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Vote for the Boat

May 7, 2010 – Port Townsend, WA

(Click on the photo to enlarge it.)

Adventuress was a work boat on San Francisco Bay for many years before being taken to Seattle. She was restored in the '70s by Ernestine Bennett and has been a youth training boat since. © 2018 Sound Experience

Although she'd only been launched the year before, the 133-ft schooner Adventuress had already sailed from Maine to Alaska when she arrived on San Francisco Bay to work as a Bay pilot boat in 1914. John Borden, the founder of the Yellow Cab Company, had commissioned Bowdoin B. Crowninshield  to design — and the Rice Brothers' Yard in East Boothbay, Maine, to build — the gaff-rigged schooner for the specific purpose of sailing to the Arctic to hunt bowhead whales. Sailing Southeast Alaska must not have agreed with the adventurous millionaire as he sold the yacht in Seattle that fall to the San Francisco Bar Pilots' Association — without having bagged a single trophy.

More than 3,500 kids and adults learn aboard Adventuress every year. © 2018 Sound Experience

With her rig heavily modified to accommodate Bay winds, Adventuress plied our waters for more than 30 years — transferring pilots to ships waiting to enter the Bay — before being decommissioned and left to rot in 1951. Adventuress passed through a number of hands — including those of Seattle chandlery owner "Doc" Freeman, who reclocated her north — before eventually coming into the possession of Sound Experience, a Puget Sound youth sailing program.

Countless volunteer hours have kept this classic yacht in sailing trim but she needs a cash infusion to repair her ailing transom. © 2018 Sound Experience

Named a National Historic Landmark in '89, Adventuress is now one of 25 sites selected to participate in the $1 million Partners in Preservation initiative, sponsored by American Express and the National Trust for Historic Preservation. While all 25 are eligible to receive a grant, only the winner of the popular vote is guaranteed one — à la American Idol — and Sound Experience hopes it will be them. Age and rot have taken their toll on Adventuress's transom and the $100,000 top prize will just cover the repairs. We wholly support their effort to keep this historic ship sailing, as well as their mission to educate 3,500-plus kids and adults each year about Puget Sound's ecosystem, and encourage readers to 'Vote for the Boat'. There's only seven days of voting left, so be sure to go back every day to cast your vote. Right now Adventuress has only a small lead — let's make it a commanding one!

Vote early and often! You're allowed to vote every day, so let's make sure a classic West Coast yacht gets the funding she needs to keep sailing. © 2018 Sound Experience

- latitude / ld

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Classy Deadline the 15th

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Will AC 34 Be Sailed on the Bay?

May 7, 2010 – Rome

Vincenzo Onorato Russell Coutts
Russell Coutts and Vincenzo Onorato have a plan for the 34th America's Cup. We hope it involves the Bay. © 2018 Gilles Martin-Raget

“Every candidate city knows that a very strong case has already been put forward by San Francisco.” — BMW Oracle Racing CEO Russell Coutts.

With those 17 words, Russell Coutts buoyed the hopes of every America’s Cup fan who’d like to see the match for the 34th America’s Cup contested on the Bay. Almost as tantalizing was one of the requirements that have been laid down for the next class of America’s Cup boats: they should be able to race in any venue from 5-35 knots. If those two tidbits from yesterday’s press conference in Rome — hosted by BMW Oracle Racing and the Challenger of Record, Club Nautico di Roma — weren’t enough to get you excited about the chances of the next Cup match coming to the Bay, then check your pulse.

The other key announcements?

• The protocol for the 34th America’s Cup will be issued by August 31.
• The design rule will be released by September 30.
• The NOR and SIs will be published by December 31.
• The venue will be confirmed by December 31.
• The challenge period will open October 1 and stay open only until January 31.
• The most likely dates will be between 2013-14.

As expected, the teams have committed to having a professional and neutral race management team not controlled by the defender, and that BMW Oracle Racing will not be sailing in the Challenger Series. Also as expected, they announced that regular circuit-style racing in multiple cities will precede the Cup. That point, plus the timing of the challenge period and the announcement of a three- or four-year Cup cycle point to a lot of activity very quickly on the Cup front. We like that a lot; these guys are sending it, and that’s exactly what needs to happen to capitalize on all the buzz created by ACs 32 & 33. You can catch the whole conference at

- latitude / rg

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Ad: Retail Sales Personnel in Alameda

May 7, 2010 – Alameda

SVENDSEN’S MARINE is seeking highly qualified retail sales personnel for its Chandlery in Alameda. Candidates must have a strong working knowledge of marine systems and components, including sailboat hardware, plumbing, electrical parts, paints, solvents and coatings. Preference will be given to candidates with extensive bluewater sailing or boating experience. Strong computer skills are also necessary. Full- and part-time positions are available. Full-time positions include benefits. Svendsen’s Marine is an equal opportunity employer. Email resumes.

No phone inquiries please.

© 2018 Svendsen's Boat Works

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Is Offshore Drilling a Reasonable Risk?

May 7, 2010 – Coastal U.S.

The fact that more than four million gallons of oil have now spilled into the Gulf of Mexico in the aftermath of the Deep Horizons Rig explosion begs these questions: Is offshore oil drilling a reasonable safety risk? Is it an absolutely essential element in America's effort to become independent of Mideast Oil? And are offshore oil rigs enticing targets for terrorists, given the fact that simply lighting one of them on fire can have such drastic consequences?

Deep Horizons rig spill
How do you contain 4 million gallons of crude oil? Not easily. The Deep Horizons spill is now expected to have a greater impact than the Exxon Valdez disaster. © 2018 Courtesy Oceana

A few months ago there seemed to be a broad consensus among political leaders that, like it or not, we simply must tap into offshore oil reserves in order to secure our energy future. Just this year, thousands of miles of U.S. coastline were opened to gas and oil exploration. Now, however, some polititicians are rethinking their postion on offshore drilling, including the Governator, who reversed his position yesterday, saying he now feels offshore drilling is just too risky.

Unfortunate casualty
Life is full of risks, but is this one worth the possible consequences? © 2018 Courtesy Oceana

"It has never been more clear that offshore oil and gas production is a dirty and dangerous business," says Jackie Savitz, of the nonprofit ocean conservation organization Oceana, "and that our ability to prevent and contain spills has not kept pace with our ability to access oil below ocean waters." Whether or not you believe, as Savitz does, that "alternatives such as offshore wind power can provide more jobs and help solve climate change while never spilling," the fact remains that hundreds of species of marine life — including whales, dolphins and sea turtles — are threatened by the "ever-growing plume of toxic sludge," which is currently on pace to exceed the Exxon Valdez disaster. Threats to the boating industry, of course, are obvious also.

If you have a well-reasoned opinion on the subject of offshore drilling along the California coast and elsewhere, feel free to chime in.

- latitude / at

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Bottom Paint Study Update

May 7, 2010 – Richmond

Yesterday was a beautiful day for a quick haul at KKMI. Photo Latitude / LaDonna
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

A number of readers have asked recently for an update on the bottom paint study testing the efficacy of a new, more eco-friendly biocide, Econea, that this writer and her husband joined back in the fall of '07. Unfortunately, the last two haulouts and inspections have happened during the magazine's deadline, so I was unable to document the findings. When asked how the bottom looked both times — one of which included a reapplication of the paints — my verbally challenged husband's response was "Fine."

The new solvent-based paint (left) worked better than the old version, but couldn't hold a candle to the water-based stuff (right). Note that much of the visible 'goo' was apparently leftover herring roe. Photo Latitude / LaDonna
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Happily, this haulout at KKMI was perfectly timed so I could be there. Jack Hickey, the consultant overseeing the study, once again found no hard growth on any of the paints but he did reveal that one of the test paints has now been applied to every boat in the program. "It's a solvent-based paint that has been performing well in all the test locations," he noted. Of course, he couldn't tell us which paint it is, but we hope to give you the names of all the players at what will be our final haulout in six months. "It's been 30 months so far," said Hickey, "and I think we'll be closing the study this fall."

The only downside to the water-based paint is that it's rather delicate, and doesn't stand up well to aggressive pressure washing. Photo Latitude / LaDonna
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

While the solvent-based Econea paint clearly performed better than the previous solvent version tested on our boat, the water-based test paint — which we insisted on keeping — worked better still. "Its overall performance is moderately better," admitted Hickey, though he pointed out that both were equal in repelling hard growth, which is the focus of this study. We still don't know who makes this miracle paint — or if it will ever be on the market — but we still hope to snag a couple gallons of the stuff before the Econea truck drives over the horizon.

- latitude / ld

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