SailNet Community banner

1 - 4 of 4 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,000 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
First post :)

I raced regularily with some friends back in highschool, over the span of three years we raced in several regattas around British Columbia, and also did a Swiftsure. This has given me some experience as deck crew and spinnaker handling, sail changes, rigging, etc... I don't have much experience at the helm. All of our racing and cruising took place on a Viking 33, and I've also been out on a 10ish foot Fireball.

I want to be able to make trips around British Columbia, visit some of the islands. Currently saving for my first boat, hoping to get one in 2010.

How difficult is it to learn to dock a 27-32 foot sailboat? Assuming someone was a fast learner under good conditions and going out on the boat most weekends and willing to take lessons, how long would it take to be able to comfortably navigate along the coast of the province? I'm reading up on navigation and maintenance, but it's difficult to estimate if “learning the basics” will take 2 months or 2 years!

What the "basics" are is open to interpretation, so thanks for any help answering my question.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,146 Posts
First post :)

I raced regularily with some friends back in highschool, over the span of three years we raced in several regattas around British Columbia, and also did a Swiftsure. This has given me some experience as deck crew and spinnaker handling, sail changes, rigging, etc... I don't have much experience at the helm. All of our racing and cruising took place on a Viking 33, and I've also been out on a 10ish foot Fireball.

I want to be able to make trips around British Columbia, visit some of the islands. Currently saving for my first boat, hoping to get one in 2010.

How difficult is it to learn to dock a 27-32 foot sailboat? Assuming someone was a fast learner under good conditions and going out on the boat most weekends and willing to take lessons, how long would it take to be able to comfortably navigate along the coast of the province? I'm reading up on navigation and maintenance, but it's difficult to estimate if “learning the basics” will take 2 months or 2 years!

What the "basics" are is open to interpretation, so thanks for any help answering my question.
Welcome to Sailnet...

27-32 if not lots of freeboard - very easy - just go as slow as you can and take the panic out of the situation. Time for power when need (but never too much over the conditions), have yourself in a position to see what you are doing.. and develop a routine..and not be afraid to back out if you have second thoughts because when you do - thats when you make mistakes...

My general rule of thumb:

Have the spring lines so you can grab them as you walk off the boat. They are more than enough to manage it even when being blown.

Have a boathook at the ready - it will happen you concentrate more on one line instead of the big picture. A Boat hook allows you to grab a stanchion and pull the part of the part getting away. Doubles for grabbing the fwd or aft lines while on the pier.

Always make sure you back down and place in neutral less you want to fight a boat with power of its own. Probably the biggest mistake that causes issues is that neutral aspect - if you have at least one other on board - soon as you jump off - have them kill the engine...

Practice..

Not that hard actually - but have a practiced docking scenario and do not be afraid to call on the VHF to the marina you are at and request hands on the pier to assist...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Docking

A lot will depend on where and how you must dock and whether or not you are single handed.
As long as you bring her in slowly and safely without hitting the dock or other boats, you'll be fine.Our experience has been that there is always someone at the dock and nine times out of ten they have been waiting to help or handle the lines for us.
If you're self conscious about docking remember everyone started out with no experience.
Don't be afraid to get it wrong a few times before you get the hang of docking.
Don't be afraid to ask for help or even advice.

Assuming you are still in BC, CYA has a good course on Navigation that gets into tides and currents. Theses courses may even carry weight with some insurance companies.

S/V Wings
 
1 - 4 of 4 Posts
Top