2019 9th Year At The Helm of this Blog...

Welcome aboard, I'm Foster Fanning owner and skipper of the sailing vessel AQUILA. My mate, Catherine Brown and I are currently based in the Pacific Northwest. We spend about 70 days a year aboard, sailing as much as possible.

As this sailing blog enters it's 10th year my crew & I are Looking forward to more time at the helm as soon as possible...         Hope you enjoy...

How does this sailing blog work?
  1. Navigate to our cruising and sailing stories using the thumbnails in the sidebar to the right. Use the "back" button or "home" below to return here.
  2. Links to websites hosting various sailing contributions from Catherine and I are next in the sidebar.  
  3. Below is an assortment of Sailing, Cruising, Boating interest items with various links and other Sailing Blogs near the bottom of the page.

Flotsam and Jetsam

 Another sailing season come and gone. Logged over 600 miles under the keel since June this year. Visited a number of new destinations here in the Pacific Northwest and met a lot of folks out enjoying the maritime environment. Stories to come.

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Historic German Schooner Sinks After Collision with Containership on Elbe River
Historic Schooner Sinks...


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North To Alaska ~ R2AK 2019 ~
Team North To Alaska

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They’re coming from as far as Texas and Montana. They’re sailing designs by Oughtred, Welsford, and Potter — even a recycled canoe from Craigslist, put back together with wood from an old school building. Online, they’re trading pictures of their boats and stoking each other’s enthusiasm. This small-boat crew can’t wait for June.


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I found this gentleman's perspective to be refreshing and good sailing footage as well. Enjoy...
"Philosophy of Sailing": Solo to Hawaii and Return
Philosophy of Sailing link

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Part of the 2018 Cruise on our SV AQUILA we were standing off Malibu Rapids at the confluence of Princess Louisa and Jervis Inlets three hours awaiting flood slack one Friday afternoon. We noted a convoy or sailing vessels approaching up Jervis Inlet. Chatter over the radio indicated this yacht club group, with a guide vessel, was going to make an early run at the rapids. Consequently eliminating any chance we may have had at finding dock space at Chatterbox Falls. I've crossed the rapids a couple of times in the past years and had good charts and prompted by the fourteen or more boats incoming, decided to do it. We were about an hour and a half before the flood tide let up, in other words favorable flow of water. As it worked out this was some sort of yacht club rendezvous and there were already thirty vessels on the docks and no room for us anyway. No problem we snatched a buoy off McDonald Island and awaited until they all rushed out predawn Sunday morning. And a good time was had by all...
Malibu Rapids just a little too soon link

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Lottsa' fun, good music and fair weather crossing of the AL antic Ocean...
Having a good time crossing the AL antic link

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Multiple boats damaged in fire at marina on Lake Washington


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Have you DUCK DODGED yet? This summer we moved AQUILA into downtown Seattle for a base of operations had a lot more fun doing so than expected.  
Seattle's been DUCK DODGING for over 44 years. Here's a little history of this fun sailing event:
Actually, the original name was the "Tenas Chuck Duck Dodge". Tenas Chuck is the native american name for Lake Union (Chuck means "water", as in the Pilchuck, Skookumchuck, Chuckanut, Saltchuck, etc.) Duck Dodge one would assume means that in order to navigate the course one must either duck Dodges or dodge ducks. Since there are probably more ducks on Lake Union than Dodges, it is safe to assume the latter.
The original handbill announcing the first (technically second) Duck Dodge in 1974 actually has a sub-title of "Lake Union Beer Can Regatta". This was included because a friend of mine was worried that people wouldn't "get it" if we just called it the Duck Dodge.

Rule 1: Starboard Tack has Right of Way

Rule 2: Rules of the road apply
Rule 3: No hitting one-another(With or without boats)
Rule 4: Take all marks to PORT unless noted on Race Course
Rule 5: No hitting one-another
Rule 6: Bribing the committee is against the rules (while anybody is looking)
Rule 7: No hitting one-another
Rule 8: There is no rule number 8
Rule 9: No hitting one-another
Rule 10: Follow all the rules
Rule 11: No hitting one-another
Rule 12: Never make a duck change its course (Dodge the Duck)
Registration procedure: Sail by the committee boat before the start. Tell them your boat name and sail number. Be sure they acknowledge you. That's it!

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Golden Globe - How Safe is Safe?Golden Globe Race 
The first and only rescue of the GGR so far must rate as being as big as it gets. A multinational effort to rescue an injured sailor, as far from anywhere as you can be! They come no better.

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On our sailing vessel AQUILA we couldn't ask for a better canine companion than we have in Pinja our 20 pound, short-hair mini-Pincher/Jack Russell terrier cross. She swims like a lab, hikes everywhere with us and is very clean easy to accommodate
Pinja was featured in NW Yachting June 2018

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Here is another PNW Cruising Family. A fun blog to read and follow:Sailing the Pacific NW
Many of us have been following the R2AK (4th year) but there's a new kid on the block - Seventy48. Seventy miles from Commencement Bay, Tacoma to Port Townsend, Washington. 48 hours to row, paddle, peddle or other wise grunt and grown your way to the finish. No motors. No sailing. Just muscle and a good knowledge of tides and currents. Here's a team we were following closely. They made the mark in just under 29 hours. A Father and two daughters in a custom built rowing craft. Team HONU, Larry Silva, Katy Stewart and Emily Silgard. You rock it!
Team HONU closing in on the Port Townsend finish line of the inaugural Seventy48 with Koma Kulshan (Mount Baker) in the background.

HONU on the last few strokes in Port Townsend with
the Olympic Mountains as backdrop...
Take two nautical sisters and their dad, stuff 'em in a custom
built rowing craft for 29 hours and they still come out smiling. Team HONU!
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The Pacific Northwest signature sailing race turns 75!
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More in the Pacific Northwest - This guy ROCKS!
Kruger shares his unprecedented experience standup paddling 766 unsupported miles in the Race 2 Alaska…and winning.
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Here in the Pacific Northwest:
The Associated Press 1 Feb 2018

NEAH BAY, Wash. -- Authorities say five fishermen who had to abandon ship because of flooding were rescued off the Washington coast west of Cape Alava.

178 years ago today, March 26th, 2017 the Henley Royal Regatta held it's first race.  Henley Royal Regatta

Henley Royal Regatta is a rowing event held annually on the River Thames by the town of Henley-on-Thames, England.

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“I’ve got my Boatman’s License.” And I said, “Well I’ve got a class one Masters’ Certificate, and I don’t need advice from a ruddy boatman. So fuck off.” It was only because he was officious that he upset me.

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Starting on Monday 6 March at 9pm on Channel 4, the TV documentary Mutiny will, over five 60-minute episodes, relive firsthand the ordeal those men faced, using the same traditional navigational instruments and moribund rations.

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Looking to boost your boating knowledge? Anacortes’ Cruisers College might be the place…

Here's a great idea from THREE SHEETS NW: The summer cruising season is just around the corner, and if you’re in need of some new technical skills or simply want to become a better boater, you might not need to look any farther than Anacortes’ Cruisers College.


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Everett woman publishes maritime manuscript her father worked on for years...
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Britain's science minister has named the $300 million research vessel after the famed naturalist Sir David Attenborough.

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Coast Guard rescues 3 from sinking fishing vessel near Grays Harbor, Wash.
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Rare whale attack in Puget Sound witnessed near Everett

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Cruising Thru History:
A story in NW Yachting of the Salish Sea and more...
From 48* North magazine




Dog found alive five weeks after lost at sea - interview with owner



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It didn't take me long to become a RACE TO ALASKA R2A fan given it is in my home neighborhood. Here is a cool video by Wanderlust Films:
The Waterlust Team documents the journey of Tripp and Chris Burd as they compete on a 22 foot beach catamaran in the inaugural Race to Alaska, a 750 mile human-powered boat race from Port Townsend Washington to Ketchikan Alaska.
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Here's the Facebook page link for RACE 2 ALASKA
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Here's a piece on R2AK from one of my favorite sailing magazines - SMALL CRAFT ADVISOR
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From Stroud News: Around-the-world sailor Ana Duprey, 23, from Nailsworth safely passes halfway point in her epic journey


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Seahawks sailing team heads to Ireland (That Cape Cod Seahawks not Seattle Seahawks - different sport)...

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Upside-Down Whale 'Tail-Sails' Off The Coast Of Maui In Incredible Footage

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From ScuttleButt Before Paul Cayard and John Kostecki got inducted in the US National Sailing Hall of Fame, or Jimmy Spithill became a 2-time America’s Cup skipper, they were laying the foundation at Balboa Yacht Club’s International Junior Match Race Championship – the Governor’s Cup.

02.27.2014 HONOLULU — The Coast Guard is searching through a storm for a man who is sailing alone from Hawaii to San Francisco.
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02.09.2014 Anchor found off Whidbey Island may solve 200-year-old mystery
Commercial diver Kenny Woodside examines the approximately 900-pound anchor found by Doug Monk in 2008 off the northwest side of Whidbey Island.

Some believe it’s the lost anchor of the HMS Chatham, the tender to Capt. George Vancouver’s HMS Discovery.

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I haven't posted anything from DISCOVER BOATING prior to this. I checked out and liked their site. You might too.


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02.07.2014 The Dreadnought Hoax, 1910

On February 7, 1910 the Prince of Abyssinia and his entourage were received with full ceremonial pomp on the deck of the H.M.S. Dreadnought, the British Navy's most powerful battleship. Although the Commander-in-Chief of the Dreadnought had only received a last-minute warning of the Prince's arrival, he had the sailors standing at attention when the Prince arrived. The Abyssinian party acknowledged the greeting with bows as they shuffled onto the ship, dressed in their long, flowing robes, and for the next forty minutes the Commander gave them a guided tour of the vessel. The Abyssinians paused at each new marvel while murmuring the appreciative phrase "Bunga, Bunga!" in their native tongue. Finally the royal visitors departed as "God Save the King!" played in the background.

The next day the Navy was mortified to learn that the party they had escorted around the warship had not been Abyssinian dignitaries at all. Instead it had been a group of young, upper class pranksters who had blackened their faces, donned elaborate theatrical costumes, and then forged an official telegram in order to gain access to the ship. Their ringleader was a man named Horace de Vere Cole, but the entourage also included a young woman called Virginia Stephen who would later be better known as the writer Virginia Woolf


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Just for the fun of it...
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Got a little time on your hands? Want to read a good short sailing story? Check out Salty Sailors Stories at:
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For more of this sailing blog check the archives in the pages to the upper right.