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Heading up the mast is always a fun job for us, especially when we have to do it a couple of times in a row as we did yesterday. The purpose of the climb was to replace the bulb in our spreader light, not a high-priority item on our boat but something that we still wanted to have functioning again. Because we weren’t in a rush to get it done, we were able to wait for a calm day and thankfully, the weather cooperated nicely yesterday morning.

Prior to heading up the mast I first checked the bulb to make sure that it functioned*. The last thing I wanted to do was go all the way up there and install a bulb which might turn out to not be working (even though it was brand new you never know). As it turned out, when I made it back down after replacing the bulb, the deck light still appeared to us that it wasn’t working. So, back up I went again to check all the connections.

In addition to the stress of working up that high, I find the hardest part is how much I need to concentrate to make sure that I don’t drop anything. While tools can be attached by tethers, and they were, the bulb certainly couldn’t. So, with much care the connections were checked and re-checked. Unfortunately, when power was applied, this time while I was still up there, it still seemed not to work. Typical. The problem must be somewhere else, right?

Later in the evening, after the sun had set, we would come to find when we checked it one more time that the light did in fact work. The second trip up the mast and all that extra troubleshooting was all for nothing. The light just couldn’t be seen in the bright sunshine. I’ll remember that for next time!

Trying hard to not drop anything.

Rebecca carefully belaying me on the winch.

Our PDQ and Lagoon neighbors.

Roger’s Beach Bar, before the afternoon crowd.
We would later in the day gather there for a fun guitar jam session.

*I fabricated a 12 volt tester that has a cigarette-lighter plug on one end and a couple of alligator clips on the other end. I can now easily apply 12 volt power to items that I want to check without hard wiring them into a circuit.


  1. Rebecca beat you aging in the hash race? Have you always used a chair to climb the mast or have you tried other devices? Rececca, I will pay you to leave him up there next time for the night!!!! lol

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