Running Aground 101 - Sail Magazine

Running Aground 101

Author:
Publish date:
Backing up to a nice grounding spot with the twin rudders already retracted. Photos by Adam Cort

Backing up to a nice grounding spot with the twin rudders already retracted. Photos by Adam Cort

Oddly enough, grounding a 46-footer on a beach ain’t that tough. The only question is whether you prefer to go in bow or stern first.

Aboard the Seaward 46RK, backing up is made especially easy by that fact that the boat is equipped with twin diesels, which can be “tractored,” as on a catamaran. This allows you to pull up the two rudders well in advance so you don’t have to worry about them suffering a hard grounding.

Raising the keel is a push-button operation

Raising the keel is a push-button operation

The nice thing about going in stern-first is that it makes stepping ashore that much easier. Basically you just raise the retractable keel and then back up as far as you can go, orienting the boat so it’s perpendicular to the shore. When you can’t go any farther, simply step off the stern and set a small anchor to ensure you stay put.

The one variable that can make things a bit complicated is a cross-current, since ending up broadside to the shore will make it hard to get off again. In this case it often makes sense to go in bow first, since you will have better control of your angle. You can also drop the engines in reverse and back away quickly if things start going haywire. Have a stern anchor ready to set on the up-current side and as soon as the bow hits the sand have someone set it ashore to keep the stern stationary.

Dropping the hook; no question whether you’re well set here!

Dropping the hook; no question whether you’re well set here!

If the current isn’t too bad, you can also try backing down on a bow anchor, similar to backing into the dock in a Med-moor situation. As soon as you ground out, walk out a stern anchor to keep your back end stable, and between it and the bow anchor you should be all set.

Read Sailing in the Shallows of Florida here

For Some Common Centerboard and Daggerboard Designs for Sailboats, click here

November 2015

Related

SouthernOcean

The 50th Anniversary of the Golden Globe

Here we go! The 50th anniversary of the Golden Globe, the first singlehanded nonstop round-the-world race, is upon us. On July 1 one tribute event, the Golden Globe Race 2018, will start out of Les Sables d’Olonne, France, with a fleet of 19 amateur skippers setting out in ...read more

180621-X01-Landing-Page

Volvo Ocean Race Cliffhanger

After racing over 44,000 miles round the world and battling their way past the world’s great capes, including the Cape of Good Hope and Cape Horn, it’s all come down to the final 700-mile leg from Gothenburg, Sweden, to the Hague. Brunel, Mapfre, Dongfeng: going into the ...read more

Stearns Photo

Racing the Solo Mac for a Cause

There are plenty of reasons to do a Chicago-Mac race, and Rich Stearns, who has done literally dozens of ‘em should know. This year, though, he’s doing the Solo-Mac for an especially important reason: to help those with prostate cancer.“Two years ago, I was diagnosed with ...read more

TOTW_PromoSite

SAIL's Tip of the Week

Presented by Vetus-Maxwell.Got a tip? Send it to sailmail@sailmagazine.comRafting dangerOne unseen danger when sailing yachts lie alongside one another for a convivial night is that if they happen roll to a wash or begin to move in an unexpected sea, the spreaders can clash ...read more

180615-01 Lead

A Dramatic Comeback in the Volvo

After winning three of the last four legs in the Volvo Ocean Race (and coming in second in the fourth), Dutch-flagged Brunel is now tied for first overall with Spanish-flagged Mapfre and Chinese-flagged Dongfeng following the completion of Leg 10 from Cardiff, Wales, to ...read more

MFS-5-2018-Propan-SP02

Tohatsu LPG-powered 5hp Propane Motor

Gassing it UpTired of ethanol-induced fuel issues? Say goodbye to gasoline. Japanese outboard maker Tohatsu has introduced an LPG-powered 5hp kicker that hooks up to a propane tank for hours of stress-free running. Available in short-, long- or ultra-long-shaft versions, the ...read more