Category: Environment

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The Sound of tranquillity

The Sound of tranquillity

First – a confession. I like to think I’ve sailed extensively in the Marlborough Sounds. That’s only half-true. In reality – I’ve sailed within the Queen Charlotte Sound. And there’s no denying its majesty and appeal – breathtaking scenery, idyllic anchorages, great fishing, fun restaurants, exceptional wine. But the ‘Sounds experience’ changed for me earlier...

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Rodney Russ: Southern Ocean Explorer

Rodney Russ: Southern Ocean Explorer

Russ has spent more time in this ocean than most and has shown more people its beauty than anyone else I know. To say he is a passionate advocate for Southern Ocean wildlife conservation is the understatement as wild as a wandering albatross. Russ’ story starts not in the depths of a Southern Ocean gale...

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Sub-Antarctic Shuttle

Sub-Antarctic Shuttle

Voyaging in the Roaring Forties and Screaming Fifties demands a heightened awareness. Weather maps, the sky and barometer are consulted more often because, when the weather does come away, the change is sudden and often violent. Mollymawks and albatross wheel overhead as the staysail ketch Evohe shoulders her way through the unending westerly swell. Squadrons...

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Island transporter: Lloyd Stevenson vaka motu

Island transporter: Lloyd Stevenson vaka motu

A 50-foot, twin-hulled, open-ocean sailing canoe, a vaka motu is a versatile, eco-friendly work boat built to carry people and cargo within lagoons and over small distances between Pacific islands. It’s based on a traditional Polynesian design and this one is the third from Auckland’s Lloyd Stevenson Boatbuilders. Two more are in production. And because they...

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Cruising the Greenland fjords

Cruising the Greenland fjords

My iPhone had a serious fault. I knew that because its text made no sense: “Would you like to sail through the North West Passage with me?” Except that the text came from my friend Ross Field and that is the sort of text he would send. Ross was planning to sail from England, across the...

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Birds in the bilges

Birds in the bilges

Watch the wall my darlings,” Rudyard Kipling advised in his 1906 poem The Smuggler’s Song, “while the gentlemen go by.” He was warning Cornish villagers about the menfolk smuggling “brandy for the parson and baccy for the clerk,” across the English Channel. But smuggling is no longer the preserve of gentlemen and it’s likely that...