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Thread: The Harbor Master Called me Today

  1. #4026
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    Thank you again for these awesome photos Jim, and I can assure you that you are not the only one ever having a stupid accident with your dinghy. But you know what? The ones we survive to learn from and talk about afterwards are the best!

    What kind of water-temperature is there around this area, did you manage to rescue the dinghy and, no, the other way around: Did you get injured? And how did the story go on?
    fair winds, Dody
    "They did not know it was impossible so they did it" - Mark Twain

  2. #4027
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    At this point, my friend who was still on the boat, came to investigate the loud exclamation and large splash and with a little effort I worked free the oars and passed them up before they floated away. Then I was able to snake out the dingy’s bow line and pass it up so that he could tie it off.

    Next it was my turn. Now, I consider myself to be a fairly strong person, but it became painfully obvious in very short order that there was no way I was going to be able to pull myself up the side of the boat to climb back aboard, rope stirrup to help or not. Once I got my torso out of the water and lost the extra buoyancy from the PFD I could go no higher and that wasn’t high enough to get a better grip that would give me some leverage to work up farther.

    Self-rescue would not be an option this time. Fortunately, I wasn’t alone and working together my friend managed to pull me out far enough that I could get a leg on the rail and climb back into the boat. After taking a minute to catch my breath, we pulled in the dingy (which was happily doing its impression of a turtle) and righted it using the boat hook. No harm done, aside from the knock to my pride, and in short order the two of us were in the dingy headed to shore to meet up with our friend, who had a close encounter with a good sized brown bear while we were messing around and was wondering what the heck was taking us so long. So really, just a normal afternoon in Southeast Alaska.

    Next up, a swim step. I really need a swim step.
    Last edited by jsjpd1; 08-05-2019 at 04:16 PM.
    -Jim

    Sucker for a pretty face.
    1934 27' Blanchard Cuiser ~ Amazon, Ex. Emalu
    19'6" Caledonia Yawl ~ Sparrow

    Getting into trouble one board at a time.

  3. #4028
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    Quote Originally Posted by Dody View Post
    Thank you again for these awesome photos Jim, and I can assure you that you are not the only one ever having a stupid accident with your dinghy. But you know what? The ones we survive to learn from and talk about afterwards are the best!

    What kind of water-temperature is there around this area, did you manage to rescue the dinghy and, no, the other way around: Did you get injured? And how did the story go on?
    I was a nice day so the upper layer of water was right around 57-58 degrees F or 14 C. Not warm but it wasn't bad and no injuries so there you go.
    -Jim

    Sucker for a pretty face.
    1934 27' Blanchard Cuiser ~ Amazon, Ex. Emalu
    19'6" Caledonia Yawl ~ Sparrow

    Getting into trouble one board at a time.

  4. #4029
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    Quote Originally Posted by jsjpd1 View Post
    At this point, my friend who was still on the boat, came to investigate the loud exclamation and large splash and with a little effort I worked free the oars and passed them up before they floated away. Then I was able to snake out the dingy’s bow line and pass it up so that he could tie it off.

    Next it was my turn. Now, I consider myself to be a fairly strong person, but it became painfully obvious in very short order that there was no way I was going to be able to pull myself up the side of the boat to climb back aboard, rope stirrup to help or not. Once I got my torso out of the water and lost the extra buoyancy form the PFD I could go no higher and that wasn’t high enough to get a better grip that would give me some leverage to work up farther.

    Self-rescue would not be an option this time. Fortunately, I wasn’t alone and working together my friend managed to pull me out far enough that I could get a leg on the rail and climb back into the boat. After taking a minute to catch my breath, we pulled in the dingy (which was happily doing its impression of a turtle) and righted it using the boat hook. No harm done, aside from knock to my pride, and in short order the two of us were in the dingy headed to shore to me up with our friend, who had a close encounter with a good sized brown bear while we were messing around and was wondering what the heck was taking so long. So really, just a normal afternoon in Southeast Alaska.

    Next up, a swim step. I really need a swim step.
    Whow!!! Glad you both had a happy return!

    Swim step, I guess you've already got something in mind? If not, I found rope-ladders with wet clothes pretty useless, the more so the colder the water or the higher the exhaustion has got. So, something rigid. For ease of access and use it's nice if it goes down into the water quite a bit, like, let's say 1.50 m or so, which enables one to "only" climb up the ladder instead of going through all kind of gymnastics before getting on the first step or even out. As you don't want to drag something like this behind, it's nice if it has a joint to lift it up out of the water. For someone in the ditch this is of no use of course if there's no rope or something to pull it into the water from the water. And, the point on the boat where the movement is less than anywhere else is amidships to facilitate getting up. Nobody wants to get his head smashed in by a stern out of control only because the waves decided to pick up a bit from the "wrong" angle. Just my 3 cents ...
    fair winds, Dody
    "They did not know it was impossible so they did it" - Mark Twain

  5. #4030
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    Yep, I've got a few plans in mind really, which include a folding boarding ladder that extends far enough underwater to be a useful foot hold. Strictly speaking I don't need a swim step for this but one of the other things I learned this weekend is that it is hard to put the dingy back on the roof from the water. Life would be much easier in that department if there was a step it could live on.
    -Jim

    Sucker for a pretty face.
    1934 27' Blanchard Cuiser ~ Amazon, Ex. Emalu
    19'6" Caledonia Yawl ~ Sparrow

    Getting into trouble one board at a time.

  6. #4031
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    Well that could have ended differently. Glad it was just embarrassing.

    Sent from my CPH1851 using Tapatalk

  7. #4032
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    Yes, it could have. Lots of people drown in Alaska every year. Most of them weren't wearing a life jacket and didn't survive their initial unexpected contact with the water.
    -Jim

    Sucker for a pretty face.
    1934 27' Blanchard Cuiser ~ Amazon, Ex. Emalu
    19'6" Caledonia Yawl ~ Sparrow

    Getting into trouble one board at a time.

  8. #4033
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    Glad you kept your senses and had a hand to get through that. It would suck to hang off the boat for hours or days waiting for help.
    This sig line is proudly provided by The Wooden Boat Magazine Forum. If it ain't The Wooden Boat Mag, it just a rag.

  9. #4034
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    Glad to hear it all came out OK! Not fun at all. I think a platform makes sense - though a good wood ladder can help.

    I have one like this on Neoga. It stays about even with the water, until you fold down the bottom steps - the lowest one is 12-15" or so below the water, 2nd about even with the surface. The hardware is available as a kit & then just build it. Mine fits in 2 eyes permanently mounted to the topsides below the rubrail (not to a genny track like this one) & is very solid. I've climbed it (not easily I'll admit) in full scuba gear incl. a 7mm suit.


    "If it ain't broke, you're not trying." - Red Green

  10. #4035
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    I had some other options worst come to worst, thanks to my life jacket. There was another boat anchored pretty close to us with a bunch of folks hanging out on deck. They didn’t see me go in, but I’m certain I could have swum around the back of the boat and gotten their attention. Or I could have stayed with the dingy and swum it to shore. After the fact it also dawned on me that I probably could have gotten up and stood on the rudder, which would have given me a better chance at getting back in the boat on my own. So really, while it was a potentially serious situation it wasn’t dire.

    But it would have been better to have an easy way to get back in the boat.
    -Jim

    Sucker for a pretty face.
    1934 27' Blanchard Cuiser ~ Amazon, Ex. Emalu
    19'6" Caledonia Yawl ~ Sparrow

    Getting into trouble one board at a time.

  11. #4036
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    Quote Originally Posted by Garret View Post
    Glad to hear it all came out OK! Not fun at all. I think a platform makes sense - though a good wood ladder can help.

    I have one like this on Neoga. It stays about even with the water, until you fold down the bottom steps - the lowest one is 12-15" or so below the water, 2nd about even with the surface. The hardware is available as a kit & then just build it. Mine fits in 2 eyes permanently mounted to the topsides below the rubrail (not to a genny track like this one) & is very solid. I've climbed it (not easily I'll admit) in full scuba gear incl. a 7mm suit.


    I actually ordered a set of that hardware today at lunchtime. It should be here sometime next week.

    I had been thinking about buying it for a while now but was having a hard time spending the money. That was no longer an impediment today.
    Last edited by jsjpd1; 08-05-2019 at 09:36 PM.
    -Jim

    Sucker for a pretty face.
    1934 27' Blanchard Cuiser ~ Amazon, Ex. Emalu
    19'6" Caledonia Yawl ~ Sparrow

    Getting into trouble one board at a time.

  12. #4037
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    All in all though, it was a fun weekend. After I wore myself out with the dinghy fiasco, I spent half of the next day throwing a cast net trying to catch sockeye, then put in a seven and a half hour trick at the wheel to get us all home. I was well and truly beat.

    But we do have fresh sockeye for dinner tonight.
    -Jim

    Sucker for a pretty face.
    1934 27' Blanchard Cuiser ~ Amazon, Ex. Emalu
    19'6" Caledonia Yawl ~ Sparrow

    Getting into trouble one board at a time.

  13. #4038
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    glad for you and your family things turned out well Jim.
    I did a sea survival course recently which worried me how difficult it is to get into a life raft, how difficult it is to get my lard-ar$ up and out of the water onto a 12" pontoon and that was with two strong fellas helping!!! I had on full waterproofs and lifejacket. the water was about 18 degrees C. Doing anything with the lifejacket inflated is damn difficult while in the water.
    Damn scary.
    Another thought for you Jim - some flotation in the dinghy so if the kids get into strife. And a rope around the gunwale to hang onto.

  14. #4039
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    Quote Originally Posted by jsjpd1 View Post
    Well, if it's a contest, I could bump it up to WOT and burn 3 gallons an hour and gain an extra mph or two. But it's probably best to just declare you the winner instead.
    It was meant in a joking manner .... but I am impressed with your fuel economy. I'd be overjoyed getting half that.

    But sometimes it's nice to have a big motor. Like when you start it

  15. #4040
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    Yum - Sockeye!

    Hope the ladder works out well for you. I was lucky that one made to fit my boat came with it. I'm sure there will be some experimentation on how to get the correct fit against the hull.
    "If it ain't broke, you're not trying." - Red Green

  16. #4041
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    I'm planning something like this to toss over, if I don't build a swim step.
    Attached Images Attached Images
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  17. #4042
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    Quote Originally Posted by ben2go View Post
    I'm planning something like this to toss over, if I don't build a swim step.
    Have you tried climbing that ladder? I think you may find it quite difficult.
    "If it ain't broke, you're not trying." - Red Green

  18. #4043
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    Scary stuff Jim. Glad everything came out ok in the end. It's a good reminder to me that I'm not as agile as I used to be and that I too should be thinking about ways to get back aboard solo if needed.

    When I first had Savona and was learning how to cruise single handed I once pulled into the fairway of the marina where I was living and paused there a moment to fiddle with lines and fenders in the cockpit, not realizing that she still had some way on. Looking up I saw that we were headed for the bow of another boat so I hurried up the side deck to fend off - only to miss my hand hold as I passed by the VHF antenna and fall into the water. So there I am swimming next to the side of the boat, which is still drifting toward the other boat. Not really thinking clearly, I made a bit of a panicked leap out of the water, grabbed the edge of the deck a good three feet up and pulled myself back aboard in time to get forward, fend off and sort everything out. Much to the amusement of my dock neighbor who was watching, I might add.

    Back then I was in my twenties, a good forty pounds lighter than I am now (representing a large number of well-enjoyed meals that I do not regret) and had been an active gymnast only a few years before. Zero chance I could manage that feat now, or anything like it. But in my mind I think I'm still that kid who could do a one-handed pull up so I never think about hanging off the boat with safety only a few inches away but utterly unreachable. Skookum Maru has a swim step but even so I think that a boarding ladder needs to be on my list to add as well.

  19. #4044
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    Quote Originally Posted by Garret View Post
    Have you tried climbing that ladder? I think you may find it quite difficult.
    Not that one specifically, but one very similar. Have to keep feet close to the center of the steps. I wouldn't use it as my only means. Just toss it over the side when anchored or someplace that getting out of the water would be difficult or make reboarding difficult. I've never fallen overboard. There is a first time for everything.
    This sig line is proudly provided by The Wooden Boat Magazine Forum. If it ain't The Wooden Boat Mag, it just a rag.

  20. #4045
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    I'm glad things turned out ok with your unexpected swim! I forget how far Amazon's exhaust sticks out of the transom, but I have found on my boat that it is not that difficult to use the top of the rudder as one step and then an exhaust as a second step to get back in the boat. (Tried it out when swimming, not out of necessity. lol) If you can get a hand up on the transom this may work pretty well in an emergency.

  21. #4046
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    Good to hear you’re safe...I love the look and function of those folding wood ladders. When I was in my early teens I had a 7” homemade plywood dingy with a 4 hp motor that would plane. When I would come to visit people’s boats I used to stand on the stem with the motor as a counterweight and hold onto the stantions. It took a great deal of balance and paying attention - I never fell in doing that, but fell in plenty of other times! Probably 16-17 over the course of my youth. I haven’t fallen in the water in a long time but it’s like going aground...it can happen anytime, usually when you least expect it!

  22. #4047
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    I'd put the ladder on the transom. You'd need a way of releasing it when you're in the water. Just holding it up with velcro might work.

  23. #4048
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    Glad you're OK, Jim. A good learning experience.
    Those Alaska brown bears are the big ones, aren't they?
    Ian

  24. #4049
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    Quote Originally Posted by ben2go View Post
    Not that one specifically, but one very similar. Have to keep feet close to the center of the steps. I wouldn't use it as my only means. Just toss it over the side when anchored or someplace that getting out of the water would be difficult or make reboarding difficult. I've never fallen overboard. There is a first time for everything.
    Quote Originally Posted by nedL View Post
    I'm glad things turned out ok with your unexpected swim! I forget how far Amazon's exhaust sticks out of the transom, but I have found on my boat that it is not that difficult to use the top of the rudder as one step and then an exhaust as a second step to get back in the boat. (Tried it out when swimming, not out of necessity. lol) If you can get a hand up on the transom this may work pretty well in an emergency.
    Sorry to come up with this again, but you need to understand that there is an enormous difference between going for a swim on a nice hot summer-day on purpose wearing just your swim-trunks, or accidentally falling in the pond on a fresh day with cold water and wearing clothes to keep you warm. Even if wearing a life-jacket helps you a lot to stay afloat, your clothes get soaked in water becoming very heavy and the possible survival-time in the water drops drastically with every degree less of water-temperature. Add to that your physical condition at the time it happens and you might only have 5 minutes in the water till hypothermia kicks in. No matter what, you need to get out as quick as possible, and with every minute your forces get less and less. Something you might laugh about in different circumstances suddenly becomes an obstacle that can't be overcome. Please, for your own sake and safety, think about your solutions again!

    Quote Originally Posted by Hwyl View Post
    I'd put the ladder on the transom. You'd need a way of releasing it when you're in the water. Just holding it up with velcro might work.
    Transom is not a good place as there is always a lot of movement and you don't know in which situation you might fall overboard. Nobody wants to get his head smashed in being in the water and the transom coming down on him. Amidships is a much much safer place!
    fair winds, Dody
    "They did not know it was impossible so they did it" - Mark Twain

  25. #4050
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    Quote Originally Posted by Dody View Post
    Sorry to come up with this again, but you need to understand that there is an enormous difference between going for a swim on a nice hot summer-day on purpose wearing just your swim-trunks, or accidentally falling in the pond on a fresh day with cold water and wearing clothes to keep you warm. Even if wearing a life-jacket helps you a lot to stay afloat, your clothes get soaked in water becoming very heavy and the possible survival-time in the water drops drastically with every degree less of water-temperature. Add to that your physical condition at the time it happens and you might only have 5 minutes in the water till hypothermia kicks in. No matter what, you need to get out as quick as possible, and with every minute your forces get less and less. Something you might laugh about in different circumstances suddenly becomes an obstacle that can't be overcome. Please, for your own sake and safety, think about your solutions again!



    Transom is not a good place as there is always a lot of movement and you don't know in which situation you might fall overboard. Nobody wants to get his head smashed in being in the water and the transom coming down on him. Amidships is a much much safer place!
    Completely understand & agree with your fully clothed in cold water point. Not saying the rudder and exhaust pipe trick would be easy, but it is always good to know there are available options that might not be thought of in the moment.
    ..... Amazon’s transom is vertical, nothing to come down on your head (no different than her sides).

  26. #4051
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    We have a fairly ugly stainless ladder permanently on the transom. The good thing is it's always there. That lovely wooden one will do you no good stowed on the cabin top.

    Sent from my CPH1851 using Tapatalk

  27. #4052
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    Quote Originally Posted by nedL View Post
    Completely understand & agree with your fully clothed in cold water point. Not saying the rudder and exhaust pipe trick would be easy, but it is always good to know there are available options that might not be thought of in the moment.
    ..... Amazon’s transom is vertical, nothing to come down on your head (no different than her sides).
    nedL, I haven't got anything better at hand right now at this moment, but have a look at this fishing-boat:

    17-IMG_0137.jpg

    yes, she is moving through the water, I agree, but very slowly, and she was turning. She's got a straight transom too. The photo was taken last Saturday, it was flat calm, we had less than 0.5 m wave (that's less than 2 feet). The lower part of the transom is already coming out of the water with the movement of the waves (and the turn, but I haven't got a better photo right now, so you need to imagine a bit). Let there be a little bit of chop from the wind and every wave will lift this transom higher than you can see now. This is something that happens when the boat is stationary, like being at anchor or stopped, not when they are moving. I've got no idea how many hundreds of times I've seen transoms 1 m or more above the water when the conditions pick up a bit - and then smash down in sync with the waves. The sides might roll from side to side, which can be quite a challenge too, but it will never get as bad as at the transom.

    And yes, I totally agree with you that it's important to know about emergency-options.
    Last edited by Dody; 08-06-2019 at 05:22 PM.
    fair winds, Dody
    "They did not know it was impossible so they did it" - Mark Twain

  28. #4053
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    Quote Originally Posted by Dody View Post
    Transom is not a good place as there is always a lot of movement and you don't know in which situation you might fall overboard. Nobody wants to get his head smashed in being in the water and the transom coming down on him. Amidships is a much much safer place!
    I had thought of that, but the transom is the only p;ace one can be mounted semi permanently..

  29. #4054
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hwyl View Post
    I had thought of that, but the transom is the only p;ace one can be mounted semi permanently..
    How about amidships opposite the side your propwalk takes you in reverse? Then at least she's not in the way with docking , and maybe removable with little effort in case you should spend time in a port?

    Sent from my SM-G900FD using Tapatalk
    fair winds, Dody
    "They did not know it was impossible so they did it" - Mark Twain

  30. #4055
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    A couple thoughts on placement and permanence of a boarding ladder. As a practical matter I don't think it makes much difference if the ladder is permanently mounted or hooks into a mounting bracket where it can be removed and stowed, as long as a stowed ladder can be easily deployed. If I was out by myself and managed to fall over while under way the boat would happily motor off without me regardless of ladder placement or permanence. With crew aboard they could deploy the ladder while coming back around. At anchor the ladder will be deployed regardless so it's a wash there.

    As far as placement goes, on the port side stern quarter is probably the most useful spot. It's a convenient spot for pulling the dinghy along side and getting in and out of the boat at anchor. Also since it is the side the helm station is on, it is the side were you would pick someone up if they were in the water and you were coming around to get them with out accidently running them down. That's the way it works when we practice by retrieving lost things and garbage from the water. Retrieving a person isn't much different the any other kind of jetsam.

    But I have a hard time seeing the situation where I would want to grab someone and then lead them around to the stern to climb up while out in the middle of Taku Inlet or some other fun place.
    -Jim

    Sucker for a pretty face.
    1934 27' Blanchard Cuiser ~ Amazon, Ex. Emalu
    19'6" Caledonia Yawl ~ Sparrow

    Getting into trouble one board at a time.

  31. #4056
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    Quote Originally Posted by cstevens View Post
    Scary stuff Jim. Glad everything came out ok in the end. It's a good reminder to me that I'm not as agile as I used to be and that I too should be thinking about ways to get back aboard solo if needed.

    When I first had Savona and was learning how to cruise single handed I once pulled into the fairway of the marina where I was living and paused there a moment to fiddle with lines and fenders in the cockpit, not realizing that she still had some way on. Looking up I saw that we were headed for the bow of another boat so I hurried up the side deck to fend off - only to miss my hand hold as I passed by the VHF antenna and fall into the water. So there I am swimming next to the side of the boat, which is still drifting toward the other boat. Not really thinking clearly, I made a bit of a panicked leap out of the water, grabbed the edge of the deck a good three feet up and pulled myself back aboard in time to get forward, fend off and sort everything out. Much to the amusement of my dock neighbor who was watching, I might add.

    Back then I was in my twenties, a good forty pounds lighter than I am now (representing a large number of well-enjoyed meals that I do not regret) and had been an active gymnast only a few years before. Zero chance I could manage that feat now, or anything like it. But in my mind I think I'm still that kid who could do a one-handed pull up so I never think about hanging off the boat with safety only a few inches away but utterly unreachable. Skookum Maru has a swim step but even so I think that a boarding ladder needs to be on my list to add as well.
    See, I knew that if I shared this little mishap I'd get at least one good story in return.
    -Jim

    Sucker for a pretty face.
    1934 27' Blanchard Cuiser ~ Amazon, Ex. Emalu
    19'6" Caledonia Yawl ~ Sparrow

    Getting into trouble one board at a time.

  32. #4057
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    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    Quote Originally Posted by IanMilne View Post
    Glad you're OK, Jim. A good learning experience.
    Those Alaska brown bears are the big ones, aren't they?
    Ian

    They are the big ones Ian, this one was a big healthy male, I saw him further up the creek after we got back to shore. Apparently he was fishing in the creek as my friend approached the bank. They spotted each other at about the same time and while the bear was not aggressive in anyway he was not at all bother by my friend's presence and actually started meandering towards him, getting to within about 15 yards (13.7 meters) before changing his mind and wandering away.

    All too close for comfort when you are by yourself on the beach with a critter that out weighs you by several hundred pounds.
    -Jim

    Sucker for a pretty face.
    1934 27' Blanchard Cuiser ~ Amazon, Ex. Emalu
    19'6" Caledonia Yawl ~ Sparrow

    Getting into trouble one board at a time.

  33. #4058
    Join Date
    Aug 2017
    Location
    Melb, Vic, Aus
    Posts
    669

    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    Not a permanent solution, but in an emergency you could always remove your life jacket and stand on it to give you that little extra height to get a leg up. Might not be pretty...

  34. #4059
    Join Date
    Jul 2000
    Location
    N.E. Connecticut.
    Posts
    6,430

    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    Quote Originally Posted by Dody View Post
    nedL, I haven't got anything better at hand right now at this moment, but have a look at this fishing-boat:

    17-IMG_0137.jpg

    yes, she is moving through the water, I agree, but very slowly, and she was turning. She's got a straight transom too. The photo was taken last Saturday, it was flat calm, we had less than 0.5 m wave (that's less than 2 feet). The lower part of the transom is already coming out of the water with the movement of the waves (and the turn, but I haven't got a better photo right now, so you need to imagine a bit). Let there be a little bit of chop from the wind and every wave will lift this transom higher than you can see now. This is something that happens when the boat is stationary, like being at anchor or stopped, not when they are moving. I've got no idea how many hundreds of times I've seen transoms 1 m or more above the water when the conditions pick up a bit - and then smash down in sync with the waves. The sides might roll from side to side, which can be quite a challenge too, but it will never get as bad as at the transom.

    And yes, I totally agree with you that it's important to know about emergency-options.
    ahhh,... Got ya. Yes large transom can really act like a plunger up and down in and out of the water,.... point well noted. .. Wasn’t thinking of that.

  35. #4060
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Juneau, Alaska
    Posts
    4,972

    Default Re: The Harbor Master Called me Today

    Quote Originally Posted by cstevens View Post
    Scary stuff Jim. Glad everything came out ok in the end. It's a good reminder to me that I'm not as agile as I used to be and that I too should be thinking about ways to get back aboard solo if needed.

    When I first had Savona and was learning how to cruise single handed I once pulled into the fairway of the marina where I was living and paused there a moment to fiddle with lines and fenders in the cockpit, not realizing that she still had some way on. Looking up I saw that we were headed for the bow of another boat so I hurried up the side deck to fend off - only to miss my hand hold as I passed by the VHF antenna and fall into the water. So there I am swimming next to the side of the boat, which is still drifting toward the other boat. Not really thinking clearly, I made a bit of a panicked leap out of the water, grabbed the edge of the deck a good three feet up and pulled myself back aboard in time to get forward, fend off and sort everything out. Much to the amusement of my dock neighbor who was watching, I might add.

    Back then I was in my twenties, a good forty pounds lighter than I am now (representing a large number of well-enjoyed meals that I do not regret) and had been an active gymnast only a few years before. Zero chance I could manage that feat now, or anything like it. But in my mind I think I'm still that kid who could do a one-handed pull up so I never think about hanging off the boat with safety only a few inches away but utterly unreachable. Skookum Maru has a swim step but even so I think that a boarding ladder needs to be on my list to add as well.
    Aside from a hopefully entertaining story, the other lesson I took away from this is that I am relatively sure that if one of the kids or my wife went into the water near the boat I could retrieve them. But if the roles were reversed, they are not getting me up over the rail. They’re just not strong enough. It’s a sobering thought for anyone out cruising with their spouse or family. Sometimes self rescue needs to happen even when you’re not alone.
    -Jim

    Sucker for a pretty face.
    1934 27' Blanchard Cuiser ~ Amazon, Ex. Emalu
    19'6" Caledonia Yawl ~ Sparrow

    Getting into trouble one board at a time.

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