Anchoring a sailboat

Posted by Grant Headifen on March 6, 2009 under Bareboat Charter, Skipper | Be the First to Comment

Learning to anchor a boat is an integral part of your learn to sail lessons. There are lots of considerations. Here we’ll cover one of those considerations – swing!

Care must be given to swing. As the wind changes during the night your boat will move with the wind and can put you into a precarious situation by being to close to the shore. Many times you’ll find an anchorage area with moorings. Remember that boats tied to moorings swing less than anchored boats. In this circumstance you may swing into other boats. Golden rule is “watch your swing”.

Swing path of a boat at anchor

Swing path of a boat at anchor

In addition, consideration must be given to the tide. As the tide “ebbs” out, you not only get closer to the bottom but your swing circle grows and the shore becomes closer. This diagram shows your swing path with deep water and correct scope.

Swing of the boat with current and wind changes

Swing of the boat with current and wind changes

This diagram shows that as the tide ebbed out your scope increased as well as your swing path bringing you dangerously close to the bottom and/or shore.

Swing of a boat after the tide goes out

Swing of a boat after the tide goes out

This online sailing instruction comes from Module 9 in the Skipper course. Take the course – you’ll learn a lot about sailing and get the skipper sailing certification.

Skipper Course

Skipper Course

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