Nigel Calder explains grounding


In our March issue, we ran a story by marine systems expert and prolific author Nigel Calder about the dangers of not using the proper zoom scale when using electronic charts ("Where did the reef go?" page 38). In that piece we ran a picture of Nigel's Malo 46 Nada aground in Ireland and explained in the caption that Nigel had "purposely" put the boat there. Well, we goofed in phrasing it that way as Nigel let us know by sending us this correction:

"Our grounding in Ireland was definitely not on purpose, and in fact Terrie was quite pissed off, especially given the fact she was suffering from dizzy spells that day which were greatly exacerbated by the extreme angle of heel! A wind shift on a falling tide swung us out of the narrow channel while I was ashore in the dinghy. Terrie, being somewhat incapacitated, was unable to handle the situation on her own and by the time I got back we were well and truly stuck… Interestingly, I have a ton of advice on what to do in such a situation in one of my books – Nigel Calder’s Cruising Handbook – which I completely ignored and as a result the interior of the boat flooded through an open head compartment sink drain. By the time I discovered this, the water was lapping at our extremely expensive electrical digital distribution system. We narrowly avoided catastrophic damage. Definitely a case of ‘do as I say and not as I do’!!"

By Ocean Navigator