2017 In Review
December 29, 2017
What a year! It's had its ups and downs, hasn't it? From award-winning boats to the Great American Eclipse, let's take a look at some highlights. One of the Skipper's favorite brands, Sea Ray, took home Boating Magazine's Boat of the Year award for the 2017 SLX 400. Check out this first-look video from the reviewers at boats.com. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=db-DKyGY2gg Wake boarding (and football) fans will remember USC quarterback Sam Darnold's perfect pass from a boat to a talented wake boarding buddy. Have you ever tried a trick like this? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bQDgtJXMkt8 The very active 2017 hurricane season gave rise to both the costliest and the strongest Atlantic hurricanes on record. Mid-August brought Harvey, which stalled over Texas and dropped over forty inches of rain. Once the storm had slackened, boaters came out in their own vessels to rescue their neighbors from the floodwaters. Harvey's final damage tally: $200 billion, with 91 deaths. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b2vmh_Bwa9A Hurricane Irma roared into the Caribbean a couple of weeks after Harvey, hammering the Leeward Islands with 185 mph winds. Irma's winds maintained that intensity for 37 hours, setting a new record as the strongest Atlantic hurricane. The storm devastated the Florida Keys before weakening and turning north to hit the mainland. [caption id="attachment_633" align="aligncenter" width="840"] Boot Key Harbor after Irma[/caption] In all, Irma killed 134 people and caused immense damage to property, especially boats. Happily, within a month of the storm, over 1,500 of the thousands of boats lost across Florida had been recovered. We hope that most of them will be repaired and back in use soon. Sometimes, we just need a good laugh. Wipeouts, launch failures, and other mishaps are hilarious (as long as no one gets hurt). Did you catch any fails of your own on video this year? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QQZN1OaXkHY Perhaps the brightest moment of 2017 was, ironically, one of its darkest. The total eclipse of August 21 gave Americans a rare opportunity to watch the moon's shadow cover the sun. Millions of people flocked to the path of totality, including the beaches of Oregon and South Carolina. [caption id="attachment_635" align="aligncenter" width="520"] Totality on the Isle of Palms, South Carolina. Photo: USA Today[/caption] It seemed like everyone who could took the time to enjoy the eclipse - even members of the US Armed Forces. [caption id="attachment_636" align="aligncenter" width="962"] Two sailors aboard the museum ship USS Yorktown in Mt. Pleasant, SC. Photo: Reuters[/caption] Happy New Year! What boat and beach memories will you carry with you into 2018? Tell us on Facebook, Google+, and Twitter.