It is well known that the most dangerous part of sailing is not the ocean crossing but the dinghy ride particularly in cold water and on fast flowing rivers.
But unfortunately a tender was found on Saturday on the rocks, engine in gear with no fuel in the tank. 48 hours later the body of a man from Quebec was recovered from the bay. We think it is our anchor neighbour who is missing. We watched him arrive alone and very competently lay down his anchor. A few days later and we look out every evening and morning to see his dinghy davit lines hanging empty.
His boat soldiers on as if nothing has changed and the anchor light burns brightly.
This prompted some experienced cruisers to confirm some very neat strategies for survival when travelling alone at night by dinghy:
- Wear a footstrap like a surfer
- Use the kill cord in combination with the footstrap
- Have a canvas strop in place for use as a ladder to board the dinghy as this may not be possible when ‘tired’
Good life saving tips.
The authorities arrived one lunchtime and a lady boarded the boat. We met her and she was the courageous wife of our missing neighbour. He was equally brave ince he had sailed single-handed without learning to swim. That takes a love of the sea and guts to do.