Whether you are sailing in Vancouver or anywhere in the world for that matter, it is important to remember a few fundamental things to keep yourself and your crew as safe as possible so you can relax and enjoy the wonderful sailing area we have here on Vancouver island.
Be honest about your skill level
In order to keep sailing a fun and safe activity there are some rules that all sailors worldwide are expected to follow. Sailing Vancouver is no different to the rest of the world. Firstly you need to be honest about your skill level – don’t go beyond the skills that you know as you are not only putting yourself at risk, but also the crew on your yacht too. There are so many places where you can gain additional skills and experience, not least at our Nanaimo sailing school, but in many many other sailing schools throughout the world. Nothing beats experience either, so it’s worth trying to get out on the water to get lots of practise in as rarely are two situations exactly the same on the water! Don’t fear though if you have had some formal training then as long as you stick within your limits you can enjoy some amazing sailing.
Always, always check the weather!
Your ability to sail is only going to work when you have wind in your sails! Alway check the forecast before you set off, as it may be nice and calm before you set off but that could all change quickly. Also always determine what the wind speed and wind direction are before setting out, so that you know what to expect whilst you’re out on the water. Check the current weather in Vancouver, BC
Check your boat and gear over
Next thing to keep yourself and your crew as safe as possible when you are sailing in Vancouver, is to always inspect your boat, tools and gear. You will want to ensure that everything is in good working order and a good condition. All charter yachts by law will carry safety equipment onboard, and make sure that all the life jackets are in good order and there is one for every crew member. Check over all the safety equipment such as flares, paddles, marine radios etc..It is also a good idea to make sure that everyone knows how to make a distress call if you were unlikely to need immediate assistance – you don’t want to work out how to call for help when you find yourself in trouble, much better that everyone knows the safety procedures before you set off.
Plan out your itinerary.
It’s a good idea also to have a vague plan of the itinerary that you are likely to be following on your yacht charter. It can be reassuring to know that the base or marina office know where and when you plan to be going on your adventure as once you are off and out of sight your only contact will be by radio or phone.
If you are off sailing your own yacht and are not with a charter company sailing in Vancouver, then think about leaving your plan with someone onshore – normally this would include a description and name of your boat, and everyone who is onboard, and where you plan to be sailing to and when you expect to return.
When sailing in Vancouver, you can sail assured in the knowledge that you are happy with the skill level, the wind and your itinerary planned, and you have peace of mind knowing that you and the crew all know the emergency procedures.
Stay alert, maintain a safe speed and enjoy the beautiful sailing area now within your grasp.
Enjoy safe sailing in Vancouver.