July 26, 2018

Book CoverWeather nerds and boaters of all stripes will be absorbed by Bruce Kemp’s account of the monstrous early winter storm, perhaps the largest ever, that hit the Great Lakes in 1913. Countless commercial vessels did not survive the rampage while the communities on the shores also experienced horror.

Kemp grew up in Sarnia, literally fishing on the pier, and has spent his life not far from water as a photographer and journalist bringing boats and sailors’ stories to life. The book reflects that dedication, and equally Kemp’s commitment to detailed research about a topic that grabs his interest.

 



Bruce Kemp Steering Lake Freighter Kemp steering the Algoma Spirit

The most engaging part of the book, from my perspective, is the final trip of the SS Regina, through the rivers that link Erie to Lake Huron as the boat picked up freight along the river, passing by Kemp’s hometown pier, although decades before Bruce watched those freighters ply the St Clair River.

The book is dense, but fascinating and I came away more knowledgeable about freighter on the Lakes, both in the 1900s and since, than I ever expected to. Naturally, the exploration of weather patterns and cyclonic behavior is also highly detailed – if you are interested in that detail you’ll find this a compelling page turner. The human stories of the lost, the survivors and their families is worth the read in itself.

Bruce Kemp Foul Weather Gear Photo Credit: Bill Jackson This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

In addition to watching Lake traffic, sailing, fishing, photographing and generally hanging out on boats, Kemp has made several freighter passages and his affection for them, the people who run them and their families pours out of the book.

Weather Bomb is available from Waypoint Marine Publishing in Merrickville, ON and at selected marine and book outlets.

-JM

Destinations

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The Marina at Blind ChannelOne of my favourite places

By Marianne Scott

Sailing north of Desolation Sound, the Discovery Islands and the Broughton Archipelago offer cruisers a bevy islands with ample anchorages. Tides cause swift currents to run through the islands’ waterways. Few marinas are found in this large, sparsely populated region but one that provides all the services boaters need and especially enjoy is Blind Channel, a marina and resort operated by the Richter family located on Mayne Passage on the east side of West Thurlow Island (50 24. 82N, 125 30. 00).

Read more about the Blind Channel Resort...

 

Lifestyle

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Boat Reviews

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Swift Trawler 47By Andy Adams

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With a light displacement of almost 28,000 lbs, this is a big boat. In fact, it looks and feels more like a small ship than a big boat.

Read more about the Swift Trawler 47......

 

Beneteau Oceanis 46.1By Andy Adams and John Armstrong

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The yachting world has now recognized the Oceanis 46.1 as being just such a worthy successor. On January 19th, 2019, the Oceanis 46.1 won the highly regarded title of European Yacht of the Year in the “Family Cruiser” category.

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DIY & How to

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Sea to Sky SailingSea to Sky Sailing has just been approved as the only Royal Yachting Association (RYA) recognized training centre on the west coast of North America just in time to deliver an epic 2019 season!

“This transition from our previous International Yacht Training (IYT) certification to RYA is a huge benefit to our students as it provides them certification that is known globally as the gold standard for yacht training.  The RYA requires training centres to undergo annual inspections of their vessels, business practices and training delivery in order to maintain a strong standard and guarantee a high quality experience for students. 

Read More about Sea to Sky Sailing......