06: Cruising: The Caribbean
Sailing Lessons

Sailing Lessons

We met Jason in St. Thomas – our first showing of Free Range. Jason had just bought a Whitby 42 but was looking to downsize to a smaller, more manageable boat because he’s a single-hander.

Stéphane and I visited him on his boat one night, grilled some chicken wings and burgers, and checked out his Whitby (it’s really fun to see what other boats looks like on the inside/outside, how they are set up, how they are the same / different / better / worse than how Free Range is set up).

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Here’s Jason’s Whitby 42. She is a ketch – this means she has a second sail (mizzen) behind the mainsail.


After talking with Jason, we learned that he is new to sailing, is unsure about his boat (did he make the right decision in purchasing her? Can he sail her by himself?) and is unsure about sailing her.

Just six short months ago, after working 18-hour days for four weeks in a row, we were ready to take Free Range out – our first sail. We were nervous (Stéphane) / petrified (me). Our friend and rigger-master-captain-super-sailor, Mark, saw the nerves and offered to come out with us. We were SO relieved and grateful. Spending just one short afternoon learning to sail Free Range with Mark made all the difference in the world to us.

To honor what Mark did for us and pay it forward, we (and friend Steve) show up at Jason’s boat the next morning to take him out for a sailing lesson.

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Jason, Stéphane and Steve.


Topics covered included sail trim, steering, use of auto pilot and other instruments, docking practice, mooring ball pick-up practice. We covered a lot! And it was a fun day to be out sailing with friends.


Stéphane being a monkey.
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Stéphane got in the dinghy at one point to take some action shots!





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