Thanks everyone getting ready for the season, pen
is to sail the thorny path, Gary you may have a
visit. Lets hope all goes well.
For any upwind island-hopping route, I recommend browsing Bruce Van Sant’s book, ‘Tricks of the Trades’. BVS has written other books on the Thorny Path (see Books by Bruce Van Sant), some with tips specific to individual islands in the Caribbean.
In ‘Tricks of the Trades’, BVS occupies 50 pages with valuable stuff on the island effects on trade winds, hurricanes, etc.
BVS self-published his books. ‘Tricks of the Trades’ has a fault: page 91 is followed by p. 94 (i.e. pages 92 and 93, right in the middle of that most valuable section on how to work upwind against trade winds, are missing. The two pages are freely downloadable, as *.pdf, from the above URL). So here’s a tip: if you find a copy of ‘TotT’ at your local 2nd hand bookshop, point out that pp. 92-3 are missing and ask for a discount.
To finish off this ‘miscellaneous’ post in the middle of a ‘varnishing and finishing thread’, I will add the entry for ‘thorny path’ from Zygote’s word list (the latest version, not the out-dated version on the Net):
thorny path n. an island-hopping sailing route to windward, especially any of the routes south from the eastern coast of North America and against the prevailing trade wind. [from cruising English 1948 thorny path, term devised by Carleton Mitchell (in his 1948 cruising guide Islands to windward: Cruising the Caribees) to describe the island hopping routes for cruising sailors from the eastern coast of the USA towards South America; from poetic English 18th century thorny path, descriptor used variously for any difficulty path to be followed; from Middle English c1340 thorny, painful, worrisome (figurative use for the busy-ness and anxieties of life); from Old English c1000 ðorniȝ, thorny, abounding with thorn-bearing plants; from Old English c800 þornum (plural), thorns, a sharp stiff woody process on the stem of certain plants, a prickle; from proto-Germanic *þurnuz, a thorn, a prickle; from PIE *trunu, a thorn; from PIE *(s)tern, a sharp stalk, possibly the name of a thorny plant; possibly from PIE *(s)terh, stiff; + Old English c1000 pað, a path, a line of course along which a person, vehicle, or animal moves or plans to move; from Old English c700 paeð, a path or way beaten or trodden by humans or animals; from proto-Germanic *paþaz, a path; the probably from Scythian *panta, a path; probably from Old Persian *patha, a path; likely from PIE *pent, to find one’s way] Carleton Mitchell (1910-2007) was born in New Orleans and learned to sail on the nearby estuary called Lake Pontchartrain. When Mitchell’s mother asked her 10-year old son what he wanted to do, he said ‘I want to sail and to write about it’. He dropped out of Miami University, Ohio, hoping he could make a living writing Western novels. Failure led him to work as a stevedore in Miami, Florida, and then to find his way by sea to the Bahamas where he taught himself to be a great photographer. During World War 2, Mitchell organised and led (1942-6) the US Navy Combat Photography Unit. In 1946, he bought John G. Alden’s Malabar XII design and named her Carib before cruising the Caribbean. He paid his way with a photographic essay published in National Geographic and his cruising guide Islands to windward. In addition to authoring eight books, Mitchell won three Southern Ocean Racing Conference championships in the 1950s, three 635 mile Newport to Bermuda races (1956, 1958, 1960), and one Miami to Nassau race.