Crowd Has a Silver Lining" and discussed the current state and future capabilities of crowd-sourcing hydrography. This meeting included the very top experts of hydrography in the world with more time for discussion about my topic than the presentation itself. Navionics' SonarCharts were discussed and no one really understood how they put together the charts they display. I have specific examples where the SonarChart data could not have been collected from a boat unless the boat's depth wasn't corrected for tide, transducer placement, or spacial correlation to the GPS. Navionics gives no information about how the data is combined and unfortunately, gives some very erroneous data that would make anyone change their plans when, in fact, the problems displayed just don't exist. The contours appear to be all precision and no accuracy, a dangerous combination for charts.

 

Steve (Smackdaddy) has an agenda. It's not based on fact. It's based on some odd vendetta from a newbie boater who mixes in shades of truth to attempt to make a convincing argument.

 

ActiveCaptain can't have the love of 100% of boaters. We'll accept the 85% we have and strive to improve. If anyone needs the real story behind any of the claims, I'd be happy to provide it off-topic. Nothing described is, well, as it is. There is an ActiveCaptain Facebook group, one of the largest boating groups in Facebook, where the topics could be discussed among a few thousand boaters who are familiar with ActiveCaptain's advantages and issues.

 

I still think that the Cruising the Maine Coast is a great resource and I'd love to meet Curtis Rindlaub when we're anchored for the month in Smiths Cove in Maine. I hope everyone else has a great summer wherever your adventures take you.

 

Sorry to pollute a Maine centered thread fellas - but...

 

To JimInHalifax's comment - see? Just like with BS, this is why I feel obligated and compelled to go 'round with ACDude (ACD). There are A LOT of similarities in their approach. Let me show you what I mean:

 

First, with both BS and ACD, the tactic is to blame the customer - not the product - when things go south. Just click on that photo I posted above of the busted rudder and prop and look at what she said...

 

" Will update it asap...we turned at the red marker and tried to shoot 212 degrees as told and as written...never made it past 209 and grounded...tried to back off and backed into something under water :( bent the prop and tore our rudder

...

 

lesson learned (the hard way:( thankful for tow boat us membership and harbor host at tarpon springs - boat is currently on the hard for rudder/ prop repairs:)"

 

Okay, so to ACD's comment #1 above. First, it's a she, not a "he". But what does he care? Second, ACD blames her for "not following some of the info". Now, being that AC is ALL ABOUT INFO that your supposed to be able to trust, what the hell does that mean? She specifically mentions that she followed the directions given in AC!

 

Now, so that there is no question of "shades of truth" - look for yourself at the actual chain of comments, etc. in that post...

 

https://www.facebook.com/groups/activecaptain/permalink/1510517142322169/?match=Y2FsYWRlc2kgc3RhdGUgcGFyayBlbnRyYW5jZSxlbnRyYW5jZSxjYWxhZGVzaSxzdGF0ZSxwYXJr

 

As for "others assisting in understanding the approach", here's what ACD himself said...

 

Jeffrey Siegel Yeah - get a hazard there. NOAA needs to see that the depths aren't as charted. Try to give the best MLW depth you can remember seeing. Or use your boat grounding depth and the tide level. There should not be a 4 foot sounding there.

 

NOAA needs to see? Now the above comment obviously applies to some of the other points ACD has just made in his post here, but let's not get ahead of ourselves. Another member of the ACFB group then posts this in response to ACDs reply...

 

Suggest moving current hazard to grounding location is better option. Current hazard notes off channel shoaling near grounding location.

 

Then another with this...

 

The instruction on the marker and turn just plain do not work. At 37" draft have picked my way through this mine field a number of times. Tricky at best.

 

The ONLY reply that could be construed as assisting "him [who is actually a her] in understanding the approach" would be this reply...

 

The 4' sounding may be correct. The OP mentioned 5' draft. Also, Jan 28 had wind from the north exceeding 15 kts associated with a strong high-pressure system. I live in Pinellas on Boca Ciega Bay. The actual tides have been significantly below tide table values, perhaps about 1 ft lower.

 

So, why is this a big deal? Well, for several reasons...

 

1. The AC info was clearly wrong. And that info resulted in what I assume is easily a few thousand dollars in damage. Now, this is an even bigger deal due to AC's Terms of Service. Look at where liability lies with AC's info. It lies with the members who post that info - not AC.

 

 

Intellectual Property Owned by You

All Intellectual Property posted by you on the Sites is owned by you. By posting such content, you hereby grant us a non-exclusive, transferable, sub-licensable, royalty-free, worldwide license (the “IP License”) to use, reproduce, modify, perform, display, distribute, and otherwise disclose any content that you post on or in connection with the Sites for any lawful purpose. You represent and warrant that you own or control all rights in and to such Intellectual Property and have the right to grant the license granted above to us and our licensees, successors and assigns. You understand and acknowledge that you are responsible for any Intellectual Property you submit or contribute, and you, not Active, have full responsibility for such content, including its legality, reliability, accuracy and appropriateness. We are not responsible, or liable to any third party, for the content or accuracy of any Intellectual Property posted by you or any other user of the Site.

 

So if you get a litigious "him" with several thousand dollars of boat damage - where does "he" go if he wants to do the legal nasty? You got it.

 

2. This incident also shows exactly the problem AC can create: Trusting the AC info over the chart info for navigation purposes (despite convenient disclaimers). If the NOAA chart shows a sounding that is too shallow for a boat, yet the AC marker disputes that and says go for it, where should you put your trust? Clearly, in this case, the trust in AC was seriously misguided. But it's "local knowledge" right?

 

BUT, even worse, ACD then implies that NOAA needs to change the chart in this area???? A 5' draft boat runs aground on a 4' sounding and NOAA's charts are questioned? Where do you think that notion of trusting AC over the charts is coming from? See the problem?

 

3. You know I love irony. Here is what ACD Tweeted at me when I was talking about using Waterway Guide for planning...

 

post-31750-0-94768400-1493469461_thumb.png

 

Actually, it appears you need that towing insurance for AC as clearly stated by AC's own member...

 

love active captain and all of the local resources! and our boat us towing membership is priceless! so easy to use, waited less than an hour and it saved us from a 900$+ tow bill!

 

Of course, ACD tweets stuff like this at me quite a bit, then deletes those Tweets when I prove him wrong. Always fun.

 

Second, as with both BS and ACD, the tactic is throw second-hand shade everywhere to make yourself look better. As for NOAA vs. Navionics and ACD's obviously esteemed, yet vaguely-Asiatically-offensively-entitled presentation - I'll agree that SonarCharts are definitely a work in progress (by design). But it is a product from a trusted company that has been doing this stuff for over 30 years. Of course, this crowd-sourcing hydrography is precisely what ACD himself apparently wants to get into as well (one of the reasons for his interest in Signal-K which I've also covered pretty extensively). So back to the BS-esque pound of salt when considering ACD's critiques in this area. After all, he posted a pretty scathing FB blast against a competitor for instituting boater feedback into its product, saying they were copying what AC was doing and needed to be spammed by his members. Luckily, his own members called him out on it and he removed the post (as he does). But now ACD himself seems to be looking to copy SonarCharts? Yes - as I say - pound of salt.

 

Look, I don't know exactly what "the very top experts of hydrography in the world" can't understand about what Navionics is doing with SonarCharts. There is plenty of information on it. Maybe they just didn't understand what ACD was telling them about it? After all, when ACD is saying stuff like...

 

 

Navionics gives no information about how the data is combined and unfortunately, gives some very erroneous data that would make anyone change their plans when, in fact, the problems displayed just don't exist. The contours appear to be all precision and no accuracy, a dangerous combination for charts.

 

...while those experts are looking on their phones at that rudder and prop on the ACFB account while he drones on...well, I could certainly understand the confusion. I mean, remember above where he was advocating changing NOAA's charts based on this incident? Is that the precision and accuracy that brings safety to the boating world?

 

So, do I have an agenda? Absolutely. I challenge boating world BS - always - whether it comes from Brent Swain or ACDude or anyone else. It's just my thing. And that's especially true if a spewer is in the trust business. But, as above, I always provide evidence for my arguments. Look for yourself. ACDude and Brent Swain are just very, very similar. No "shades of truth" required.

 

More importantly, I don't "blackhat" people behind the scenes...

 

To that last point, I need to go clean out my spam folders again - which suddenly became very full (~1K messages a day) right after ACD's comment on my blog where I'd compared Waterway Guide and ActiveCaptain (which kind of started all this hubbub). Coincidence?

 

Oh well. I'd been warned.

 

Now, back to Curtis Rindlaub. He certainly seems to be the guy to trust in Maine.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Trusting anyone's free information, when they have no liability for its accuracy is worth what you pay for it plus/minus a risk/reward.

 

I would also bet the average recreational boaters does not understand water level and chart datums, nor the depth and position offsets betwixt sounder and GPS, nor reproducibility of position, or as above weather (and runoff) effects on predicted tides.

 

If your chart were accurate to 10 meters horizontal and 1 meter depth on the position of a countour, or a rock, that should be quite sufficient for prudent use. If you need to venture closer and thinner, you'd best be using your own lookout.

 

Had a great conversation with USCG Chief on buoy tender Aspen. The have their GPS over the hoist the use to position the anchor for ATON. Their chains come in 90' "shots". The get the anchor within a meter of indicated position, and put as many chain shots down as prudent for tide and depth. The buoy floats in a circle around the anchor, depending on state of tide.

 

Are private nav aids anywhere near that close ? Our racing marks are set every week by a crew of octogenarians, We are glad they have time to go do it. Errors are <100 m in general, just enough to invalidate a layline on nav.

 

The old advice of leaving one trap buoy inshore was a gross that fishermen don't risk traps near snags, and want 10 feet at low tide.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think I have a copy of every cruising guide to Maine on the boat. The visual guide was done by a Hinckley 52 owner who's also a flying enthusiast. The photos were taken on clear, calm days where you can SEE the ledges in harbor entrances, this is particularly useful in situations like the eastern tickle into Burnt Coat Harbor on Swan's Island. You can see exactly where the ledge is.

 

I have another guide, I can't recall who wrote it, but it's 2 volumes, lots of maps and charts in pockets. The problem (for me) is that the guy sailed, I think, maybe a 26' shallow draft boat with a very small motor, if any. At Frenchboro, he suggests anchoring in the inner harbor, up past Lunts Wharf. I took a look at the entrance with my 42' and chickened out. Glad I did. I picked up a mooring and went ashore to scout it. It would take a bravery I don't possess.

 

The only ones we really use anymore are Taft and Rindlaub and the visual guide. Taft is great for sitting below out at night with a glass of wine, playing scrabble with the family, and figuring where to go tomorrow. When the new edition came out I got a copy and sent my old one to Ajax. He still hasn't used it.

 

For the six years we kept the boat at Hinckleys in SW harbor, we spent about 2 months each summer cruising Maine with the family, it was truly magical.

 

I'm doing the Eggemoggin Reach Regatta on a 48' Brooklin/Alden custom, I've watched it before, but never participated. I'm pretty excited. We're taking my boat along for more accommodations, and to head for the Bras D'Or after the race.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Taft is great for sitting below out at night with a glass of wine, playing scrabble with the family, and figuring where to go tomorrow.

 

Now this is what a cruising guide should be.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"head for the Bras D'Or after the race."

 

Truly a rare place. Austere and lovely. Sailed out through the narrows on the tide with asymmetric, mizzen and main something over 10kts SOG going to Sydney.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

I'm doing the Eggemoggin Reach Regatta on a 48' Brooklin/Alden custom, I've watched it before, but never participated. I'm pretty excited. We're taking my boat along for more accommodations, and to head for the Bras D'Or after the race.

 

You're in for a treat. That's quite a race with a good group of people that take their wooden boats, very seriously. Many of the entries come out of my harbor. Some owners lavish great amounts of $ on their boats primarily to race in that series (it starts in Castine, races to Camden then onto Brooklin for the actual Eggemoggin Reach Regatta).

 

And there are also owner maintained boats that race. A huge eclectic fleet and group of people. It's become a week long event.

 

The whole area is a perfect anchorage but if you want to get away to a nearby spot, the Tory Islands are a good anchorage.

 

Here's PALAWAN launching. A 1952 S&S design, 47 LOA, 11'3" beam, she is an old war horse of ocean races. The owner races in the ERR every year. It's a high point of his season.

 

34338751096_7562da46a7_h.jpg

 

In fact, these boats I shot this weekend launching at the docks, will all be in the ERR. Right down to carbon fiber rig on the end. All wood. Times have changed.

 

33995494300_c5d978849a_h.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We first bumped into the owner of Palawan 10 or 11 years ago at McGlathery. He noticed my (then) young son doing odd things with the sand and asked him what he was doing. Chris replied " testing the sand with weak acid to determine if it's biologic or abiologic". They became friends pretty quickly. He's a very, very nice guy. There was one summer he was single-handing around Maine with a broken arm in a cast. I haven't been to Castine for a while, I wonder if Falcon is still there.

 

The all wood boat I'm crewing also has a carbon mast. Big fractional rig, deep fin keel with a semi bulb, carbon rudder. Raised panel Herreshoff interior.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I haven't been to Castine for a while, I wonder if Falcon is still there.

 

I lived in Castine for 24 years. The owner and Falcon are both still in Castine. I've been out on her - she demonstrates the design genius of S&S. I'll be back this summer on the only real estate I own - a mooring in Smiths Cove. And gosh, even for that, I'm only renting a small space on the bottom.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Cool. We met them some years ago on a visit, went out on Falcon, had cocktails at their home. I look forward to reconnecting.

 

Maybe we'll meet. I sail a Hinckley SW 42, Sparky.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Maybe we'll meet. I sail a Hinckley SW 42, Sparky.

 

Come back into Smiths Cove - our boat is rather unique. We serve Dark & Stormies to anyone who rafts up!

 

Red Head 500

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Maybe we'll meet. I sail a Hinckley SW 42, Sparky.

 

Come back into Smiths Cove - our boat is rather unique. We serve Dark & Stormies to anyone who rafts up!

 

 

 

Sweet! I love Dark and Stormies! But I tend to puke after 4 or 5. Just have a bucket handy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

Maybe we'll meet. I sail a Hinckley SW 42, Sparky.

 

Come back into Smiths Cove - our boat is rather unique. We serve Dark & Stormies to anyone who rafts up!

Sweet! I love Dark and Stormies! But I tend to puke after 4 or 5. Just have a bucket handy.

Sparky's sailing to Bermuda in June, as part of the Marion-Bermuda race. I may be detoxing from the things for awhile myself.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

 

Maybe we'll meet. I sail a Hinckley SW 42, Sparky.

Come back into Smiths Cove - our boat is rather unique. We serve Dark & Stormies to anyone who rafts up!

Sweet! I love Dark and Stormies! But I tend to puke after 4 or 5. Just have a bucket handy.

Sparky's sailing to Bermuda in June, as part of the Marion-Bermuda race. I may be detoxing from the things for awhile myself.

 

 

We should be in the Exumas around that time. Come on over!

 

Does that race have a tracker? I'd love to follow the progress.

 

PS - May there be no rescues this year! Or at least may SPARKY be ready again if there are.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"head for the Bras D'Or after the race."

 

Truly a rare place. Austere and lovely. Sailed out through the narrows on the tide with asymmetric, mizzen and main something over 10kts SOG going to Sydney.

Ahh. The Bras D'Or. Fantastic place. But if you want austere beauty head to the sout' coast of The Rock..... a.k.a/ Newfoundland.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now