Beginner's Guide to Boating
Learn from the Experts
It is advisable to connect with professional sailors to provide knowledge and experience. New boaters can learn through the following ways:
- Joining a marine organization or boat club
- Registering and going through sailing school
- Providing voluntary services as a crew member of a large boat
- Hiring a personal guide for training
Before sailing, a boater must be aware of the safety measures, equipment to use, wind awareness, and knot-tying. Examples of terminologies to learn used in the boating world include bow, stern, underway, forward, heel, and port.
Getting a License
When seeking advice, getting a boating license is something every professional, guide, or trainer will say. It is compulsory for any water vessel operating in a public space and the boat’s registration as well. And just like drivers register and pay for a parking space, boaters can register separately for docking space.
Going for long sails without boating gear is close to being suicidal. The following is some of the essential gear required:
- GPS - it helps understand the water traffic and anticipate encounters
- Depth sounder - helps avoid shallow, dangerous waters.
- Marine radio
- Electronic compass
- Safety equipment - fire extinguisher, life vests, and distress flares
Technology has improved navigation, and there are plenty of helpful instruments to try out.
A float plan is a written document that acts as a safety measure. It is about three pages long detailed with the following information:
- Type of boat in use
- Number of people on the boat
- Kind of safety gear carried
This document is usually left with the last person onshore to see a boater leave. It can also have a to-do list in case concerns of safety start arising.
Gaining sailing experience can take some time, but it is all worth it. It is fun, provides a fantastic atmosphere, and there is the probability of seeing marine creatures such as a dolphin, or even a whale, depending on the type of sailor you are.
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