A-Z of Yachting terms!

winchEver wondered when you are on a yacht charter what some of those yachting terms mean? Whether you are a novice sailor or an experienced one, have a look at our A-Z of yachting terms which includes some of the obvious to the obscure! How many do you know?

Abeam – At a right angle to the length of the boat

Bulkhead – Refers to an often watertight, interior wall on the boat

Clew – The lower aft corner of a sail

Draft – This describes the depth of a boat measured from the deepest point to the waterline

Ensign – The national flag of the boats home country

Forepeak- The cabin most forward in the bow of the boat

Goosewinging – To sail downwind with the mainsail set on one side and the foresail on the other

Halyard – A line which is used to raise things on a boat, so the main halyard line would be used to raise the mainsail

Inlet – A recess, such as a cove or bay, along a coastline

Jackstay – A strong line, that can be made of wire, which runs fore and aft alongside the boat that can be used to attach your safety harness to.

Ketch – A sailboat with 2 masts

Leeway – The sideways movement of a boat caused by wind and currents

Multihull – Any boat that has more than one hull, such as a catamaran.

Neap tide – When during the four week tidal cycle, the tide rises and drops the least.

Outhaul – This is a line used to tension the foot of the sail, to better control the curvature of the sail

Pulpit – A sturdy rail around the deck on the bow, normally surrounding the forestay

Quadrant – This is a device connected to the rudder that the steering cables attach to

Regatta – Boat races

Shroud – The wires at the side that hold the mast up

Tender – A small boat or dinghy used to ferry crew between the boat and shore

Unfurl – To unroll a sail

Vane – A wind direction indicator

Winch – A mechanical device for pulling in a line

X – marks the spot on the treasure map!

Yawing – The side to side movement of a boat on an uneven course

Zephyr – A very light westerly wind


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