Sailing – Wind Direction

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 24,347
    This video will give sailing basics and discuss wind direction.

    Alex Schulte: Hi, I am Alex Schulte with the Washington Sailing Marina's Summer Sailing School and I am teaching you how to sail. This is wind direction, points of sail and sail trim. One of the most important things when you are sailing is wind direction, you always have to know where the wind is coming from. There are many easy ways to find out where the wind is from? Whether you are looking at flags or at smokestacks or any variety of things that point where the wind is coming from. My favorite way to find out where is wind is coming from is to look around with my head and find the point where I have equal amounts of wind on my left and right ear and then I know that I am looking straight into the wind. On a clock if the wind were coming from 12 o'clock you cannot sail towards any direction between 10 o'clock and 2 o'clock. This is called in irons. You cannot sail between 10 o'clock and 2 o'clock because the wind will be coming straight from your bow. The closest you can sail to the wind is at 2 o'clock. This is called a close-haul of course and you have to pull your sail all the way in. Next between 2 o'clock and 3 o'clock is called a close-reach. For this point of sail you want to have your sail pulled about a quarter of the way in right about off the corner of your boat. The next point of sail is a beam-reach, this is when the wind is coming perpendicular across your boat and you are heading at about 3 o'clock. For this point of sail you want to have your sail about half way out. The next point of sail is a broad-reach. This is any point in between 3 o'clock and 6 o'clock and you want to have your main-sail three quarters of the way out. The last point of sail is a down wind run. This is when you are heading towards 6 o'clock and the wind is coming straight across your stern. For this point of sail you want to have your sail all the way out like a big parachute to catch all the wind. An easy way to figure out where your sail should as long as you are not in irons and the sail is slapping over your head is to let the sail out until it starts flapping a little bit. Next you pull it in just enough so it's full air again. That was wind direction, points of sail and sail trim. Next is tacking and jibing when sailing.