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Currents are extremely important when you are sailing to some destinations.

If the current is against you, it’s like climbing a mountain to get to your destination. Adverse current really slows you down.

If the current is with you, it’s like riding a conveyor belt to your destination. Your speed increases by one or two knots, and there are smiles all around.

The big question is, how do you know what the currents will be when you are sailing offshore, and how do you know your relationship to those currents so that you can avoid adverse ones and take advantage of helpful ones?

There were lots of currents in the Eastern Pacific when we sailed from Galapagos to the Sea of Cortez. I needed to develop a way of putting our position on a map of the current so that I could locate favorable currents to take advantage of them.

Several weeks before setting sail, I started downloading maps of the currents found in the Eastern Pacific on I did this many times over several weeks, and discovered that the currents remain relatively constant with respect to location, direction, and speed. It was critical to establish that these currents were persistent over the intermediate term so that I could use graphics to plot our position relative to the currents in the Eastern Pacific.

I put the ocean current images in a file for later use.

Next, I downloaded our position on our Iridium Go satellite to my iPad. Then I merged the two images in Snapseed as a double exposure to put our position on the map of ocean currents.

You can see in this composite image that Exit Only is on the western edge of an Eastern Pacific current gyre, and the current is pushing us north, which is the direction we want to go.

This system of double exposure and varying the transparency of the layers makes it possible to put your position on satellite photos, current photos, CAPE index photos, or any photo that you like.

The sailors of the twenty-first century now have tools that makes voyaging safer than ever before. None of these tools were available when we did our first circumnavigation. Grib files did not become available until we were half way around the world.

Now we can see satellite weather, ocean currents, surface analysis weather maps, CAPE index, lots of other digital tools to make our sailing adventures less risky.

In the not so good old days, we just set sail and hoped for the best.

Now we look at the weather and make informed decisions about the best way to cross an ocean on a daily basis.

It’s no longer the blind leading the blind.

And that another reason while the sailing life is still good.

Dr. Dave

Captain Dave - David J. Abbott M.D.





Exit Only

See what it's like for a family to sail around the world on a small catamaran

Captain Save Our Souls

Awesome music video that captures the essence of what it's like to sail offshore in a catamaran around the world when conditions are less than perfect. David Abbott from Too Many Drummers sings the vocals, and he also edited the footage from our Red Sea adventures. This is the theme song from the Red Sea Chronicles.

Red Sea Blues

Sailing up the Red Sea is not for the faint of heart. From the Bab al Mandeb to the Suez Canal, adventures and adversity are in abundance. If you take things too seriously, you just might get the Red Sea Blues.

Red Sea Chronicles Trailer

If you like drum beats, and you like adventure, then have a listen to the Red Sea Chronicles Trailer.

Red Sea Chronicles Episode 1 - When Flying Fish Attack

Flying fish assault Exit Only in the middle of the night as we sail through the Arabian Gulf from the Maldives to Oman. And so begins our Red Sea adventures.

Red Sea Chronicles Episode 2 - Pirate Alley

Sailing through Pirate Alley between Yemen and Somalia involves calculated risk. It may not be Russian Roulette, but it is a bit of a worry. Follow Team Maxing Out as they navigate through Pirate Alley.

Red Sea Chronicles Episode 3 - Aden, Yemen

Stopping in Yemen was just what the doctor ordered. We refueled, repaired our alternator, and we made friends with our gracious Yemeni hosts. We also went to Baskins Robbins as a reward for surviving Pirate Alley.

Red Sea Chronicles Episode 4- Gate of Sorrows and Sandstorms

After you survive Pirate Alley, you must sail through the Gate of Sorrows (Bab Al Mandab) at the southern entrance to the Red Sea. The Gate of Sorrows lived up to its name with fifty knots of wind and a sandstorm that pummeled Exit Only for two days. Life is good.

Patreon - Maxing Out

Captain Dave and his family spent eleven years sailing around the world on their Privilege 39 catamaran, Exit Only. During the trip, the crew shot 200 hours of video with professional cameras to show people what it's like to sail on a small boat around the world.

The Red Sea Chronicles is a one hour and twenty-two minute feature film showing their adventures as Exit Only sails through Pirate Alley in the Gulf of Aden and up the Red Sea. The professional footage documents their experiences in Oman, Yemen, Eritrea, Sudan, Egypt, and the Suez Canal. It chronicles the rigors of traveling in a remote section of the world rarely visited by cruisers. Exit Only dodges Yemeni pirates, fights a gale and sand storms in the Bab al Mandeb at the southern entrance to the Red Sea. The crew explores deserted islands on the western shores of the Red Sea, and learns to check the cruising guides for land mines before venturing ashore.

The Red Sea Chronicles also has outstanding Special Features including an Instructional Video on Storm Management that tells sailors how to deal with storms at sea.

And don't forget the two Music Videos: "The Red Sea Blues", and "Captain - Save Our Souls".

The Red Sea Chronicles is a first class adventure that stokes the sailing dreams of both experienced and wannabe sailors alike.


    Team Maxing Out Sails Around The World On Their 39 Foot Catamaran

    Join Team Maxingout as they sail through Pirate Alley and up the Red Sea


    Give your dream machine a shot in the arm

    See what it's like to cruise on a catamaran before you spend a bazillion dollars purchasing one


    View the storm management video to learn how Captain Dave dealt with storms at sea

    After watching the Red Sea Chronicles you will be able to see yourself sailing on the ocean of your dreams

Red Sea Chronicles

Save A Tree Bookstore

Although I like the feel of a paper book in my hand, I love trees even more. When people purchase an eBook, they actually save trees and save money as well. Ebooks are less expensive and have no negative impact on the environment. All of Dr. Dave's books are available at Save A Tree Bookstore. Visit the bookstore today and start putting good things into your mind. It's easy to fill your mind with positive things using eBooks. No matter where you are or what you are doing, you can pull out your smart phone or tablet and start reading. You can even use electronic highlighters and make annotations in your eBooks just like paper books.