We have put in a bunch of miles traveling up and down the Intercostal Waterway... that wet highway!
Being a sailboat and relatively slow, we get passed frequently by "go-fast" boats.
The "go-fast" boats can leave some pretty nasty wakes behind them that can literally swamp some of the
smaller boats they pass. Now, the proper protocol for passing a boat is this: The boat wishing to pass
signals his intention by either calling the slower boat on the radio or using proscribed whistle signals.
The slower boat then SLOWS DOWN even more. By slowing down, the faster boat can pass you at a slower pace,
which leaves a smaller wake. That's what is SUPPOSED to happen. It often does not. For us, being a fairly
large and heavy boat, wakes from passing boats are really just a
nuisance, not a safety issue. But it can be
pretty scary when a big "go-fast" boat suddenly appears a few feet from your elbow with no warning (the noise
of our own engine drowns out the sounds of any approaching boats). So we invested $15 in a truck side view
mirror which we mounted onto the steering pedestal.
We now get a good idea of what's going on behind us without
having to constantly crane our necks. It's been a wonderful feature!