Practical Boat Owner

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How to use a cruising chute

David Harding

  • David Harding
  • December 1, 2023

For non-racing sailors, a cruising chute is often the downwind sail of choice: it’s nothing to be afraid of, but how do you use it to best advantage? David Harding offers some guidance

A crew dropping a cruising chute on a yacht

For our testing we headed out on a Saare 41 with a crew of highly experienced offshore racing sailors. Credit: David Harding Credit: David Harding

Last summer I was doing a photo shoot with a cruising couple aboard a 32-footer.

Upwind sailing produced the best angles for the shots, so we covered a fair distance to the west.

As we then faced the prospect of a slow and potentially rather tedious run home, I asked whether any downwind sails were lurking in the cockpit locker.

They had a cruising chute, I was told – but it had only been up once, with the help of a more experienced friend.

None of them had been convinced that it was the right size for the boat and, lacking confidence in how to use it, the owners had left it in its bag ever since.

As we eased the sheets and pointed the bow eastwards, I could hear the cruising chute crying out from the bottom of the locker.

A yacht with a cruising chute being lowered

How confident are you in setting, handling and dousing a cruising chute? Credit: David Harding

Here we were, about seven miles directly upwind or our destination on an absolutely glorious summer’s day with a flat sea and a steady 12 knots of wind.

We just had to take pity on the poor sail, so we dragged it on deck, rigged it up and hoisted it.

It worked perfectly, bringing the boat to life, getting us home faster and making life a lot more fun into the bargain.

We experimented with hardening up and bearing away to cover all the angles, and threw in a few gybes to show how easy they could be.

We were three on board, but everything could have been managed easily with two – especially given the engagement of the autopilot .

I headed for home that evening with the owners promising to make more use of the chute in the future.

It’s hard not to wonder how many other cruising chutes are confined to lives of darkness in the depths of a locker.

The biggest problem with sails like this is that they can be used with a much more limited range of wind angles than spinnakers that are projected from a pole or a bowsprit .

Nonetheless, confidence in setting, handling and, importantly, dousing has a major part to play, so that’s what we’ll be looking at in this feature.

For our testing we headed out on a Saare 41 with a crew of offshore racing sailors who, between them, had covered hundreds of thousands of miles and amassed an impressive collection of silverware at a pretty high level.

By the time we had repeated each hoist, set, gybe and douse about three times for the filming and photographs we had done more in three hours than most cruising sailors would in a month – and it was also blowing over 20 knots much of the time – so as it turned out it was no bad thing to have been slightly over-crewed.

Hoisting the cruising chute: no handling aids

Relatively few cruising chutes are used with no handling aids – snuffers, furlers and the like – but how easy is it?

A cruising chute being hoisted on a yacht

Credit: David Harding

1. The helm bears away to allow the chute to be hoisted in the lee of the mainsail. The mast crew is jumping the halyard, as racing sailors do, but it’s being tailed from the cockpit. Nobody would have to be on deck for the hoist.

A yacht with blue and white sails

2. Sailing the boat at the correct angle is what matters during the hoist.The cruising chute is nearly up but still hanging limply in the mainsail’s lee.

A cruising chite being hoisted on a boat

3. Now it’s fully hoisted and the cockpit crew can start to tension the sheet.

A yacht sailing with blue and white sails

4. The helm brings the boat up a few degrees towards the wind.No longer blanketed by the mainsail, the chute fills. That’s it!

Dousing the cruising chute: no handling aids

This is the bit that tends to worry people – so what’s it really like with no snuffer or furling system?

1. As when hoisting, the first job is to steer the boat deep downwind so the chute is in the lee of the mainsail.

A yacht sailing under a blue sky

2. Now it’s totally blanketed.The halyard is being lowered from the cockpit and the sheet is used to pull the chute inboard under the boom. No one is on the foredeck.

3. There’s a lot of spinnaker nylon to bundle down the hatch, but no hurry as long as the halyard is lowered at the right pace.

A crew of men on a boat

4. Nearly all safely below decks and ready to be packed back in the bag ready for the next hoist.

Hoisting the cruising chute: snuffer

Using a snuffer is still the most popular way to handle a cruising chute, especially on smaller boats

A yacht sailing under a blue sky

1. A snuffer has to be operated from the foredeck. The chute in its snuffer is hoisted in the mainsail’s lee, then the mast crew uses the snuffer’s internal halyard to haul it up over the chute.

A cruising chute being hoisted on a boat

2. Again, the helm points up a few degrees. The idea with a snuffer is that the wind starts filling the chute as soon as the crew is ready, helping slide the snuffer up and over the sail.

A yacht sailing with two sails under a blue sky

3. With the wind now doing the work, the mast crew simply has to tail the uphaul line.

A cruising chute filling in the wind on a boat

4. Chute filling, the helm bears away again and the chute is trimmed to the course.

Hoisting the cruising chute: top-down furler

Various types of furler for downwind sails have been developed in recent years and are becoming increasingly popular on larger boats.

The top-down variety is one that lends itself to use with cruising chutes.

A boat sailing at sea

1. The furled sail is hoisted in a thin sausage. On deck, one of the crew uses the continuous furling line (it can be led aft) to release the locking mechanism on the furler that stops the sail flying open if the sheet is pulled prematurely.

A sail being unfurled on a yacht

2. In the cockpit, a member of the crew tensions the sheet to start unfurling the sail. Note how it opens from the middle first.

A cruising chute being hoisted on a yacht

3. Once started, it unfurls quickly. The top is last.

A cruising chute on a yacht filling in the wind

4. A few seconds later, it’s all unrolled and filling nicely.

Dousing the chute: snuffer

In theory, snuffing is easy – but here we had over 20 knots of wind…

A boat with a white hull and a blue and white cruising chute up sailing at sea

1. Again, the first job is to bear away and collapse the chute in the lee of the mainsail. A crewman is ready by the mast.

A sail being taken down on a boat

2. With the chute collapsed, the mast crew starts pulling the snuffer down over the chute.

A cruising chute being taken down with a snuffer on a boat

3. With a blanketed chute and a well-designed snuffer, this shouldn’t be hard work but it might take a while.

A cruising chute being taken down wiht a snuffer on a yacht

4. The halyard can now be lowered to bring the snuffed chute back down on deck.

Dousing: top-down furler

This should be the quickest and easiest way with a sail of this size in this amount of breeze…

A boat sailing with a cruising chute

1. It’s the usual start: bear away and collapse the sail. Don’t make life hard for yourself. A member of crew is on deck starting to furl.

A yacht sailing at sea

2. This is 15 seconds later. The head of the sail is wrapped around the torsion rope first – hence the “top-down” designation.

3. All furled. It’s a tight sausage that can, if necessary, be left hoisted on upwind legs, unlike a chute in a snuffer.

With the crew we had on board, it proved quicker and more straightforward to hoist and douse the chute without handling aids.

This is how racing crews handle spinnakers all the time.

You don’t need lots of hands for this – a cruising couple can manage perfectly well, and life can be easier still with the help of an autopilot.

Continues below…

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The biggest chore might be repacking a chute that, after being bundled down the hatch, will be occupying most of the saloon!

Some racers are of the opinion that, on cruising boats over 12m (40ft) or so, a top-down furler is the way to go.

A snuffer can be more of a challenge when you have to stand on a heaving foredeck.

Whichever method you use, one critical factor is to have a helmsman (or an autopilot) capable of steering the boat at the right angle to keep the chute in the lee of the mainsail for hoisting and dropping.

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Tri-Radial Cruising Chute

£ 390.60 – £ 5,257.98

25 sizes to fit dayboats to superyachts, in a choice of colours

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E-Sails Tri-Radial Cruising Chutes are a super easy-to-use design, their flying shape is optimised for a broad range of reaching angles, so they will greatly enhance your downwind sailing pleasure and boat speed. They can be hoisted from a Launch Bag like a spinnaker – or they can be used with a Snuffer (both items are available separately, and through this site).

E-Sails Tri-Radial Cruising Chutes are available in a range of standard sizes that will suit many yacht and rig sizes. They are available as either Single or Two colour options, choose colour preference when ordering.

Colours available for either the Main body colour or the Stripe are: Red, White, Blue, Grey and Yellow.

They are Tri-Radial in Layout, meaning they have horizontal panels across the centre and the corner panels all Radiate inwards, so that the sheet loads are running directly along the fibres, unlike the more basic Spinnaker layouts, such as Cross-Cut and Radial Head designs. (When the fibres aren’t loaded along their threads, permanent fabric shape distortion can occur).

Material is 1.5oz Ripstop Nylon – which is an ideal weight for most cruising yachts and for most wind conditions.

The Sails feature Leech and Foot tapes and Pressed Rings on Tack, Clew and Head.

The sail is supplied in a Nylon Bag, and they are suitable for use with Snuffers.

CHOOSING THE SIZE:

We recommend that you choose a Cruising Chute with a Luff Length that is equal (or about 98%) of your measured (SFL) distance. i.e. From your Spinnaker Halyard’s maximum Hoist position, down to the Cruising Chute’s Tack attachment point (ordinarily this will be about the same as your yacht’s quoted Forestay Length (FL). If you plan to use a Snuffer or a Furler, then deduct another 0.5m from SFL to allow room.

MEASURING THE SFL: This distance can be measured most easily with a surveyor’s tape measure hoisted on the Spinnaker Halyard. Alternatively, you can hoist a stretchless rope, mark the length carefully and measure that. The Cruising Chute will have a curved Luff profile and so there will be a room in the Luff to tension it.

CALCULATING THE SFL: The (SFL) is the Hypotenuse of yacht’s given I & J measurement (see diagram below)

Hypotenuse = The square root of I squared + J squared

e.g. therefore with I – 8.9m, J – 2.3m

Hyp(SFL) = the square root of (8.9 x 8.9) + (2.3 x 2.3)

Hyp(SFL) = the square root of (79.21) + (5.29)

Hyp(SFL) = the square root of (84.5)

Hyp(SFL) = 9.19m

So, choose a SAIL LUFF of approx. 9.0m (or 8.5m with a Snuffer).

(For peace of mind, the Luff Length will nearly always be very close to the I dimension).

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Hoist the tape measure up using the genoa halyard attached to the head swivel and the tape attached to the sails normal attachment point (make sure to add a length of light line so you can get it back down again without relying on the tape alone!). Hoist all the way to the top – effectively the absolute maximum hoist distance – and measure to the tack attachment shackle, and make note of this dimension.

For the sail luff length, make a 2% deduction – so if the max hoist is 10000mm 2% = 200mm so sail length will be 9800mm. This deduction allows for the head and tack webbings and potential stretch so it puts the head swivel in the optimum spot for furling. On furling sails (mains and genoas) we fit soft webbing loops at the head and tack, these are around 50-60mm long each.

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A big improvement in light weather performance for the cruising sailor compatible with a number of easy handling options .

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Design your own colour scheme using our MAGIC SAILS PALETTE – Whatever you create, we can make.

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Navigating the Seas: A Guide to Sailing, Chutes and Techniques

Navigating the Seas: A Guide to Sailing, Chutes and Techniques

  • Navigating the Seas: A Comprehensive Guide to Sailing, Cruising Chutes, and Advanced Techniques

Sailing, a harmonious dance between wind and water, offers a world of adventure for enthusiasts. At the heart of this maritime artistry lies the cruising chute—a sail that propels sailors into the realm of downwind delights. In this guide, we'll navigate through the intricacies of sailing, uncovering the magic of cruising chutes, exploring genoa sails, and mastering advanced techniques that elevate your sailing prowess.

Sailing Downwind Basics

Understanding the fundamentals of downwind sailing is the first step to unlocking the full potential of your vessel. As the wind pushes your boat from behind, the cruising chute takes center stage, capturing the breeze and transforming it into forward momentum. This section will delve into the nuances of downwind sailing, providing insights to make your sailing experience smooth and exhilarating.

The Role of Genoa Sails

Genoa sails, larger cousins to jibs, play a pivotal role in maximizing sail area and power. We embark on a journey to explore these expansive sails, understanding how they contribute to the overall efficiency of your boat, especially when sailing close to the wind.

Navigating Upwind

Upwind sailing, a different challenge altogether, demands a nuanced understanding of wind angles and sail adjustments. We demystify the intricacies of sailing against the wind , offering insights that empower sailors to navigate diverse wind conditions confidently.

Goose Wing Sailing Technique

Mastering the goose wing sailing technique adds finesse to your sailing repertoire. By setting sails on opposite sides of the boat, mimicking the outstretched wings of a goose, sailors achieve optimal sail exposure to the wind. This section provides practical tips for mastering this elegant and effective technique.

Managing Genoa Roll

Rolling the genoa effectively is an essential skill for any sailor. We offer valuable tips and techniques to ensure smooth transitions between different sailing conditions, enhancing your control and comfort on the water.

The Yacht Pole

Unveiling the yacht pole—a versatile component positioned in the middle of a sailboat. We explore its various functions, from supporting sails like the cruising chute to providing stability and aiding in sail management during various sailing conditions.

Wind Chutes on Sailboats

Decoding the mystery of wind chutes, also known as cruising chutes, adds flair to your sailing adventures. This section explores their design and purpose, providing insights into how these specialized sails can enhance your overall sailing experience.

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Sailing Pole Nomenclature

What is the pole on a sailboat called? This section clarifies the nomenclature associated with sailing poles, ensuring sailors are well-versed in the terminology used in the maritime world.

The Allure of the Other Side

"The flies are always tastier on the other side." In the context of sailing, this metaphor holds a profound truth. We delve into the psychological aspects of exploring new horizons in sailing, inviting sailors to embrace the allure of the unknown.

Spinnaker vs. Gennaker

Is there a difference between a spinnaker and a gennaker ? This section provides a comprehensive comparison, helping sailors choose the right sail for their specific needs and conditions.

Sailing with Jib Only

Sailing with only a jib has its own set of advantages and challenges. We discuss the pros and cons of this technique, empowering sailors to make informed decisions based on their sailing goals and preferences.

One Sheet Sailboat Technique

Simplifying sailing with one sheet—this technique streamlines sail control, making it more accessible for beginners. We provide insights into how this approach can enhance your sailing experience, especially for those new to the art of sailing.

The Versatility of Multi-Purpose Sails

Explore the benefits and considerations of multi-purpose sails that adapt to various wind conditions. This section highlights the versatility of these sails, offering a practical guide for sailors seeking flexibility in their sailing endeavors.

Mastering Cruising Chutes

How do you effectively use a cruising chute? This section provides a step-by-step guide, ensuring that sailors can harness the full potential of this specialized sail, adding grace and speed to their downwind adventures.

Read our top notch articles on topics such as sailing, sailing tips and destinations in our  Magazine.

Furling Cruising Chutes

Furling cruising chutes offer convenience and ease of use. We explore the benefits of this technology and considerations for sailors looking to invest in this practical sailing accessory, making downwind sailing more accessible.

Direct Sailing Techniques

Efficient and direct routes are essential for reaching your destination promptly. This section provides insights into direct sailing techniques, optimizing your routes for maximum efficiency and enjoyment.

Navigating Dead Goose Cradle

Understanding the term "dead goose cradle" is crucial for sailors navigating specific wind conditions. We demystify this concept, providing clarity on its implications for your sailing experience and how to navigate it effectively.

Dead Downwind Sailing

Sailing dead downwind presents unique challenges and opportunities. This section discusses the techniques and considerations for navigating this specific point of sail, enhancing your skills and confidence on the water.

Center of Effort in Sailing

Controlling the center of effort is fundamental for sail balance. We explore the importance of this concept and how sailors can effectively manage the center of effort for optimal performance, especially in varying wind conditions.

Catch the Wind in Your Sails

Maximizing sail efficiency involves understanding how to catch the wind effectively. This section provides tips and techniques for ensuring your sails capture the maximum wind energy, optimizing your sailing experience.

Second Wind Sails

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Spinnaker Chute Insights

Handling the spinnaker chute requires skill and precision. This section offers valuable insights and tips for effectively managing the spinnaker chute, enhancing your overall sailing experience and confidence in handling this specialized sail.

In the vast sea of sailing knowledge, mastering the intricacies of sails and sailing techniques is an ongoing journey. Whether you're a novice or an experienced sailor, these insights into cruising chutes, genoa sails, and various sailing techniques aim to enrich your understanding and elevate your time on the water.

So what are you waiting for? Take a look at our  range of charter boats  and head to some of our favourite 

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What is a Cruising Chute?

10 October 2017

A cruising chute is primarily the same as a gennaker or asymmetric spinnaker. However, cruising chutes tend to be a little easier to handle than a racing asymmetric sail and in many cases they are more modest in size and are cut a little more conservatively.

Like gennakers and Asymmetric kites, cruising chutes are triangular, made of lightweight material and, as the name suggests, they are not cut symmetrically, meaning that they have a permanent luff, leach, tack and clew.

Many cruising chutes are fitted with a ‘snuffer’ which is a large lightweight nylon sock that is pulled up with a dedicated line once the chute has been hoisted. When you want to drop the chute you simply turn onto a deep broad reach, hoist or unfurl your headsail and then depower the cruising chute’s working sheet. Then you pull on the ‘snuffer line’ which pulls the snuffer down and over the sail, thus depowering it and collecting it ready for the ease of the halyard. Make sure you don’t lose the snuffer line after the hoist!

Cruising chutes can usually be flown either off a tack line run along the deck to the bow and then run through a block or sometimes they may be flown off a tack line at the end of a bowsprit.

Related article:

  • What is a Spinnaker?
  • What is the difference between a symmetric and asymmetric spinnaker?

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Cruising Chutes

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Home » Shop » Sails » Cruising Chute

Cruising Chute

Cruising Chute

A 1.5 oz cruising chute, perfect for fast efficient downwind sailing especially when cruising

Please see images for the panel layouts and colours to select from.

To choose your sail please measure the straight line from the Halyard down to your preferred Tack position ( instructions )

SEE DESCRIPTION BELOW FOR INSTRUCTIONS

£ 680.40 – £ 3,166.80

Description

Additional information, measurement.

HYDE SAILS 1.5 oz Cruising Chutes are a range of standard size Asymmetric’s with 8 Panel layout options which are available in red, white and blue only.

The sails are manufactured from Challenge nylon Fibermax 64.

HYDE Cruising Chute’s are available with luff lengths from 8 meters through to 20 meters All sails are supplied with a Hyde Sail Launch bag.

Before ordering it is wise to measure what you want

See the measurements tab or this instructional data sheet

Attach a tape measure to the spinnaker halyard and hoist it to its max, then depending on your data sheet choice measure to the tack position that suits your yacht, using that measurement (example 12.97m) then always round that down to the next product size so in this case 12.8m so you would choose from the drop downs.

We have a data sheet that you need to download

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Using spinnakers on passage

On a long downwind passage, a spinnaker should be your friend, not your foe. duncan wells takes a look at how to make it work for cruising.

Spinnakers

The survey results are interesting because they show fewer than 40 per cent of the boats used a downwind sail – despite the fact a downwind sail gets you there quicker.

I wonder if cruisers sometimes worry too much about the symmetrical spinnaker. Are we in awe of it? It’s a big sail, true, but there are some things you can do to make it easy to work with, even if you are sailing short-handed rather than with a full racing crew.

Sailing well under spinnaker

Peak performance for a spinnaker is with the luff on the point of collapse. To achieve this a racing crew would be constantly easing and tightening the sheet.

Spinnakers

For cruisers to avoid having to give this constant attention you can do a number of things: oversheet, sail slightly more on the wind, or get the helm to ride the small changes in wind direction and strength by bearing away 10 degrees or so as the spinnaker’s luff starts to curl and then coming back on the wind when the sail is full.

Spinnakers

A spinnaker should be docile once you have set it. The key elements to this are making sure the clews are level, keeping the spinnaker pole close to boom level and seeing that the luff of the spinnaker rises vertically from the pole. If it leans out beyond the end of the pole you need to bring the pole back. If it leans in towards the mast you need to ease the pole forward.

Spinnakers

Spinnakers are perfect in lighter airs and flatter seas for a crew to handle. They become tricky when the wind freshens, especially if your crew is short-handed, and they should be taken down before the wind pipes up. It is easy to get caught out with wind strengths when running downwind. Remember that an apparent wind of 20kt on the stern or quarter if you are doing 6kt speed over ground is a true wind of 26kt – or Force 6. So if your instruments are reading apparent wind only, consider taking down the spinnaker when the dial reads 14kt, because that plus your 6kt makes 20kt, or Force 5. Alternatively, switch your wind instruments to show the true wind speed when running under spinnaker, if you have the option.

If the wind is forecast to be light enough, there’s no reason why you can’t continue to fly your spinnaker at night. Use a torch to check that all is well, to save wasting precious amps with a searchlight.

Cruising chutes – asymmetrical spinnakers

You do not have a pole to manage here but you do have a tack line to set up.

Spinnakers

Sometimes I set the cruising chute without the main. Then I find the cruising chute will run up to 30 per cent by the lee, that is, past the gybe point, without the fear of a main crashing over. Slightly over sheet the chute to avoid having to trim it constantly. Again, like a spinnaker it is at its most powerful when the luff is curling, on the point of collapse.

It is always a good idea to set your downwind sail behind the headsail but in very light airs you can despatch the headsail, then raise and unsnuff the cruising chute, unblanketed by the headsail.

Asymmetrics: tack line adjustment

When setting a cruising chute, lead the tack line back to the cockpit, so you can adjust the height of the tack.

Spinnakers

It is useful if you have no bowsprit, as you can attach a snatch block to the toe rail or a forward cleat. It keeps the tack line closer to vertical.

If you are sailing more to windward you want a short tack, which will tighten the luff of the sail; if sailing downwind, have a longer tack to allow the cruising chute to fly ahead of the boat.

At all times you want the tack line to be dead centre. If it is off to leeward you are sailing too high for the sail and if it is off to windward you are sailing too low for the sail, almost dead downwind and need to come on to the wind a bit more.

Other options

Parasailor

Alternatively you can fly twin headsails. With a No 1 genoa on a spinnaker pole and a No 2 set so the clew comes back to a block on the boom and with the boom set at 90 degrees to the boat or as close as the shrouds and stays will allow, you can sail downwind under two headsails. Variations on this are ‘twins’, identically-sized headsails, poled out on whisker poles. The trick with poling out any sail is to ensure that the poles do not dip into the water as the boat rolls. To avoid this, specially made twins tend to have the clew cut fairly high.

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Singlehanded sailing for the first time

Toby Heppell

  • Toby Heppell
  • August 31, 2020

Toby Heppell looks at the art of singlehanded sailing and considers what constitutes good seamanship when it’s only you on board

Singlehanded sailing on Sadler 29

Sailing alone gives you freedom to set off when you want, but requires a different approach. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

Singlehanded sailing is often something we associate with feats of adventure and endurance, bringing forward ideas of the lone sailor heading off across oceans.

Setting off on a significant offshore voyage on your own is a truly specialist activity.

You are likely to experience sleep deprivation, the stresses of being alone for long periods of time and the possibility of facing inclement weather by yourself.

That may well not be for all of us.

A Sadler 29 on the Solent

Editor Theo Stocker headed out on his Sadler 29 to put the advice into practice. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

But closer to home, many of us are likely to go singlehanded sailing – be it regularly or just the odd occasion, a short coastal trip or a longer voyage, or when a crew member is laid low by seasickness or other ailment.

You might end up without a crew and face the choice of leaving the boat in a distant port or taking a fair wind home alone.

You may be a couple sailing with a young child that needs constant attention, leaving the skipper to handle the boat alone.

Understanding the skills and kit necessary to successfully and safely sail by yourself is, if not an essential skill, certainly a useful string to the bow.

Freedom and responsibility of singlehanded sailing

‘Sailing solo there is the dependence on oneself that is really appealing,’ say Mervyn Wheatley, veteran of many solo ocean races and trips.

yacht cruising chute

Toby Heppell got his first boat aged four and grew up sailing on the East Coast. He has been a sailing journalist for over 15 years. Credit: Richard Langdon

‘A great deal of that appeal is that you know if something goes wrong then you are going to have to sort it out yourself.

As a solo skipper, you are master of your own destiny, entirely free to run the boat exactly as you wish.

With that comes total responsibility for everything on board: food, maintenance, sail choice, pilotage – it’s all up to you.

‘There’s an unmistakable excitement in slipping the lines and knowing that success or failure is entirely down to your resourcefulness and seamanship,’ says Wheatley.

‘Completing a solo passage satisfies like nothing else. But with that responsibility comes a significant reliance on making sure everything onboard and yourself are up to the challenge.’

In this article, I’m going to look at the various aspects you should consider to make sure you’re ready for solo coastal daysails, rather than long-distance offshore singlehanded sailing, when considerations around sleep management become more vital.

Is your boat up to singlehanded sailing?

Though the recent trend has been for ever-bigger boats, you need to be fairly agile to singlehand a boat much over 35ft, or have invested some serious money into automation.

Typically at about 35ft you are reaching the point where sail size is a big factor in terms of managing reefing and winching.

Setting up your boat so that you have to leave the helm as little as possible is important.

If you do have to leave the helm when sailing, doing so on starboard tack, keeping a good lookout and setting an autopilot will keep you in control.

A singlehanded sailor clipper on to his yacht

Clip on: Make sure your jackstays are in good condition, and let you work on deck effectively. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

A furling headsail saves foredeck work and in-mast or in-boom furling makes mainsail reefing simpler, and the slight loss of performance may not be important to you.

A slab-reefed main can take longer to reef but lines led aft make it easier.

Crucially, if you drop it as you are coming in to harbour, the main will block your vision forward unless you have lazy jacks.

Fortunately, these are easy to add if you don’t have them already, and a stack-pack sail bag makes stowing the sail even easier.

Leaving the cockpit for any reason is among the highest risks for solo sailors, particularly as handling sails at the start and end of your passage is likely to be close to harbour with more traffic around.

Lines on a Sadler 29

Lines aft: Leading lines aft helps avoid trips forward out of the cockpit. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

Leading lines back to the cockpit will make life easier, with the caveat that any friction points, particularly in single-line reefing systems, need addressing.

Taking the main halyard back to the cockpit at the very least is a must.

When it comes to mooring by yourself, ‘midships cleats are often underrated and underused, but they are invaluable,’ says ex-Navy navigator and cruising author Andy du Port.

‘With only two of us on board, we have become adept at lassoing pontoon cleats from amidships and hauling in reasonably firmly before the boat has a chance to start drifting off.’

In terms of safety, eliminating risk of going overboard is key and staying clipped on is a good way to do that.

Make sure your jackstays can be reached from inside the cockpit, and let you get to the mast or other working areas on deck.

Webbing rather than wire won’t roll underfoot.

Sensible cockpit strong points should let you move from helm to winches, halyards, instruments, and companionway without unclipping.

Optimal cockpit layout for singlehanded sailing

Whether you have a wheel or tiller, the layout of the cockpit is important as to whether it works well for singlehanded sailing.

It is worth noting, however, that a tiller can be slotted between your legs when hoisting sails or handling lines.

The ability to see a chartplotter on deck is important, as you will need to do much of your navigation from the helm and modern chart plotters make this easier.

Particularly in coastal waters, you will want to spend as little time as possible down below at the chart table so you can keep a proper lookout.

Navigation equipment fitted on the deck of a Sadler 29

Navigation: A setup that works on deck reduces time spent below. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

Effective self-steering is essential for singlehanded sailing.

An autopilot is excellent under power as the engine keeps the batteries topped up but under sail, if you haven’t trimmed correctly for a neutral helm, the autopilot has to work hard and will draw more power.

Modern units draw 2-3A but older models can draw double that.

For this reason, an easily visible battery monitor will help.

Some autopilots include a remote control you can wear on your wrist or on a lanyard to alter course.

For smaller boats or longer passages, a windvane is effective on every point of sail and draws no power.

A midships cleat on the deck of a Sadler 29

Midships: A midships cleat is a big help if you don’t have crew to help. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

However, they are vulnerable in port, and struggle under motor as prop wash confuses the servo blade.

‘If I am in coastal waters then I use an autopilot as it’s easier,’ says Wheatley.

‘If I’m nipping across the Channel then I know I can plug into the mains on the other side. I use a windvane on ocean passages.’

Ensure essentials such as handbearing compass, sunscreen and water are in place before you slip lines. Finally, get to know your boat well. A refresher on the key parts of each of your main systems might be a good idea before a singlehanded passage.

Physical limitations

Singlehanded sailing requires a reasonable level of physical fitness.

Every manoeuvre is slower and more arduous when sailing alone, so you’ll need the endurance to handle longer passages.

It’s really easy to become dehydrated, so keep a bottle of water in the cockpit, preferably in a pocket along with a few biscuits to keep your energy up and help you deal with tiredness.

Yachting Monthly editor Theo Stocker helming a Sadler 29

The demands of helming, sail handling, manoeuvring, navigation and other tasks on board while singlehanded sailing should not be underestimated. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

‘If you’re feeling a bit tired to begin with, if you’re going to sail a long way that is only going to get worse and will probably guarantee seasickness,’ explains ocean sailing legend, Pete Goss.

‘Sometimes if you just take it a bit easy at the start of a longer passage that makes things easier for the rest of the trip.

‘Plan to only go a short distance before possibly anchoring up for some hours, to make sure you get some rest and you have properly got your sea legs.

‘That can be the difference between a great solo passage and a terrible one where you are tired and sick from the off.

‘No-one functions well in that sort of condition.’

A skipper lighting a gas cooker on a boat to make a cup of tea

Nutrition: Keep yourself rested and fuelled. Heave to and put the kettle on for a break. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

‘Eating is a really important thing to focus on too,’ says record breaking skipper Dee Caffari.

‘It is really just getting the balance right and realising the effect hunger has on your body and mind.

‘I did a lot of work with sports psychologists before doing big races to understand myself a lot more.

‘Much of it was focused on understanding when I am tired and when I am hungry.

‘There are moments now when I realise I just need to eat and take a 10-minute break, and then I am a totally different person.

‘Clearly not everyone has access to a psychologist, but taking the time to notice the signs of sleep deprivation and hunger and what they mean in terms of how you function is crucial.’

Solo safety

Singlehanded sailing should be approached much like sailing at night in terms of safety.

You want everything you might need ready to hand, and to take a much more cautious approach.

A solo skipper navigating in the cockpit with a paper chart

Make sure you can navigate from the cockpit, whether on a plotter or paper chart in a plastic wallet. Time below is time not keeping a look out. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

Going overboard is not a good idea at the best of times and becomes even more serious when solo.

Everything should be done to minimise this risk.

While much of this is a matter of attitude, and planning each manoeuvre to predict the main dangers, having the right equipment in the right place will also help.

Navigation and communication

Being able to manage your boat, and all of the key navigation and safety systems from the cockpit is the key.

Think through your navigation and communications equipment.

A chart plotter and a VHF radio handset on deck will save the need to go below.

A mobile phone showing details of the SafeTrx app

Shore contact: Register your vessel details with the Coastguard on the SafeTrx app, then let a shore contact know your ETA. This can also be done with the app. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

Should you need to make a distress call, having a radio that is set up with a DSC button will make things easier.

Modern handheld VHF radios are capable of this, as are command microphones for fixed VHF sets, which also have the advantage of a longer range.

It is worth having binoculars, flares, and a grab bag easily to hand too.

AIS and radar

Making your boat more visible to others will help make up some of the potential shortfall of only having one set of eyes to keep lookout.

A properly working AIS unit, radar reflector, and potentially a radar enhancer and alarm, will help alert you to approaching vessels and you to them.

On board equipment

Though they are key bits of safety kit on any yacht, the lifebelt and danbuoy aren’t so important for singlehanded sailing, as there will be no-one left to throw them after you if you did go overboard.

But the rest of the boat’s standard equipment should be located, inspected and brought up to spec before a solo passage if they aren’t already.

These include the liferaft, fire extinguishers, bilge pump, flares, first aid kit and so on.

Man overboard

Falling overboard, serious enough with a fully-crewed boat, becomes even more unpalatable solo.

Everything should be done to avoid this possibility.

Clearly, a mindset that is consistently aware of the risk is your biggest asset, and will help you avoid doing things that could leave you exposed.

An emergency ladder aft of a yacht

MOB: You’re most likely to fall overboard when mooring. Make sure your bathing ladder can be operated from the water or rig an emergency one. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

Keeping clipped can serve as a reminder of this, and goes some way to keeping you connected to the boat, though being overboard on the end of the tether may be little better than being overboard without one.

‘I do wear a tether often,’ says Wheatley.

‘But the thing to remember about going over the side is that a tether does keep you there, but if you go over by yourself and you are tethered on, then you are not going to get back onboard.

‘However, it is much easier to find a boat than a body so I take the view that I wear one to make it easier for my family should I go over.’

Emergency ladder

Often the biggest risk of going overboard for a singlehander is actually in harbour.

Picking up the mooring buoy, or even stepping across from pontoon to boat has often led to an unexpected dunking.

This can rapidly become serious if you are wearing heavy clothing or the water is anything less than balmy, and do not have an easy means of climbing out.

For this reason many solo sailors carry an emergency ladder with a line that can be reached from the water.

In this scenario, a lifejacket will help you float during the initial phase of cold shock, and should therefore be worn, not just when things start to get ‘a bit lively’ out at sea.

Modern lifejackets are far more impressive than their early counterparts.

Lightweight, slimline, and comfortable to wear, the hood helps prevent secondary drowning and the bright colour and light makes it easier to locate you by day and night.

Crucially, technology has moved on so that it is possible to carry AIS and satellite distress beacons in or on the lifejacket.

Along with a VHF radio in your pocket, this is likely to be your only chance of calling for help at sea should the worst happen.

It should therefore be a serious consideration for anyone sailing solo, however far they venture.

Passage plan

As a solo sailor, it is a good idea to have a shore contact who you keep updated with your plans and your estimated time of arrival, and who knows to call the Coastguard with the details of your boat if you become overdue.

A grab bag and other gear on the deck of a Sadler 29

Cockpit kit: Gear close to hand should include binoculars, compass, knife and PLB, as well as grab bag, food and drink. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

This can be supplemented by having your details up to date on the RYA SafeTrx app , which the Coastguard now uses as its leisure vessel registry, as well as being an active passage-tracking tool.

Even if the alarm is raised, hopefully a phone or VHF radio call will quickly establish all is well.

Tangled ropes

It’s easy for piles of rope to mount up when there’s no second pair of hands to help.

Keep up with tidying lines away, so you don’t end up with a tangled mess that could jam just when you need a halyard to run free.

With a little patience, singlehanded sailing is rarely more difficult than sailing two- or three-up for the experienced skipper.

Manoeuvres take longer to complete and you are likely to spend more time in the cockpit than you otherwise might, but your approach to most situations will be broadly the same.

Where things can get tricky is in slipping the lines and mooring.

A solo skipper on a deck of his yacht preparing for departure

Springing the stern out is fine with crew, but springing the bow out means you can handle lines without leaving the cockpit. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

The latter being all the worse for coming at the end of your passage and so your decision making is likely to be impaired through weariness.

Slipping the lines is clearly much easier if the wind is blowing you off the pontoon.

Here your midships cleat will come in handy as you can get yourself tight to the pontoon with this and then drop the bow line, before heading back to remove the stern line and finally slipping the midships line.

Do remember to have plenty of fenders fore and aft as the boat may pivot around the midships cleat, depending on wind and tide direction.

A solo skipper steering his tiller yacht with his knees

Multi-tasking: Tiller boats can be steered with your knees while coiling lines, but don’t get distracted. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

As ever, the process for leaving a windward berth can be trickier.

It is easier to spring off the bow first as you have cockpit access to your sternline.

So this is your best option if there is little to no tide, or the tide is coming from ahead.

If there is no tide running and the wind is blowing to onto your pontoon, then you will probably need to motor astern with the stern line firm to help bring the bow out.

A Sadler 29 moored against a pontoon

Midships cleat: If you can get a midships line on, it will hold the boat to the pontoon while you sort the other lines. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

Once it moves clear of the pontoon you can motor ahead as you slip the sternline.

With the tide from astern, use a slipped bow spring.

With sufficient tide the engine does not have to be engaged; simply slip all the lines bar the bow spring, go to the foredeck, watch the stern come away from the pontoon, slip the spring and return to the cockpit.

Once you are in open water, set the engine slow ahead and engage the autopilot while you recover lines and fenders.

Lines can be coiled and fenders tidied away in the cockpit.

On the water

Before taking on any planned singlehanded sailing, your boat handling should be up to scratch, but even the best sailors will find their skills improving quickly from a bit of time on the water alone.

Thinking through manoeuvring into and out of marinas berths and moorings, and then practising this a few times can take away some of the stress of a solo trip.

A Sadler 29 being singlehanded

Heaving to: Lash the helm and back the jib to give yourself a break, but get the boat balanced first. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

At sea you need to be able to heave-to or stop comfortably, as this will give you time to boil the kettle, tend to any problems, or even have a quick break.

Manoeuvres such as tacking or reefing can also be rehearsed: which lines are eased or hauled in first, and when to put the helm down will be particular to your boat, but can be practised.

Once you’re at sea, it is worth keeping manoeuvres to a minimum when possible, as they take time and energy, and incur an element of risk.

As beating will involve a heeled boat and some tacking, it is, by its very nature, the toughest point of sail.

Self-steering

Vane steering systems or an autopilot that can adjust the course to the wind shifts, will keep the boat steering effectively.

Some newer autopilots also have tacking and gybing functions, leaving you free to concentrate on trimming the sails.

Autopilot on a Sadler 29

An autopilot or self-steering is vital. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

An autopilot remote is also an option, giving you access to control from anywhere on the boat (usually worn on the wrist).

It’s also worth spending time on your passage planning and general theory.

Going below for five minutes to check when the tide turns or to find out what a specific light means will be five minutes that you’re not on deck keeping a lookout.

When coming in to harbour, start the engine relatively far out from your destination to give you time to douse sail and prepare yourself.

Lazyjacks prevent a dropped mainsail blowing off the boom and restricting visibility forward.

Rig your fenders and lines in open water where you have space to drift or motor slowly under autopilot.

If you do not yet know where you will be going it is well worth fendering port and starboard with stern and midships lines on both sides.

A Sadler 29 rigged with fenders entering Lymington harbour

Rig fenders and lines once you’re out of the waves, but before you enter confined waters. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

Most marinas will send someone to help you if you radio ahead and let them know that you are on your own, or others on the pontoon will normally be happy to catch a line, but you should be prepared to do things alone if needed.

Coming alongside a pontoon, the midships line is critical.

Position the tail so that it is easily picked up when you move forward from the helm.

Prepare bow and stern lines and bring the ends amidships so you can reach them from the pontoon.

A Sadler 29 coming alongside a pontoon in Lymington

Boat handling: Without someone to take the lines ashore, being able to get your boat stopped where you want it makes life much easier. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

Stop the boat dead with your midships cleat as close as possible to your selected pontoon cleat, and throw a lasso of rope over it – a skill well worth practising.

Sweat the line to bring the boat as close as you can.

You are then secure and have more time to take bow and stern lines across and adjust your position.

You can also use the midships line as a spring.

A skipper wearing a lifejacket throwing a line from a yacht

Stern line: Throw a coil of line from each hand to lasso a cleat at the stern. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

Once the line is made off, put the engine ahead with the helm towards the pontoon.

This will hold the boat snug alongside while you sort the other lines.

A main sail being dropped on a yacht

Lazy jacks: When dropping the main, lazyjacks help prevent the sail blocking the view and let you delay a trip on deck. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

This is harder if the wind is blowing off the pontoon; your boat handling has to be positive and accurate.

If coming alongside isn’t working, getting a line onto a cleat from the bow or stern will get you secure and give you time to warp the boat in.

A solo skipper putting on a midships line

Which line first? If the wind is offshore, the midships line is useful to get on first. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

If you don’t fancy it, consider picking up a swinging mooring or dropping the anchor until help is available or the conditions change.

The key to mooring alone is to be ready beforehand, in open water, and to have planned what order you will do things in.

A sadler 29 coming alongside a pontoon

Midships spring: Helm to the pontoon and forward gear will hold you alongside. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

This can be practised while you have crew by getting the boat to stop in her berth without relying on lines to take the boat’s way off.

It looks much better too!

Don’t get overpowered

Managing the amount of sail you have set before you become overpowered is more important when you are singlehanded sailing as it takes longer to reduce sail and you will have no extra pairs of hands if things get exciting.

If you know it’s going to be a windy sail, reef before you leave your mooring.

If you have a ramshorn for the tack reefing point, you may need a small piece of bungee to hold the cringle in place until you have hoisted the sail.

Cockpit of a Sadler 29

Reef earlier than you would with crew. It’ll save energy, reduce risk and reflect a more conservative approach. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

If you are already out on the water, reef early, before the wind increases too much.

Be conservative with how early you reef.

Before you tackle reefing the mainsail, furl away some of the headsail.

This will slow the boat, making the motion easier and reducing heel, so making reefing the main easier.

Having a more heavily reefed main, and using the genoa to fine-tune the sailing area with the furling line also makes changing gears singlehanded less arduous and avoids trips on deck before needing to shake out or take in the next reef.

A singlehanded sail clipped on to his yacht via a harness

Going forward to the mast, make sure you are clipped on. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

‘For short-handed crews, mainsails need to be quick to drop in an emergency and require no feeding when hoisting, to avoid unnecessary trips out of the cockpit,’ says Pip Hare .

‘Avoid using a main with a bolt rope, because when the sail is dropped it will not remain captive at the mast and can quickly become uncontrollable.’

Downwind, keeping the rig under control requires some forethought.

A main boom preventer should be used if you’re sailing deep downwind, but is precarious to rig at sea, so have this ready before you set off, or even rig one on each side.

Most singlehanders are likely to be reluctant to set coloured sails off the wind in all but the best conditions and using a headsail, poled out, is more likely.

A man pulling on lines on a yacht

Keep rope tails tidy when singlehanded sailing to prevent a dangerous tangle in the cockpit. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

To set your poled-out headsail, begin by furling it away while you ready a pole on the windward side with uphaul, downhaul and guy.

This will give you full control of the sail from the cockpit.

Once you are set up it is simply a case of unfurling the sail and trimming from the helm.

It’s an easy and easily manageable solution and can be furled away without dropping the pole.

Yellow bungee holding a sail in place on a yacht

If your reefing system has ramshorns, a piece of bungee can hold it in place while you go aft. Credit: Richard Langdon/Ocean Images

It will be easiest to furl the sail before you gybe, then attend to changing over the pole before again unfurling.

Setting a spinnaker or cruising chute is a more long-winded process solo so should only be taken on if you have a long leg ahead of you and you are sailing in relatively traffic-free waters.

A cruising chute is simpler to set up than a spinnaker.

Rigging can be done with the headsail furled and hoisted in its snuffer.

You’ll probably need to be on the foredeck to raise the snuffer, so make sure you are secure before doing so.

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Set the boat on a course deep downwind until you can get back to the cockpit to trim the sail.

Hoisting a spinnaker takes more planning and more time both to set and douse.

For gybing either of them, you would be best to snuff or drop the sail and reset on the new side.

Singlehanded sailing checklist

  • Boat well maintained with all known faults rectified
  • Sail handling arrangement set up with lines back to cockpit if possible
  • Autopilot or self-steering set up, calibrated and working, with remote if available
  • Hove-to practised and balanced sail plan checked
  • Furling headsail and mainsail lazyjacks set up and working
  • Enough fenders and mooring lines to rig both sides, and means of getting midships line onto a pontoon cleat
  • Confident you can handle the boat for the given forecast
  • Practised mooring, manoeuvring and sail handling alone
  • Well rested ahead of passage
  • Food and drink prepared in advance and available on deck
  • Familiar with boat’s key systems and how to troubleshoot each of them
  • Short passages and daysailing in coastal waters are better
  • Avoid overnight passages initially
  • Full passage plan completed with necessary notes available on deck
  • Passage plan and ETA shared with shore contact, coastguard or RYA SafeTrx app
  • Boat details registered on RYA SafeTrx app or website

Safety and kit

  • Adopt conservative approach to risk and safety
  • VHF radio on deck
  • Chartplotter or paper chart on deck
  • Wearing lifejacket at all times, particularly start and end of passage recommended
  • Carry personal safety equipment, including VHF, knife, torch, and PLB or AIS beacon
  • Jackstays rigged, tether clipped on
  • Emergency ladder in reach from water
  • Have easily available: wet weather gear, binoculars, handbearing compass, knife, sunscreen, snacks, and water.

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yacht cruising chute

1. Flotilla Radisson Royal

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2. Moscow River Boat Tours

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3. Sup-Club

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4. Akvanavt Diving Centre

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5. Diving Center Crocus City Oceanarium

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6. CheapRussia Tours

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7. Kite School Kiteclass

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8. SUP Center

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9. Erwin. Reka

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11. Easy Russia Tour Guide

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12. Lovely Russia Tours

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13. Capital River Boat Tours - Moscow Centre

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14. Alfa Centr

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15. Diving Club Divers

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16. Sup Outdoor

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17. MORE MOSCOW

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19. Soho Sailing Style

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20. Diving Center Crocodile

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21. Dive-Project

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22. Mosparokhodstvo

imyshin

24. Kosinskiy Children Marine Club

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25. Kayak Moscow

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26. DIVECLUB CHE

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27. FLOW Moscow

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28. Moswake

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29. Morskiye Volki

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30. S-cruises

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What travelers are saying

Pete17

  • CheapRussia Tours
  • Easy Russia Tour Guide
  • Lovely Russia Tours
  • MORE MOSCOW
  • Insider Moscow Tours
  • Flotilla Radisson Royal
  • Moscow River Boat Tours
  • Capital River Boat Tours - Moscow Centre
  • Diving Center Crocus City Oceanarium

IMAGES

  1. New cruising chute

    yacht cruising chute

  2. Cruising Chutes

    yacht cruising chute

  3. sailing with cruising chute

    yacht cruising chute

  4. Cruising Chutes

    yacht cruising chute

  5. Kimo's Cruising chute

    yacht cruising chute

  6. Cruising Chute

    yacht cruising chute

COMMENTS

  1. How to use a cruising chute

    2. Sailing the boat at the correct angle is what matters during the hoist.The cruising chute is nearly up but still hanging limply in the mainsail's lee. Credit: David Harding. 3. Now it's fully hoisted and the cockpit crew can start to tension the sheet. Credit: David Harding.

  2. Cruising Chute demonstration

    A snapshot of Yachting Monthly cruising chute demonstration from the 2011 London Boat Show. In 2012 look forward to the Spinnaker demonstrationMusic: Prelude...

  3. Tri-Radial Cruising Chute

    Description. E-Sails Tri-Radial Cruising Chutes are a super easy-to-use design, their flying shape is optimised for a broad range of reaching angles, so they will greatly enhance your downwind sailing pleasure and boat speed. They can be hoisted from a Launch Bag like a spinnaker - or they can be used with a Snuffer (both items are available ...

  4. Cruising Chutes

    Our most popular downwind sail for cruising yachts of all sizes. This sail is a slightly de-tuned asymmetric spinnaker to minimise trimming and simplify handling whilst giving a serious boost to downwind speed and fun. Setting and recovery made easier with a Squeezer/Snuffer or our ultimate handling system, Magic Furl, making it easy to set and ...

  5. Sailing Mastery: A Deep Dive into Cruising Chutes, Genoa Sails, and

    At the heart of this maritime artistry lies the cruising chute—a sail that propels sailors into the realm of downwind delights. In this guide, we'll navigate through the intricacies of sailing, uncovering the magic of cruising chutes, exploring genoa sails, and mastering advanced techniques that elevate your sailing prowess. Sailing Downwind ...

  6. PDF Don't let your cruising cruising chute Fly it with confidence! says

    cruising chute is designed to be carried from a close to a broad reach, without a pole and all of the gear that goes with it. This makes it the Yachting Monthly is supporting a cruising chute demo at the London Boat Show, from January 7-16 at ExCeL. John Goode and his team will run the demo, using a chute provided by Hyde Sails. The aim

  7. What is a Cruising Chute?

    What is a Cruising Chute? A cruising chute is primarily the same as a gennaker or asymmetric spinnaker. However, cruising chutes tend to be a little easier to handle than a racing asymmetric sail and in many cases they are more modest in size and are cut a little more conservatively. Like gennakers and Asymmetric kites, cruising chutes are ...

  8. Downwind secrets of ocean sailors

    Cruising chute, symmetrical spinnaker, poled-out headsail or twin headsails offer a pay off between east of use and boat speed. Credit: Colin Work You can goosewing a cruising chute which increases its flexibility to some extent, but they can be tricky to control compared to a poled-out headsail.

  9. Cruising Chutes

    The Radial Head Cruising Chute. is a high performance sail designed for the Cruising Yachtsman where ease of handling is of prime importance.. No pole is required and the sail can be used with wind strength up to force four and as close as 70 degrees off the bow. This particular sail is light yet strong enough to withstand considerable pressure without distortion.

  10. Sailing with the cruising chute

    Using our cruising chute as a reaching sail 60 degrees off the wind

  11. Cruising Chute

    HYDE SAILS 1.5 oz Cruising Chutes are a range of standard size Asymmetric's with 8 Panel layout options which are available in red, white and blue only. The sails are manufactured from Challenge nylon Fibermax 64. HYDE Cruising Chute's are available with luff lengths from 8 meters through to 20 meters All sails are supplied with a Hyde Sail ...

  12. Which is the best way to sail downwind?

    By sailing the angles the cruising chute boat avoids the entire issue of roll as heel will be constant. Speed, and therefore apparent wind, is highest of the three set-ups too. In stronger winds broaching is possible if the boat heels so far that the rudder stalls. In stronger breeze, the greater sail area is a liability. LEAST HASSLE: Cruising ...

  13. Using spinnakers safely and for maximum affect at sea

    A cruising chute will not fly as directly downwind as a spinnaker if you have the main set. Sometimes I set the cruising chute without the main. Then I find the cruising chute will run up to 30 per cent by the lee, that is, past the gybe point, without the fear of a main crashing over. Slightly over sheet the chute to avoid having to trim it ...

  14. Bowsprits: Why They Make Sense

    Modern reaching sails will keep a boat moving in almost anything. Photo by Graham Snook. ... However, cruisers tend to just use one, a cruising chute, i.e., an asymmetric spinnaker that has less sail area than its racing counterpart and narrower shoulders (the top of the spinnaker) making it easier to handle and less fussy when it comes to ...

  15. Downwind sails: spinnakers, asymmetrics and code zeros

    Cruising code zeros may be built from nylon or, more usually, from a super-lightweight Dacron or laminate material - generally little more than 1.5oz for a 36-38ft boat. In some cases the sail shape has more similarity to that of an out-sized genoa than a downwind spinnaker. In many people's mind such a reaching sail is typified by the code ...

  16. Downwind sails: How to pick the right one and fly it

    Terms such as cruising chute, gennaker, asymmetric and reacher can all be used to describe the same sail. However, code sails, asymmetrics and the Parasailor are fairly distinct families. ... Cruising yachts tend to carry one all-purpose sail, optimised for the mid-range of wind angles and strength, often referred to as a gennaker.

  17. Used Cruising Chute for Sale

    Cruising Chute. Lucas Sails Crusing Chute / Asymmetrical, only ever had light use, comes with sock and sheets. 10.5 x 11.7 with a foot of 6.1m...Find out more. Cruising Chute. Lucas Sails Crusing Chute / Asymmetrical, only ever had light use, comes with sock and sheets. 10.5 x 11.7 with a foot of 6.1m...Find out more ... Yachts and Boats for ...

  18. Boat tours and river cruises through Moscow: where to take them

    On this map you can see the details of the longest and most classic of the Flotilla Radisson boat tours: 2. Companies that do boat tours on the Moskva River. There are many companies that do cruises on the Moskva River, but the 4 main ones are: Capital River Boat Tour Company (CCK) Mosflot. Flotilla Radisson.

  19. Singlehanded sailing for the first time

    Setting a spinnaker or cruising chute is a more long-winded process solo so should only be taken on if you have a long leg ahead of you and you are sailing in relatively traffic-free waters. A cruising chute is simpler to set up than a spinnaker. Rigging can be done with the headsail furled and hoisted in its snuffer.

  20. All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024)

    Flotilla "Radisson Royal" has 10 perfectly equipped yachts designed for year-round entertaining excursion cruises on the Moscow River with restaurant service aboard. Our company organizes cruises 365 days a year. Flotilla "Radisson Royal, Moscow" combines picturesque views of Moscow sights with excellent catering service.

  21. Radisson cruises along the Moscow river

    Classic Radisson cruise from Gorky Park. 2,5 hours to see the capital's main attractions. An English audio guide, as well as a delicious menu will contribute to your comfort. Dinner trip on Radisson yacht in Moscow. A great option to try Russian seafood served by one of the best fish restaurant. Also, enjoy the live jazz band.

  22. THE 10 BEST Moscow Boat Rides & Cruises (Updated 2024)

    Set sail on your destination's top-rated boat tours and cruises. Whether it's an entertaining and informative boat tour or a relaxing sunset dinner cruise, these are the best Moscow cruises around. Looking for something more adventurous? Check out our list of must-do water activities in Moscow. See reviews and photos of boat tours & water sports in Moscow on Tripadvisor.