Don’t Transport Hitchhikers

It’s everyone’s job to prevent the spread of invasive species, but the boating community has a special responsibility. These plants and animals can invade a new ecosystem in an amazingly short amount of time because the new ecosystem may offer no natural predators for the critters hitchhiking a ride on your boat. The incoming species wreaks havoc by bringing in disease, by consuming native species, and creating competition for resources. Continue reading

The Necromancy, Artistry, Beauty and Utility of Traditional Paper Charts

I have long been enamored of nautical charts, by far my favorite navigational tool. And sure, I enjoy the convenience of navigating by GPS chart plotter, but there is no art or romance in it. A chart plotter is all push button and cursor with any resultant specific details available in whatever scale or format you desire. In this age of computerized instant gratification, the paper chart takes a bit of work, but you get to look and touch an artistic canvas, discern subtle details by your own eyes, and use the chart as a backdrop to mentally visualize the transit from point A to B.   Continue reading


Boating Season Wrap-Up: Memories and Takeaways From This Summer!

As summer winds down, at least on our calendars, I love to reflect on the best parts. I think about what I will remember and would most like to carry with me into the future from these recent, seemingly fleeting, weeks and months. Continue reading

Moore's Island Dock

Fathoming The Mysteries Of “Ghost” Docks And Finding A Bit Of Hollywood

Perhaps the oddest dock I have ever encountered was located just outside of Greenville, North Carolina in a small pond deep in the woods near my step-grandmother’s farm. And when I say “small” I’m talking quarter acre at most. So small that you could traverse its length in a canoe with a couple of strokes of the paddle. So small that the dock, which only extended about seven feet over the water, seemed like it ended right in the middle of the pond. And ended to what purpose would be the question, as the pond was too small for boating and one could easily fish every part of it by casting from any one spot on the shore—that is, if that dock hadn’t been in the way. Continue reading

1997 - Norway - Sognefjord

Fishing Lessons

My father fished commercially as those of you who read this blog regularly may recall. As well, he fished for pleasure starting at a young age. He didn’t have to go very far to find water, as he grew up on a hillside farm in Norway. It was positioned between high mountain lakes above, and Norway’s longest and deepest fjord, Sognefjord, below. The family farm also had a hidden “fishing hole” that was fed by a mountain creek. My father told of learning to swim in the fishing hole: as a very small child, his older brothers tossed him in and left him to figure it out. Fortunately, he did. Continue reading


Boat Rental Bonanza

Summer is here and the urge to be out on the water in a boat is overwhelming. But what if you don’t have a boat? You don’t even have a friend or a relative with a boat. In the past, your only options were to save up and buy your own boat, rent a boat from a pricey marina, or just sit and cry. Now there’s a new option: rent a boat from the boat’s owner.

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SlideMoor Floating Dock Bracket HD Promo 1

SlideMoor Is Now Available On Home Depot’s Website!

We here at SlideMoor are excited to announce that you can now purchase our Floating Dock Bracket (FDB) from Home Depot Online! Home Depot is one of the leading hardware and home improvement retailers in the world, and we are proud to have such a reputable company standing behind the SlideMoor name. Continue reading


On Adventure, Innovation, and Spring Cleaning…

Fresh spring weather is here and with it some exciting boating-related news and activities – ahead of Opening Day. Several seemingly unrelated stories caught my interest and imagination in recent weeks. Continue reading

How to Play in the Water Chicago Style

How to Play in the Water Chicago Style

When you think of fun in the sun and boating, Lake Michigan probably isn’t the first place that comes to mind. But when you have a city of over 2,700,000 people next to a lake that has 22,394 square miles and the sun starts shining, fun things are bound to happen. Continue reading

Books HD

Hitting the Water With Old-School Virtual Reality

It snowed over the weekend. Only about four inches, but enough to put a damper on the notion that we might have an early spring this year. The forecast for the coming week does not look promising as far as the boatyard doing much launching this week. Not that it really matters given that it’s the unholy tax filing month, and with my duel American-Canadian status I get double filing detail. Sigh…. Continue reading


Kicking Off the Season—Just Me and My Boat!

It is an especially cold mid-winter day. The type of day that gave reason to mammalian hibernation, as just trying keep warm in the cold of the open air would rapidly deplete an animal’s fat reserves. So cold that birds are reluctant to fly and the briny water of the harbor has iced over, encasing docks and mooring balls in a steely grip. Continue reading

Passages Blog Post


During these winter weekends and evenings, I’ve been navigating though some of my rainy-day projects. One of my New Year’s resolutions is to finish digitizing my photo albums, some of which belonged to my parents. The oldest photographs date back to the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. They showcase very different times. Continue reading

Reflections On Fiery Endings and New Beginnings SM Blog Post

Reflections On Fiery Endings and New Beginnings

Happy New Year! The year’s end and the ringing in of 2016 were cause for celebration, as well as reflection for me, and hopefully for you as well. I enjoyed seeing stories and video from cities around the world as they welcomed this new year. I have also enjoyed reading, hearing or watching insightful stories with ideas and observations about ways to make this new year a better one — by tackling persistent problems, by making daunting projects into more manageable tasks, and, and, and, and… Continue reading


To A Remarkable Year!

For those of us in the northern hemisphere, this week marked the first official day of winter, also the shortest day of the year. I am always glad to see the days grow longer again, in contrast to the weather growing colder. The Christmas holidays now quickly follow; full of traditions, gatherings, and (boating-related?) gifts for many of us. Next week, most of us will reflect on endings and celebrate beginnings, as we close out 2015 and welcome 2016. Continue reading


Dear Santa: This is What This Sailor Wants for Christmas

Christmas is in the air and Santa Claus has undoubtedly checked off “who’s naughty and who’s nice” on his annual gift list. And naturally most avid boaters received a “nice” check by their names. But now Santa has to figure out what to get these boater(s). Continue reading



This past week, a story in our local business journal caught my eye. It focused on our area’s aging fishing fleet and the launch of a much-needed new commercial fishing vessel, the first of its type in North America. The story is interesting and thought-provoking in many respects, but it also had the unintended consequence of taking me back in time. Fortunately, I enjoy time travel, as you may recall. Continue reading

Marina Etiquette

Good Manners Matter–Marina Etiquette

The world just works better when everyone uses a little common sense and consideration. That’s why we have protocols, etiquette and customs. If everyone’s on the same page, the majority of the people can be happy. And if not happy, at least not inconvenienced or annoyed. Continue reading


Teachable Moments! When Water Isn’t Your Friend…

Did you see the video clip on the news this week of the Australian teenager in a kayak going through a drive-thru at a flooded fast-food restaurant? It’s generated smiles and laughter, not to mention lots of views. Perhaps, it’s even inspired or eliminated worry for fast-foodies who live in areas which flood.  Continue reading

CL Dock (1)

All Over But the Pilings–Memories of a Dock

Anyone who spends a lot of time on boats likely spends a fair amount of time on docks. Relatively speaking, that is, as the dock is usually just a transit point for getting from land to boat. But along with being an important junction point between land and boat, docks offer plenty of opportunities for recreation on their own merit, with fishing and swimming coming quickly to mind. Continue reading


Are You At Home On The Water?

Have you ever wished you could just live on the water? I’m sure that most, if not all of us here, have thought about it at some point. Was yours a fleeting thought after a great day on a boat, which then dissipated quickly once thoughts of seasonal storms and inclement weather intruded? Did you perhaps let the idea float on by because your current responsibilities made it seem impractical or self-indulgent? Or, are you one of the people who feel or felt something stronger, an insistent pull towards the water – and took, or are planning to take, action? Continue reading


Cheating On Your Boat! Say It Isn’t So!

For some of us, boating is an exclusive relationship. We’re simply in love with one type of boating, or perhaps one type of boat. We stay with our love through thick and thin, and are never tempted. The rest of us though, may have a wandering eye. We may have a little something going on the side. Some of us may even be serial cheaters.

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Isn’t October Cool?

Where I live, seasonal changes are full upon us now. Whereas, when fall officially arrived last month, I was in denial that summer was ending; this past weekend, I dug out my warmer clothing and gear, a reluctant acknowledgement of the persistently cooler temps, foggy mornings, precipitation, breezes, and shorter days. Continue reading


The Art and Artistry of Docking

Docking a boat is an art, and a person who easily and smoothly brings a boat up to the dock or into a slip is generally a good boater overall. But docking should not serve as a litmus test to discern someone’s boat handling abilities, nor should boating skills serve as an indicator of one’s docking ability. In fact, there are plenty of skilled mariners whose boat hulls sport the dings, chafes and marks that serve evidence that docking skills may be less than stellar. And there are also plenty of skilled boaters who consistently depart and arrive at their own dock with ease, but who can utterly bollox things up when confronted with someone else’s dock.   Continue reading