Boat Handling

Let the Wind Do the Work

by Peter Nielsen, Posted January 20, 2014
The first time I tried to pick up a mooring singlehanded in a stiff breeze, I approached from dead downwind in the usual manner and stopped the boat with the pickup buoy right where I wanted it.

Walking The Prop

by Tor Pinney, Posted December 10, 2013
Prop walk, the tendency of a turning propeller to push a boat’s stern sideways, can be a real nuisance when maneuvering under power. Or it can be your biggest ally. The trick is to understand it, anticipate it, and make it work for you.
Setting a stern anchor is not for the faint of heart and can be a real pain. My friend Maurice Roper belongs to a club that always anchors in the same cove where anchors fore and aft are mandatory.
Getting set for the first sail of the season? Here's a quick guide to getting the best out of your furling headsail.

Ring Around the Headstay

by Charles J. Doane, Posted February 28, 2013
The first bareboat I ever hired in the Virgin Islands, many moons ago, was from a small hole-in-the-wall charter outfit with a rather motley fleet of vessels.
The wind was too light to sail, so we started out motoring. Soon, however, my buddy’s motor started heating up. The access hatch was buried under camping gear, and he didn’t want to investigate right then, so he shut his engine down, and I took his boat in tow.

The Art of Motorsailing

by Charles J. Doane, Posted February 4, 2013
It never fails to amaze me how many jerry jugs of fuel some bluewater sailors are willing to carry on deck. Once I spotted a boat at the fuel dock in St. Georges with 16 jugs open on the quay waiting to be filled...

Cruising Tips: Heaving-To

by Andy Schell, Posted January 21, 2013
During the 2011 edition of the Caribbean 1500 cruising rally, nine yachts of the fleet of 62 broke off after crossing the Gulf Stream and sailed toward Green Turtle Cay in the Abacos. 

Parbuckling Dock Lines

by Tom Cunliffe, Posted January 14, 2013
If ever you find yourself with a heavy boat tied to a dock or wall, blowing off so that no amount of heaving will bring her in, you can always use the simple principle of parbuckling on your docklines.
“We’ll only be out for an hour,” he promised, and I decided to believe him. The wind out on Lake Ontario was light, the seas were calm, and despite there being some dark clouds in the distance, it looked like a great afternoon for a sail.
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