November 10, 2015

Recovering a lost anchor

IF YOU WANT to call yourself a sailor, you really should know how to recover a lost anchor. Luckily for you, I know how. I found the instructions among a bunch of old magazine clippings that had fallen down behind my desk. So here, in the words of a very old salt, is the way they used to do it in the days before you could effect a quick and painless anchor replacement by flashing a credit card in a West Marine store:

“You will need two boats, an oarsman in each. Fasten a weight to the middle of a long, heavy line to keep it down; also, position weights about 10 feet from the middle.

“Fasten the ends of the line to the two boats, coiling it loosely in each. Row to windward of the estimated position of the anchor, then row the boats away from each other to run out the line so it will be stretched just off the bottom. Row the boats down toward the estimated position of the anchor.

“When the bight of the line catches on the anchor’s fluke, cross the boats to take a round turn around the fluke. Make a running bowline at the end of another line, around the drag line, weight it so it sinks, and slip it down. When the bowline is fast to the fluke, pull up the anchor.”

Yeah. Okay. Thanks a lot, old-timer. So where did I put that credit card?

Today’s Thought
The wonder is always new that any sane man can be a sailor.
— Emerson, English Traits

“How much is a bottle of brandy? It’s my nephew’s birthday and he likes brandy.”
“Well, madam, it depends on the age. Seven-year-old is quite reasonably priced. Ten-year-old costs a bit more. Twelve-year-old can be quite expensive.”
“Gee, that’s terrible. My nephew is 25.”

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