SEA·MAN·SHIP /ˈsēmənˌSHip/: “The skill in, and knowledge of the work of navigating, maintaining, and operating a vessel.”
True seamanship must be both learned and earned. And preferably in that order.
The armchair sailors out there can become excellent prognosticators on preparation, decision making and leadership with their feet propped up in front of the fireplace, but they’ll never know what it takes on the high seas unless they cast off the lines. Likewise, even the greenest landlubber can have a successful voyage by dumb luck.
True seamanship, then, is the art of combining both knowledge and practice. Only then can a sailor expect to have the kind of repeatable success on the ocean that elevates sailing to — in our view — the philosophical, even spiritual realm.
Where 59º North’s offshore passages fulfill the earned half of this equation, we aim to fulfill the learned part here on The Quarterdeck.
Founded by 59º North Sailing's professional skippers & mates, the QUARTERDECK's mission is to go deep into the art of SEAMANSHIP by sharing knowledge we've earned over tens of thousands of miles on the high seas, critically examining our own experiences & decision-making, & using the collective wisdom of the group of passionate sailors who join us in the QUARTERDECK community to become better sailors ourselves.
While the QUARTERDECK isn't free, don't forget - "If you're not paying for the product, you ARE the product!"
The QUARTERDECK is the latest passion project from Andy Schell & the team 59º North. We need your support as a founding member to help get this off the ground - the sooner you sign up, the more influence you'll have in laying the foundation of what the QUARTERDECK will become.
Welcome aboard & HOLD FAST!
The QUARTERDECK is designed to be an evolving community of like-minded sailors, based around the following fundamentals:
SEAMANSHIP SCENARIOS: The core of the Quarterdeck. August & Andy go back in time and re-live some of their most harrowing moments at sea. We ask members what they'd have done in the same situation, then after a period of debate, we debrief it, LIVE on video, to see what we learned, and if we did the right thing.
LIVE Sessions: Three-times per month we'll host LIVE, interactive video sessions exploring a variety of topics from sail trim to MOB procedures. Most LIVE sessions are prompted by members' own ideas, so let us know what you want to discuss! All LIVE sessions are recorded and archived on the Quarterdeck for members-only to watch on-demand.
THE SKIPPER'S BRIEFING: Monthly member newsletter highlighting the best of recent member posts & discussions from the QDECK, plus "Plundered Loot"- articles, podcasts & resources we find around the Internet that we share with you. Click here for a preview of our first issue.
Resource Library: with downloadable PDFs & customizable .docs of our SOPs, checklists, logbooks, celestial worksheets & more.
Exclusive Access: connect directly online & in-person with the QUARTERDECK ADMIRALTY - 59º North's skippers Andy & August, mates Mia & Emma and professional sailing crew, plus monthly 'Ask Me Anything' sessions with famous & accomplished sailors you'll know from the ON THE WIND Podcast interviews.
Seamanship Database: access to view AND contribute to our growing database of books, boats & ideas, with weekly posts distilling the knowledge gleaned from all sorts of different areas and how we can apply that knowledge to sailing & seamanship.
Dibs on Offshore Passages: QDECK members get first chance to view & sign-on to sail the offshore sailing passages BEFORE they're publicly published.
Online & In-Real-Life Community: bringing passionate, dedicated sailors like YOU together.
All in the pursuit of chasing horizons in safety & style.
We think long & hard about how we create best practices on our boats before ever casting off the lines, then we put those all that book knowledge to the test in real-world environments. We're out there living the sailor's life and we want to share what we've learned with you - and learn from you at the same time.
Sailing, particularly the offshore variety, is an endlessly challenging way of life, both an art and a science, tied to history like no other form of transportation. By joining the QUARTERDECK, you'll learn how we have distilled years of apprenticeship & book learning into practice, what we learned along the way, what went right and wrong, and how you can apply that to your own sailing goals.
But most importantly, you as a founding member, will be able to contribute your own skills and experiences, knowledge learned in books we may have not read, experience gained through situations we've never seen. We'll continually evolve this platform based on your feedback - what questions you ask, what stories you share, what advice you give.
In the square-rigger days, the 'quarterdeck' served as the place where a captain ran his ship. The quarterdeck was traditionally the place where the captain walked when on deck, usually on the windward side. The navigator also used it when taking his celestial sights when fixing the vessel's position. On most ships, it was customary that only officers could use the quarterdeck, others being allowed there only when assigned for specific duties - however, on the 59º North QUARTERDECK, everyone is welcome. it's the place where we run our virtual ship, and we want to share with you just how we do it.