Sailing in Heavy Weather – Tips to Keep Sailing

The weather plays a critical role in the safety of your sailing experience. Most sailors avoid the waters when there is a prediction of heavy weather. However, there are some who brave the waves only to be disappointed with their entire experience. Some beforehand tips will help with the sailing experience when the weather is not as favorable as you would want it to be. The safety factor is the most vital thing to consider when sailing in any weather and is even more critical when the weather is terrible.

  1. Safety First – The primary thing to consider when sailing is your safety. Bad weather or no, safety always comes first. When sailing in heavy weather, security becomes even more critical than on a regular sailing day. Every crew member who is going to be on board should be aware of all the protection that is required to make the sailing experience favorable.
  2. Sailing over 30-knots – The most challenging part of sailing is to sail in upwind. When cruising at anything above 30-knots, it attracts the winds especially when you have a J4 or double reefs in your primary. The best approach is to choose more jib area than the mainsail Doing so will give you the much-needed control over the boat. Also, avoid pinching as you will need speed to get sail through waves.
  3. Keeping the Bow Clear – Make use of the aft section to the maximum. Keep the crew in the aft section and anything else clear on the main board, and away from the bow area. The bow needs to be kept away from the waves, and the rudder should be broad. The body lines should be tapes to the jib sheets before going out into the sea. The bowlines should not shake free and should be adequately secured.
  4. Outboard Sheet – An outboard sheet becomes an essential part when you have to reach out. The sheet ensures that the boom does not wash out into the mainsail. Run with less mainsail and choose more headsail instead. The more you have control over the boat and sail, the more pleasant your experience would be. Avoid any broaching, reduce helm from the weather and choose to straight line sail.
  5. Best Tools for Airs – The Code Zero or even an A5 are the best tools when you are heading downwind in huge airs. The Code Zero helps in recovery and settlement after you have had a wipeout. From the windward side, attach a spare rope. The extra cord runs between the mainsail and the boom then onto the full spinnaker sheet. The spinnaker sheet then ties in no small You can pull the line to make the kite firm and steady on the mainsail. Doing so will make help in drawing the sail down.
  6. Crew Safety – There is never enough safety equipment that you can have on board. Run a second line of Jack line in the cabins as well. When the crew is crossing the cabin area in the top, the line comes in handy. All members on the boat will be able to stay as close to the center especially when the ship

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