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Thread: Best way for newbie to become boating competent in ocean

  1. #1
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    Default Best way for newbie to become boating competent in ocean

    I have some river boating experience and have crewed on sailboats, but have very little in the way of ocean power boat experience.

    I am currently in the market for an ocean boat (20'-30') and in preparation have done some basic online boating safety courses with intro to navigation, tides, currents etc. Other than getting on the water and putting in the hours to earn my stripes, any advice on recommended courses or reading to get me ready with boating safety as the primary concern?

    Thanks,

    mhk

  2. #2

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    Best "course" is to pick a waterway to get to know, then spend time on it with the "teacher" that knows it well. Following that, bring your boat along and shadow the teacher in his for a trip or two. There's just so much local knowledge that never makes it into brick and mortar classrooms, and so much theory and generalization that sails right over the head of reality.

  3. #3
    Member Dan in Alaska's Avatar
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    The Whittier CG Aux usually offers a boating safety and seamanship course in the spring. It's taught by Alaskans, focuses on Alaskan waters, and it's cheap. There is a wealth of knowledge shared by local boaters, and they touch on many of the topics you're interested in learning. They even present some basics for knot tying and radio communication. The casual break-time conversations can be really valuable, as well.

    If nothing else, get with some forum members and see what they do to get their boats ready for the season. Feel free to PM me with your phone number. I like talking about boats.

  4. #4
    Member Grizzly Man's Avatar
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    Get to know the waters you'll be in. By that I mean to find the protected waters depending on wind direction. I read "the cruising guide to Prince William Sound". Weather can change quickly, so prepare for the worst, but hope for the best.
    "What is it about a beautiful sunny afternoon, with the birds singing and the wind rustling through the leaves, that makes you want to get drunk? --Jack Handy

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    Member tzieli22's Avatar
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    Brown bear has good advice for sure. Also take 1 or 2 coast guard classes if you can. Pick up a copy Chapman's piloting and Seamanship book (I think they are up 66th addition now) and read it a lot... Make sure you have 2 radios, one fixed, and one portable (if you can afford it). Never cut corners with safety gear... Never!!!

    Lastly, as mentioned, spend some time getting to know the water. Mother Nature and the ocean can get a "mad on" without notice and if your not prepared, she'll make for a really bad day for you and your guests.

    Did I mention safety gear? If not, have all your safety gear up to date and know how to use it all ,very well.

    Other than these things, have fun and be safe. If your ever in Seward, let me know and I'd be happy to run you through my boat and gear.
    Tony

  6. #6

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    All great advice. Can't stress the value of even just "putting" around on your boat, when you get one. Get to know it with your eyes closed, know intimately were all the wiring runs are, all the fuses, circuit breakers, etc are located. Label all this stuff so you know what's what.
    Take the courses for sure but there's no better or quicker teacher than being on the water; where you located?
    I'm in Homer, boat is in water pretty much year round, you're welcome to jump aboard if you're in town.
    did someone mention safety stuff?
    Check out Quickwater Adventure water taxi/transport services: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Quick...37553606260978

  7. #7
    Member redleader's Avatar
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    Jump in head first, if you survive your first few years you'll be on your way.

  8. #8

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    Classes are good. Another good thing to do is to learn to read a weather forecast. Don't go out when it's going to blow. Boating is easy when it's flat water. Get some waves and wind for a newbie, and things can be a bit overwhelming.

  9. #9
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    Thanks for all the great advice guys, and thanks for the offers of direct teaching help. I may take you up on it.

    MHK


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

  10. #10
    Member sisusuomi's Avatar
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    good thread I'm in the same boat. bought the chapman and coastal pilot #8 books, taking the CGAux classes(two so far)
    lots of river experience, was a crew member in Bristol but never a skipper
    getting to know the boat by installing radio, GPS, downrigger wiring, some of this and some of that

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