I'd rather be sailing
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: The state of s/v/ Pelican
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It sounds like you're primarily talking about a port tack/starboard tack scenario. There are a few things we usually do. First, if you think you can make it in front of another boat, don't cut it too close (unless you're racing, in which case go for it). The wind can die and put you in a pretty bad place. Just be ready to quickly tack over if a worse case scenario shows itself. We'll usually do the following sequence:
1) Hold our course until we're fairly close and it's obvious whether we'll make it our not.
2) Head down and cross their stern. You won't lose speed but you'll have to adjust your sails accordingly -or-
3) Pinch (head up until just before your sails start luffing). This will slow you down substantially. Let them pass, then head back down and pick up speed.
In either case, "wag your bow" heavily in the direction you are planning on going so the other boat knows your intentions.
Keep in mind that, ultimately, it's your responsibility to make sure that
you don't collide. In other words, even if you have the right of way but could have avoided the collision, a collision could potentially be considered your responsibility.
s/v "Pelican" Passport 40 #076- Finished Cruising - for the moment -
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