Newport, Rhode Island, is a name that resonates with all sailing enthusiasts—it’s the universally recognized capital of the sailing world. Our return to this maritime haven brought back memories of 2018 when we attended the start of the Volvo Race leg—an unforgettable celebration of sailing. Despite being tardy for a daytime sunset due to persistent rain, we couldn’t resist the allure of this sailing capital.
Navigating Newport’s harbor filled with mooring buoys at night presented a challenge, but we successfully reached the outer dock near Safe Harbor Shipyard. This company, operational year-round, provided floating docks with power—a welcome respite after a day accompanied by pouring rain. As we secured our mooring, we found ourselves surrounded by superyachts—a world of colossal sailing toys. While mooring in marinas, we often contemplate engaging superyacht owners in collecting ocean data, but in Newport, these vessels were in winter hibernation, devoid of visible activity. December, not the most favourable month for sailing, saw superyacht owners absent from their vessels. Exploring the boatyard offered us a novel experience, showcasing the meticulous work conducted on yachts at the highest standards. Safe Harbor’s competence extends beyond managing marinas, impressively encompassing top-notch yacht work.
Another intriguing encounter at the shipyard involved the brigantine Corvith Cramer. In 2004, I had the privilege of sailing on this vessel, testing the newly developed Micro-salinometer. The journey from Rockland to Woods Hole mirrored the path I now traversed. The brigantine serves as a training ship for the Sea Educational Association, where future oceanographers engage in practical maritime experiences, including handling oceanographic instruments such as the RBR CTD measuring system. Sailing on a real ship adds an extra layer of magic to the learning experience.
The persistent rain prompted us to bid farewell to Newport, hoping for a future reunion on a sunnier, windier day—ideal conditions for embracing the true spirit of sailing.