What A Nightmare! Getting Hit & Dragging Anchor

What A Nightmare! Getting Hit & Dragging Anchor

Have you ever had one of those days where everything that could go wrong, did?  Well, that’s how we were feeling on this day.  The day we saved our neighbors boat, and then he crashed into us.

You may want something a little stronger than coffee to go with this one.

Just in case you’re wondering, the poor guy on that monohull was very grateful for Jason’s help and understanding.  NOT a sentiment he got from his other neighbors (and he didn’t even hit their boat).  He had just purchased the boat and was a little in over his head…. something we can sympathize with.  Because if we’re honest, we’ve been in over our heads more than once…in the last year alone.

He won’t soon forget his trip to Rarotonga and unfortunately, he didn’t have the good experiences we did to offset the bad.  If we hadn’t just had several over-the-top-incredible days; we might have been out of here in a hurry too.  Bad anchor/windlass or anything else be damned.

I never did leave our boat during that whole debacle or any of the windy days.  I never felt comfortable enough.  I wanted to be ready to kick on an engine at any moment (or ready with a roving fender).  Especially because the reaction time between the concrete wall and our Curiosity was already minus ten.

But, this is just the way it goes when you live a life on the sea.  Nothing is more liberating, exhilarating, exhausting and nerve rattling.  Life out here is anything but boring.

jason wynn rescuing a dragging sailboat
jason wynn rescuing a dragging sailboat
jason wynn helping a sailboat in need with anchor issues

Big Takeaways!

Ground Tackle Is Everything – Or at least everything holding our home in place.  A good modern anchor and chain can’t be undervalued.  We are very grateful for our Mantus Anchor as it hasn’t failed us yet! (knock on wood)

Quick Release Lines – Kent, our broker turned mentor and friend, taught us many things. One of them was to always make sure we tied our lines in such a way that they could be released from the boat quickly (as in not looped through the cleat).  We never truly understood why until watching someone who desperately wanted to get away from the dock struggle to release his lines.

Don’t Panic – Most of us already know this but nothing like a bad situation turned worse to really hammer the idea home.

You can no longer just be a good sailor. You have to be an incredible athlete as well. Having said that, you can be a great athlete, the strongest guy in the world, but if you can’t anticipate and make decisions under stress and exhaustion and think ahead, then you won’t be able to cut it, either.

-James Spithill – Helmsman for BMW Oracle and Americas Cup winner 2010


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drone view of harbor in rarotonga cook islands
  • Anchorage: Avarua Harbour, Rarotonga, Cook Islands
  • Date:  June 2019