PDB Tested: The Boater's Pocket Reference

Published online: Feb 27, 2013 PDB Tested
Viewed 336 time(s)

I must be on someone's short mailing list for DVD's, videos and boating books because I've got quite a collection on my shelf. However, The Boater's Pocket Reference is by far the best resource book I've ever come across for boaters. How author Thomas McEwen packs so much information into a three by five-inch book is beyond me.

Knowledge is power and I felt like I had the boating world in my hands when I first picked up this wallet-sized book that has over 750 pages of illustrations, charts and more information than should legally be able to fit in the palm of my hand.

When it comes to boating, even the most seasoned skippers don't have all the answers. Basically if you don't have questions then you're not trying hard enough. How do you tie a Highwayman's Hitch? What sound signals do you need to know when your visibility is restricted? What items should be in your basic electrical toolkit?  Still think you know all the answers? I know I don't and that's why this book has become a regular fixture on my desk and goes with me on my boat. McEwen took his years of experience as an avid boater and member of the Boulder Valley Power and Sail Squadron in Colorado to research and answer the questions he had asked himself. In preparation of this book, McEwen spent years reading books and attending seminars and classes about boating.

At the risk of sounding like an infomercial, what do you think a valuable book like this should cost? Anchor Cove Publishing set the price at $14.95, which I feel is more than reasonable. For me the pre-departure checklist and systems check is worth $15 alone because I like having this information readily available when I need it.

I ranked this book very high because I believe you get a lot of value with this product. Check it out for yourself and I think you'll agree with my evaluation.


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