Cruising in comfort

I recently helped a colleague and his wife sail their boat from Largs, Scotland to Falmouth, Cornwall and wish to report on the success of the two-on, four-off watch system.

Having done most of my sailing with just one other hand, I had always adopted the two-on, two-off system. This works well in the height of summer when the days are long.

Before the very short nights arrive – the two-on, four-off system, with three watch-keepers is the best I’ve known. Two hours is no time at all to be on watch, especially in the knowledge that the next four will be spent in your bunk.

For anyone who’s not tried it, I thoroughly recommend this system for any long-distance cruising.