March 11, 2016

Doing Good While Having Fun

Aussie cruisers John and Leanne Hembrow strike a pose off the entrance to Moorea’s Opunohu Bay during the 2012 Tahiti-Moorea Sailing Rendez-vous.

latitude/Julie Turpin
©Latitude 38 Media, LLC

"It all started back in 2010 with the Baja Ha-Ha," writes Aussie sailor John Hembrow, "and now this." He’s referring to his recent nomination to receive the Cruiser of the Year award sponsored by Cruising Helmsman magazine. Despite the fact that we meet hundreds of new cruisers every year on the Ha-Ha, John and his lovely wife Leanne were standouts due to their upbeat energy and obvious enthusiasm for adventuring under sail. 

Since then, they’ve logged thousands of ocean miles and experienced both the highs and lows of the cruising life. Having spent several seasons in Fiji, John was a key player in developing the SailFiji app for cruisers. And a few years ago, he and Leanne created the now-popular Down Under Rally. Most recently, they’ve assisted in the ongoing relief effort to the outer islands of Fiji, in the aftermath of last month’s devastating Tropical Cyclone Winston. 

Working with the nonprofit Sea Mercy, cruisers joined Fijian islanders in organizing relief shipments to remote villages — in this case, to be carried aboard the catamaran Outsider — a sistership to the Hembrows’ Songlines.

Sea Mercy
©2016Latitude 38 Media, LLC

The pair stands out not only as sailors who know how to live life with gusto, but as travelers who show great respect for the cultures they visit. Their friends here at Latitude 38 applaud the example they set for others who follow in their wake. "Good on ya, mates."

Make Your Plan for Strictly Sail

Strictly Sail Pacific, the biggest all-sail boat show on the West Coast, will open in less than four weeks: Dates are Thursday, April 7 – Sunday, April 10. So it’s high time you marked your calendar and started making your game plan for visiting its many vendors and attending its free seminars.

Prospective boat buyers check out a brand new yacht at Strictly Sail Pacific.

©2016Latitude 38 Media, LLC

To aid you in that process, check out the slick electronic Strictly Sail Show Guide at this link. There you’ll find an overview of eye-catching new products, featured seminars, free sailing opportunities, and profiles on many boats that will be on display and open for dockside tours.

It’s important to note that this long-established show has moved from Oakland to a new location on the Richmond waterfront, with exhibits in the historic Craneway Pavilion, and in-the-water boat viewing at the adjacent Marina Bay Yacht Harbor. (One big plus regarding the move is that parking should be much easier this year.)

Richmond’s Marina Bay and the historic Craneway Pavilion are the new homes of Strictly Sail Pacific. 

Marina Bay
©2016Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Note also that you can save time by purchasing tickets in advance here, and if you punch in the Latitude 38 promo code, "Lat38," you’ll get a $2-per-ticket discount. We’ll look forward to seeing you at the Latitude booth!

Twelve Seconds to Understanding


It only takes 12 seconds to appreciate the difference in speed between an all-out racing multihull such as Lloyd Thornburg’s MOD70 Phaedo3 and a fast cruising cat such as Greg Slyngstad’s Seattle-based Bieker 53 Fujin, which is the gray-colored boat in the foreground. Just watch the video below, shot at the recent St. Maarten Heineken Regatta, from eight seconds to 20 seconds. We think you’ll agree the difference in speed is unreal.

Video by Ocean Images 

Ad: Sale Boat of the Day

The 1930 John Alden Schooner {Design No. 458}
Offered At $395,000

© 2016

On the market after 30 years of ownership, this meticulously maintained schooner is available for sale. Owner recently invested in structural upgrades including a new stern, frames, floors and new chain plates. Dauntless has been featured on covers and issues of Sailing Magazine, Wooden Boat, Nautical Quarterly and Santana magazines.

For specs, photos and opportunity to view this classic yacht, please contact:

Wayne Emme, 619-756-5170 •

© 2016 Ensign Yachts
Forty-six boatloads of westbound cruisers attended the free Tahiti Bon Voyage seminar and party Sunday at Panama’s Shelter Bay Marina, which lies near the Caribbean entrance to the world-famous Canal.
As you’ve been reading on ‘Lectronic Latitude and in the pages of Latitude 38 magazine, recent developments have put the future of the Alameda Marina at serious risk.