Berthing can sometimes be challenging and difficult. It is a challenge a lot of boats encounter on a regular basis. One that a lot of boat owners struggle with, especially new boat owners. You might be good at sailing, but chances are you might not be able to handle a boat well when it comes to marina berthing. When it comes to boat berths, you need the right knowledge and strategy to berth your boat properly.
In this article, you will learn some berthing tips that will help you berth your boat like a professional. Listed below are some of the tips you need to see you through this process:
1.Know Where You Are Headed
When visiting a marina you are not familiar with for the first time, the numbering system of the berths and the pontoons layout, are usually unclear. It is worth looking in advance to see if the information is made available in charts of the area, whether in electronic or paper form. With this information, if you are directed to a specific direction, you will be able to figure out where you are going without encountering unexpected challenging issues.
2. Be Free To Ask For Different Berths
If you are not sure you will be able to maneuver your boat into the berth allocated to you, feel free to ask for alternative berths. When there is enough space, a lot of marina operators are understanding about this.
3. Do Not Be Embarrassed By Several Big Fenders
When things do not go as planned, the first line of defense between the dock or another boat and your boat are fenders. Fenders will not directly enhance your boat handling, but sometimes they can undoubtedly reduce stress. Knowing that there are fenders to protect you when necessary gives you the ability to focus on maneuvering your boat, instead of thinking and perturbing about the worst case scenario.
4.Have A Bail-Out Option
It is crucial that you identify the level at which you are fully unswerving to a maneuver in advance. If things don’t go according to plan, this will help you to know when to bail out. It also gives you the opportunity to take a look at potentially difficult berths, while having a safe escape route. Marina berthing in tough conditions can even be challenging to the most experienced.
5. Consider The Tide
In marina berths, the tidal stream is likely to be the largest influence on maneuvering. Before you enter into a narrowed space, it is crucial that you know the direction in which it’s flowing. Entering marina berths with a flowing stream is only for boat handling experts, and it also requires a parallel strategy at a speed that is fast enough to keep steerage away.
The easiest solution to this is to time your arrival to coincide with when the stream is helpful, or you can ask for a temporary berth until the stream changes direction or slackens.
6. Consider the Direction of the Wind
After the tide, the next most crucial factors that affect the handling of a boat is the wind, and it will mostly be in play for marinas that are in non-tidal areas. When maneuvering in a limited space, and when moving at a low pace, it is crucial to remember that guests have an excessively large effect. Also, guests are mostly associated with a shift in the direction of the wind. Knowing the direction of the wind will help you maneuver your boat very well.