The Boatist

Sailboat Ownership, Translation Work and Tales of Minor Adventure

Retire early, be passionate, don't worry, die poor

Friday, March 14, 2014

Scared of Heights? Climb a Mast.

Yesterday I was up the mast again, and I was having so much fun I didn't want to come down.

After 3 hours of pure satisfaction, I returned to deck level but only because I was hungry and thirsty.
Top Climber
Learning to love heights, but not mast corrosion.
And the view gets better the higher you go.
Climbing a mast
Did you ever notice how boats look better from an aerial view.
While I was up there taking a break from scraping it occurred to me that the only way to overcome apprehension (or overcome fear) is to simply do whatever makes you apprehensive. 

Can you remember berthing your first boat for the first time, anchoring for the first night, not to mention losing your virginity? (Did I just say that? Can't take it back now.) As you do it more and more, it becomes more enjoyable without any of those annoying sweaty-palm jitters. So, if anything looks intimidating just do it.

Consequently, I'm now feeling affectionate toward the mast I previously hated. I figure I can paint it while it's up. Only the first 20 feet need to look nice and smooth; above that height, I can slop the paint on with a broom. Who's going to know the difference?

If I had a carbon mast like this skipper, I'd have nothing to do.
He told me he also has a TopClimber. The first time he tried it, he struggled to get a couple of meters off the deck and then got stuck unable to go up or down. A crew member had to lower the halyard. That's what happens when the halyard isn't really tight.

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