Sunk Without Trace: 30 dramatic accounts of yachts lost at sea
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By the same author as the bestselling Total Loss, this is a new collection of terrifying and compelling accounts of yachts lost at sea. The seven deadly causes of loss continue to take their toll, and Paul Gelder has compiled first-hand accounts of shipwreck and sinking caused by Collision, Gear Failure, Stress of Weather, Faulty Navigation, Fire, Crew Failure and Exhaustion.
The moving, emotionally charged descriptions of shipwrecked sailors abandoning their yachts at sea will have you on the edge of your seat. But these accounts are more than just gripping tales of disaster - they carry valuable lessons which the survivors have been able to pass on to all who go to sea for pleasure.
Praise for Total Loss:
'The tales provide gripping if sometimes unsettling reading and many valuable lessons.' - Cruising World
'Sure, you can learn from your own mistakes, but wouldn't you rather learn from theirs?' - Sailing
unexpressed urge to experience a real Cape Horn gale.’ Robinson built Varua in his own shipyard in Gloucester, Massachusetts, starting construction in 1939 – the same year Toad was built – and then sailed to Tahiti, where he lived for the rest of his life. He wrote about this ship and his life sailing it around the Pacific, and through the Roaring Forties to Chile, in two of my favourite books, Return to the Sea and To the Great Southern Sea. But if I take them, what do I leave behind? Skiff and
question for me to reach; but to leeward was the long chain of the Grenadine Islands about 55 miles away. Presuming that the dinghy would not be swamped before then, these should be easy to reach with a following wind, and the only navigational difficulty and danger would be to avoid letting the wind and current sweep me between two islands and into the Caribbean Sea where we would have no more land to our lee until the American mainland. Thus with the greatest possible care, I launched the
before heading to sea. At 2200 hours the first gale warning had been broadcast. Neither of us had heard it. After 2 miles we had cleared the coastal shallows and set course to southward. ‘Well, chum,’ said Bertram, ‘we’re going to be pretty sleepy by the time we get to Cowes. You’d better turn in for a while.’ The situation then, if not too attractive, presented no cause for anxiety. We knew where we were, the night was clear, and the journey, which should have taken about 80 hours, was well
said St Clair, ‘I suddenly realised that this was no movie, so I kicked the liferaft free and fired the bottle to inflate it.’ The liferaft inflated upside down. St Clair and Munroe scrambled onto its upturned bottom and fought desperately to push it away from the boat, which was flailing at it with the wildly rolling mizzen mast. St Clair thinks that may have been when he broke his ribs, but he isn’t sure, as he wasn’t aware of the pain until several hours later. Meanwhile, Harvey and
sections began to separate from each other. Using line from the sea anchor, the men lashed them together again. That evening they drank two more cans of water; and St Clair, noticing signs of hypothermia, encouraged the men to huddle against each other for warmth. ‘We were experiencing cold and little pains,’ he said. ‘Every time we’d get the water fairly warm from our bodies and start to doze off, a wave would come in and make it cold again.’ Thursday, before daylight, the hallucinations