Happy 2021 from Invisible Crew

You know that feeling when you get caught in bad weather… The crew and the yacht are suffering. The boat slams in the waves. She is moving sideways more than forward. Every time your body warms up again, another wave with icy cold water comes over and soaks you to the bones. If you could step off, you would. But you can’t. So you just have to grit your teeth and roll with the punches. I first experienced this when I was 12 years old, crossing the North Sea from the UK. The feeling of gratitude once we sailed in between the piers of Nieuwpoort Belgium, with the waves subsiding; this was what made it all worthwhile. I wish everyone that feeling in 2021!!! No need to mention that it has been a crazy year. But I am very hopeful for the future. Those working in the yachting industry are incredibly lucky and if they played their cards right, just a little bit, they will have kept their heads above the water. I want to thank all Invisible Crew’s clients for their loyalty and the crews for their great work. I am also very proud to have signed up two […]

Invisible Crew and Save The Med.

Late August I had lunch with Brad Robertson. I have known Brad for as long as I have been on Mallorca, about 7 years now. Invisible Crew has supported his marine conservation NGO for many years when it was still called Ondine. At some point we lost track of each other and it was time to catch up. There was a lot of catching up to do. Ondine has now become Save The Med, an organization that employs more than a dozen people full time, all dedicated to marine conservation. They run several projects raising awareness around plastic pollution and for the biodiversity of the Balearic waters. They have established new Marine Protected Areas and help the government manage these with the data they gather. This is a very simplified summary of what Save The Med does, because their work is extensive and in-depth. Brad introduced me to the Research Vessel Toftevaag. A 110 year old wooden (ex-) fishing boat built in Norway. A magical and unique ship that looks majestic with her wardrobe of 5 dark red sails raised from her bowsprit over her main and mizzen mast. Early September, I joined a 5 day expedition with her owner […]

Canaries instead of Caribbean, The Covid Contingency plan?

Covid-induced-uncertainty is clouding our clients winter cruising plans. So we are investigating quality options nearer to home. Most years, the Canary islands are merely a stopover on the way to the Caribbean. I have personally visited Tenerife, Gran Canaria, La Gomera and Lanzarote. On each of my visits I have been surprised, intrigued, excited and curious to find out more about this large, and especially varied, archipelago. To say that winters are mild here is an understatement. Apart from the odd cloudy January day, temperatures rarely drop below 16*C. Officially recorded highs are as warm as 23*C in November. Most importantly water temperatures don’t drop below 18*C! The real draw of these Atlantic Islands in the winter are not just it’s diversity in vegetation and topography but it’s great sailing conditions. The North Easterly Tradewinds provide a consistent force 3 to 4 breeze. The areas where the wind funnels between the islands are referred to as acceleration zones. An increase of 10 to 15 knots makes for exhilarating Atlantic sailing. It makes the passages between the different destinations fast and interesting. There are many quality marinas receiving blue water yachts all year round. Places I have personally visited: Las Palmas, […]

Lockdown hasn’t been boring for Invisible Crew

While I was confronted with my two very energetic kids being pulled out of school and into my home office, the workload didn’t exactly diminish. Many people died of boredom during lockdown. I had to deal with the saga of one my client’s yachts that was on route for the Virgin Islands. There, we arranged for a cargo ship to pick the yacht up and take her to Palma. They left, just days before countries started shutting down and arrived in a very different world! But in the mean time, I was contacted by the owners of the CNB76 Malaika. They have a very exciting itinerary. On day one of the lockdown, the yacht was in the Galapagos. The US East Coast, but also arctic destinations, are next on the calendar. They were in search of a couple -Captain and First Mate- with a very specific profile. In fact, it was so specific that, when I presented the first couple which pretty much answered to all the criteria, they were offered the position. Malaika is now the 4th CNB76 that we are crewing. For Aenea, another CNB76, we have been plotting out several IF-THEN Covid19 scenarios while finishing an extensive […]