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On Peace IV, we have a small GPS hand held plugged in to the ship's 12 volt electric system with a cigarette lighter. It hangs beside my pillow at night and the tiny light is always on.
When we anchor, the little ship shape on the tiny screen has a "cookie crumb" path that indicated our course and it shows us heading up into the wind and dropping back again after Nev drops the anchor. Then the "cookie crumb" course shows Peace IV swinging at anchor and it makes a curved pattern.
At night, when the wind gets up, I can open one eye and see that we are still where we belong, or that the tide has shifted or the wind has changed, etc. It makes a nice night light for us old folks who get up at night two or three times too. Some newer units include an anchor drag alarm and some smart folks can figure out how to set it. We are not quite that advanced here....
Of course we have huge solar panels and lots of them so electrics are not a problem for us, but these small hand held GPS units do not take much electrics anyway. Nev has another small hand held where he does the paper charting and I have a very small chart plotter at the helm which makes navigating the long ICW lots easier. We work together both using binoculars, both trimming sails, both keeping watch and figuring out where we will go.
Years ago I only had binoculars, a compass, and my paper chart and got along fine, but I was younger then and had sharper eyes and did not get so tired so easily. Using two small GPS hand helds and one small GPS chart plotter makes it easier for us old folks to keep cruising. The Intra Coastal Waterway is beautiful but demanding. Offshore is quicker and more relaxing, but was not possible this year and will be less possible in the years ahead, I suppose. But at least we are still cruising and still enjoying the boat and it is truly beautiful watching the waterfowl, dolphins, other boats, etc.
Wish it were warmer though! Who would have guessed needing full thermals and overcoats in Daytona, Florida?
Ann and Nev
Still blowing cold from the NE for you too huh... We sailed today here in Sarasota and sure missed that warm Florida weather
oh and I have an app on my phone called Anchor Watch that serves this purpose quite well.
Always thought it a good idea but never did it until this year after we saw, on different occasions, boats drag that had been at anchor for a couple of days. I have memories of spending the night on deck when I was worried about how well the anchor was holding, I need sleep much more now!
Must be a cold year, we have recently left Catalonia where the weather was 4-5 degrees colder than in previous years according to people we met.
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