Letters from You - December 2017


I am a regular reader of Yachtsman magazine and your articles. However, the October 2017 issue raised some confusion with me.

I am glad your smoke issue was resolved, however, what really peaked my interest is when you said, “After providing my location (to the USCG), nature of distress, and vessel description, I put on a life jacket.”

Why were you not wearing a life jacket when you first got onboard Terry Ellen? The USCG recommends everyone to always wear a life jacket and your reputation as an authority should encourage everyone to wear a life jacket. Please mention that everyone should wear proper life jackets anytime on a pleasure watercraft.

Thanks, Rob Ruby



Thank you for being a regular reader of the Yachtsman magazine and particularly my articles. My piece in the October issue was not my personal story, it was a contribution from another reader that had, what I believe, is a great story for Lessons Learned. I do not disagree with you that everyone on board a vessel, when outside the confines of the cabin, should be wearing a personal flotation device. The USCG and some State agencies may recommend wearing a PFD while on board a vessel at all times, however most of us feel that while inside the climate controlled cabin of a large motoryacht, the wearing of your flotation device is not required. Additionally, many of the new inflatable designs and flotation devices built into vests and coats are very comfortable and most yachtsman keep them readily available putting them on prior to going on deck. That being said, for adults and children wearing a lifejacket is mandatory when water skiing, operating a PWC, while white water boating and while sail boarding. In California, children under the age of 13 must wear their lifejacket at all times while the vessel is moving except when they are in an enclosed cabin.

For more on Personal Flotation devices take a look at my October 2015 article, available online at http://yachtsmanmagazine.com/articles/lesson_oct2015.html

Best, Pat


Hello Kim,

I look forward to your article every month. My sister, Kim, is a breast cancer survivor too. I know how chemo will change a human body and leave the spirit intact. So sweat away and have fun! The heck with what people think!

I’m certainly glad that you saw the light and gave up the rag flapper for the stink potter. My wife and I kept a 22-foot Columbia in Oakland for several years prior to relocating to Seattle. We are members of Seattle Yacht Club, at our Thursday lunches we have segregated seating for sail boaters and power boaters all in the name of fun, sort of. We now spend the majority of our time in Discovery Bay. I sincerely like your water colors. Take care and have fun, this life may not be a test drive.

Carl Graffenstatte III


Dear Carl,

I confess that I do miss the sailboat. For one thing; it was paid for. We still have two, long years left on the trawler. When we were sailing, we cursed power boats. Now it’s the other way around. Even the model boat enthusiasts at Stowe Lake in Golden Gate Park keep themselves separated as power and sail.

Thank you for your words of encouragement. It’s so uncomfortable being old and sweaty but it sure beats the alternative!

Thanks for taking time to write.


Hi Kim,

Enjoy your column. I can relate to the various trials and tribulations you and “Sweetie” have dealt with. We almost became your neighbor about a year ago. Already had a slip there, but situation changed.

Anyway, I read about the fiberglass work Jose and Carmen were doing for you. We need some work to fix some significant crazing on our Sabre 34, located in Marine Village. Not sure if Jose gets over there, but I thought I’d check with you to learn how to contact him, if that is appropriate for you to pass on to me. In any event, keep on with the enjoyable column.

Mike Leinbach


Hey Mike,

I would be happy to pass your contact information along to Jose, or vice versa, just not for the entire world to see. I’m sure you understand. Jose does fantastic work. He is not inexpensive, but you will never find a kinder person with as stringent a work ethic as Jose. Worth every penny, and, if you want to save some money on a big project, he doesn’t mind if you lend a hand.

Thanks for reading our magazine. It really is a labor of love for the entire Yachtsman family.




I figure if my friend Liz Zamora could go to the top of the inactive Haleakala volcano, I would have to one up her by going to the top of the active Kilauea Volcano!  And yes, that is me with my Yachtsman cover photo! 

Thank you Ty and Bay and Delta Yachtsman for using one of my photos for your cover, I am very honored!

Blair Hake



I am having the auditors review this. Certainly ascending to the top of an active volcano to have your photo taken with Yachtsman magazine is more adventurous than ascending to the top of a dormant volcano. However, Kilauea is 4,091 ft. and Haleakala is 10,023 ft. so she has you for total height. Also, Liz hiked to the summit of Haleakala which adds a few points, you did not mention that you hiked but I suspect you did not. Of course you pick up some points as the magazine you are holding has a photo that you took on the cover. You did a great job in any case, congratulations. Maybe we can do some kind of runoff. In west Maui there are some ancient ruins on Pu’u Kukui Mountain I think whoever gets there first you or Liz will receive some special recognition. If you go, take your raincoat I think it is the second rainiest spot in the world. Congratulations on your cover photo too, very beautiful!

Bill H

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