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hire a captain first afternoon? #30932
12/29/2014 06:44 AM
12/29/2014 06:44 AM
Joined: Dec 2014
Posts: 2
NY
S
stevo34 Offline OP
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stevo34  Offline OP
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NY
Hi all,

Myself and my girlfriend are planning our first trip to the BVIs at the beginning of February, chartering a 34 foot monohull with BVIYC. I’ve been an avid reader of the TTOL forum over the past few months and it’s been a great source of advice and inspiration!

I have a question that I’m hoping to get some opinions on. My girlfriend is a relative newcomer to sailing (she has her ASA101 and has sailed as crew on friends’ boats). While I'm confident in handling the boat short-handed, I’m thinking about hiring a skipper on the first afternoon to make it more relaxing for both of us. Mainly I’m hoping to have a reassuring voice and an extra pair of hands while we practice our routine for picking up a mooring ball, anchoring etc. Would a check-out captain facilitate that kind of afternoon?

A related question is whether hiring a skipper would restrict us on the first night’s anchorage? We’re chartering out of Road Town (with a sleep aboard the night before), and had initially thought we might spend our first night at the Bight on Norman. But I guess that if we want to also practice some boat handling and the skipper needs to be able to get home, this might restrict us to staying nearer the charter base?

cheers
Steve

BVI Sponsors
Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: stevo34] #30933
12/29/2014 09:12 AM
12/29/2014 09:12 AM
Joined: Jul 2008
Posts: 3,001
S
sail445 Offline
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sail445  Offline
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Posts: 3,001
It seems you both have some experience.
I wouldn't hire a Capt.
When your ready to pick up a mooring or to anchor you'll be motoring.

Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: stevo34] #30934
12/29/2014 09:14 AM
12/29/2014 09:14 AM
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 1,876
Maine
Breeze Offline
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Breeze  Offline
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Posts: 1,876
Maine
' Check with Pirates Bight Restaurant about the ferry schedule to the Bight from their dock at Hanna Bay, Tortola. ( other side of harbour entrance ,opposite Peglegs Landing Restaurant at Nanny Cay)."
https://www.ultimatebvi.com/norman-island/beaches/bight/

284-496-7827


If that doesn't work out, you might consider Trellis Bay/Marina Cay for the first night anchorage/mooring. Easy Peasy for a check-out captain to get home from either of them.

Cooper island is another possibility, as the dive shop there also runs a boat to get their staff back to Tola at the end of the day.

Peter Island I believe, also has a staff boat that goes back and forth.

BVIYC will certainly let you know your options, also.

Breeze

Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: stevo34] #30935
12/29/2014 09:16 AM
12/29/2014 09:16 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 929
Knoxville, Tennessee
Fred Offline
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Fred  Offline
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Knoxville, Tennessee
Several year's ago, I did exactly what you are thinking about with BVIYC. At that time, the captain was able to catch a ride back from Norman on one of the boats that took employees to work - probably what is now Pirates. He made his own arrangements for this.
If this isn't possible, you can probably drop the captain off somewhere else on Tortola like Trellis or Sopers. You may have to pay his or her taxi fare back to RT.
Fred

Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: Fred] #30936
12/29/2014 01:45 PM
12/29/2014 01:45 PM
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 3,216
Somewhere out there
kneafseym Offline
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Somewhere out there
this is a great idea, your afternoon will set your learning curve almost vertical and make the rest of the trip relaxing, plus you will get some local knowledge not in the guide books. A boat back from Pirates or Willy T is possible and the captain will know how to set it up.

Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: kneafseym] #30937
12/29/2014 06:40 PM
12/29/2014 06:40 PM
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 130
sunbvi Offline
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sunbvi  Offline
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Very good idea! Safety first. And if you are clever return the boat 2-3 times to the dock under the guidance of the professional skipper before you start to Norman etc. Maybe you have to refill you water tank while the trip etc. and if your girlfriend knows which line has to be "managed" first on a docking maneuver in accordance to the wind direction or where to put how many fenders in which height it can relax your vacation so much :-)

hire a captain first afternoon? #30938
12/29/2014 06:55 PM
12/29/2014 06:55 PM
Joined: Jul 2008
Posts: 3,001
S
sail445 Offline
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sail445  Offline
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I really think they have enough experience and have to just cut the lines and go for it

Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: sail445] #30939
12/29/2014 07:07 PM
12/29/2014 07:07 PM
Joined: Feb 2014
Posts: 252
J
jboothe Offline
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Quote
sail445 said:
I really think they have enough experience and have to just cut the lines and go for it


I agree with you...

Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: sail445] #30940
12/29/2014 07:16 PM
12/29/2014 07:16 PM
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 130
sunbvi Offline
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sunbvi  Offline
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Quote
sail445 said:
I really think they have enough experience and have to just cut the lines and go for it


This is very difficult to say from a distance :-)

Beside this I think it is very useful to practice a little bit when you are on a boat which is new for you/you are not used to. Strong side winds while docking in a narrow harbor e.g. can be very challenging especially on a charter boat when your not used to a boat as owners are. Why not practicing a little bit before starting the trip :-)

Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: sunbvi] #30941
12/29/2014 08:00 PM
12/29/2014 08:00 PM
Joined: Mar 2012
Posts: 635
Redmond, WA
MrEZgoin Offline
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MrEZgoin  Offline
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Redmond, WA
That's 101 more ASA's than any of my crew have ever had :-)


M4000 "Lio Kai"
Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: MrEZgoin] #30942
12/29/2014 08:12 PM
12/29/2014 08:12 PM
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 969
NC, USA
capndar Offline
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capndar  Offline
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NC, USA
Personally I would not - BUT - If the lady's happier this way, everyone will be happier.


Capndar
Masters 50 GT Sail/Power/Towing
3rd generation sailor
Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: capndar] #30943
12/29/2014 09:27 PM
12/29/2014 09:27 PM
Joined: Oct 2012
Posts: 252
Chicago, IL
Showdavid Offline
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Showdavid  Offline
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Chicago, IL
Look,
If this is your first charter and the two of you are alone, a half day with a captain will set both your minds at ease. You'll know what you thought you knew and learn what you didn't. It's really not hard to do it on your own, but to have the reassurance from a captain, it'll all be downhill.
Happy sailing


Dave
Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: Showdavid] #30944
12/29/2014 10:18 PM
12/29/2014 10:18 PM
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 5,718
Massachusetts
maytrix Offline
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maytrix  Offline
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I think the best answer is if the OP feels they need it, then they should do it. If they don't, then there's no need.

The important thing is to know your ability and comfort level and stay within that.


Matt
Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: MrEZgoin] #30945
12/29/2014 10:38 PM
12/29/2014 10:38 PM
Joined: Oct 2008
Posts: 5,860
Bradenton, FL
Winterstale Offline
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Winterstale  Offline
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Bradenton, FL
I think it's a great idea, particularly since it's just the two of you. It will just make your first day that much easier.

BVIYC is a top notch outfit - which boat do you have? We've chartered from them for five years now. Love the whole staff.


[Linked Image]

Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: stevo34] #30946
12/30/2014 12:48 AM
12/30/2014 12:48 AM
Joined: May 2011
Posts: 1,173
JAX
jphart Offline
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JAX
Welcome Steve,

It’s all about expectations. What do you expect to accomplish in 2-3 hours with a check-out captain?

Boat handling skills? Anchoring drills? Mooring pickup and release? Docking? Help with what is basically single-handling sailing? Trim and fine points of sailing?

All may be needed, but how much can you expect to accomplish in a couple of hours with somebody you’ve never met, and who may have his own agenda – different than yours.

The party with the most experience with boat-handling skills should command the helm. With the proper technique the other mate can handle the mooring ball pickup, anchoring duties, or passing a dock line off. But of course, the more experience - the more comfortable you both will be. And then the entire experience will be great for you both!

Personal experience and story…
On and off I’ve sailed, crewed, and owned boats for decades. Got re-interested in sailing again a few years ago via a Moorings owner. We sailed as crew,then active charter responsible party... with my Admiral mostly looking lovely, providing company, acting as relay between helmsman and bow-person, and fetching a cold beverage or two. But after a couple of couples charters, SHE suggested a smaller monohull with just the two of us. So we chartered a 34.5 Bene from Conch Charters. (did the sleep aboard too. Hot at the dock, but it did help that I knew a lot about the boat by the morning)

She was comfortable with my abilities, but was concerned if she could pick-up a ball or drop the anchor. So we had pre-arranged for a captain for a couple of hours on the first day. The captain who showed up was different than who had been confirmed, and with whom we had provided some basic information; but we gave it a go. First couple of passes at a ball in the harbor of Ft. Burt, and she had some challenges of grabbing the painter. He had her standing tall, and bending over the safety lines. Then he suggested that she take the helm, and I grab the painter. No problems for me at all, but the fellow was back with her, guiding her step by step. (Later after an near disaster, we changed positions - I taught her to get low – even lay on the deck to reach the painter with the boat-hook, she was 6 for 6 after that). She wasn’t comfortable at the helm at all, couldn’t even sense Forward, Neutral, Reverse. With me at the helm, I’m 99.3% sure of a ball snag on the first try. Into the wind, slow and easy, and I have the bow on the painter at a dead stop. It is really pretty easy in the BVI. Tides and currents really aren’t an issue.

I had planned to drop the fellow off at Peter Island so he could catch a ride back from there. But the new guy said no, we’d just holler on the VHF for a dingy ride for him back to Conch and we’d be on our way. We didn’t have time for a little more info on the particulars of this mono that I hadn’t been on before. (Reef positions, sail trim, etc.) And really didn't get beyond the RoadTown outer channel marker. Did NOT get a ROI on my couple hundred dollar investment.

I’d suggest you know for sure in advance if you can drop him off at Peter or Norman. Might be better to go to Trellis or Marina Cay your first night. Easy for him to get back from there. You might even try with a captain for a full day than just a couple of hours. Probably close to the same cost. Sure, you lose the privacy the first night at sea, but might be a better ROI in the long run.

We sail locally with another couple on their 43’ Hunter. That Admiral commands the helm and brings the boat back to the slip while HE stands by with lines and jumps off to the dock. She backs it up stern-to perfectly with two 90 degree turns (nice bow thruster helps!) So it is all about the communication and comfort level for each crew member.

Stay cool, keep reasonable expectations, and communicate. Keep reading and ask questions. You’ll have a blast and will be back. Little bit of luck helps; hope you get lucky too!

JPH


JPH
I spent my money on booze, broads, and boats...the rest I wasted.
Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: MrEZgoin] #30947
12/30/2014 06:29 AM
12/30/2014 06:29 AM
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 414
Memphis, TN
beerMe Offline
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Posts: 414
Memphis, TN
Stevo,

It's really your decision but FWIW if you feel confident I think she will sense that and as long as you discuss how you're going to moor/anchor ahead of time and you keep your cool even if things don't always go as expected, you'll be fine on your own. I started out almost single handing things and now my wife insists on catching the ball and lowering the anchor and cleating the dingy. There were a few "next time we will do it like this" moments the first few times but now it's second nature, almost! (I have to sneak around to double check things when she isn't looking)!

All of the little things matter, like "make sure there is a float on the mooring line" you're approaching, "make sure to get the lines under the safety line" and "make sure you cleat one end, run it through the line and then get it cleated to something before we drift away". As long as she knows what to expect before it happens you'll be fine. Don't forget, no shame in doing a go-around if things don't unfold as expected!


Life involves risks, take some prudent ones (NOT with the BVI ferries)!
Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: beerMe] #30948
12/30/2014 09:49 AM
12/30/2014 09:49 AM
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 5,718
Massachusetts
maytrix Offline
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maytrix  Offline
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Posts: 5,718
Massachusetts
Regardless of what you decide, be sure to go over man over boats procedures with her. She needs to know what to do if you were to fall over board.


Matt
Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: maytrix] #30949
12/30/2014 10:04 AM
12/30/2014 10:04 AM
Joined: Aug 2009
Posts: 2,545
Here and There
rita_irvine Offline
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rita_irvine  Offline
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Here and There
Work out a set of hand signals ahead of time. You really cannot communicate well verbally. In our boat middle finger not acceptable form of hand signal until after the boat is securely moored.


Rita
It is better to be happy than it is to be right

[Linked Image]
Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: rita_irvine] #30950
12/30/2014 10:51 AM
12/30/2014 10:51 AM
Joined: Feb 2014
Posts: 252
J
jboothe Offline
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jboothe  Offline
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Since everyone else is offering their two cents I might as well offer mine. I took my completely non-sailing/non-boating wife last year to the BVI. I have sailed quite a bit several years back and have done the ASA bareboating course but it had been a while since I had been sailing. We chartered a 32' mono from Sunsail (the baby boat as all the staff affectionately called her <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/Grin.gif" alt="" />). A few things that worked for us and a few that were a bother:

Man overboard: You will be basically singlehanding the boat so don’t count on her coming back to get you! Don’t fall overboard. I taught her to throw a flotation device in the water, release the dinghy, start the engine, drop the sails and use the VHF. Interestingly I just took the ASA 114 course late last summer after our trip so I could be prepared to drive a cat for our next trip. The captain conducting the course and I were having discussions about MOB drills and talking about my last trip with my wife. I mentioned that I told her to release the dinghy and drop the sails. He looked at me and said you know after 30 years of sailing I never thought of that. You have a highly visible motorized Type IV flotation device…

Mooring and anchoring: Everyone is different but we found it much easier for her to drive and for me to pick up the moorings. She can drive the boat no problem and she should be just following your signals, slow, left, right stop. Just point the boat hook at the mooring ball and have her go where you point, hold your hand up to stop, down for reverse. We grabbed moorings everywhere we went and didn’t miss a single one. In fact she was very proud of herself the first one we picked up at Cooper the first try.

The only issues we had was trying to get the boat out of the slip at Sunsail where it was wedged between a large mono, a cat and pylons with the dinghy in between all of it. I think the staff there thought we had everything under control and didn’t offer much assistance but we managed and we didn’t break anything.

The autohelm went out the second day. Normally not a problem but raising and lower the main was a little bit more work with my wife driving. “Now Sweetie, I need you to keep the boat pointed in to the wind for me while I go up next the mast and raise the main. See that house over there on that island? Just keep the wind in your face and the boat pointed at that…” I’m up on the top of the boat raising the main, trying to keep it out of the lazy jacks and wondering why the wind is now coming from the port side. “Sweetie…could you please turn back left so that we are pointed at that house I mentioned? It will make my job here a lot easier….”

Any way…we had a fantastic time!!! <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/circle.gif" alt="" /> The best sail we did was to Anegada and that really was no problem. We did go in June since I knew the winds/seas would be easier to work with and we took it easy the whole way. Liked enough to have already planned our next trip on a much bigger cat with two other couples.

Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: jboothe] #30951
12/30/2014 11:04 AM
12/30/2014 11:04 AM
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 5,718
Massachusetts
maytrix Offline
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maytrix  Offline
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Posts: 5,718
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Quote
jboothe said:The only issues we had was trying to get the boat out of the slip at Sunsail where it was wedged between a large mono, a cat and pylons with the dinghy in between all of it. I think the staff there thought we had everything under control and didn’t offer much assistance but we managed and we didn’t break anything.


They are happy to help, all you have to do is ask. Our last trip, we were in a slip that was wide enough for 3 cats. The space between us and the other cat was empty. Not too long before we were going to leave, they docked a cat right next to us. It was tight so I had them pull it out just far enough that I didn't have to worry about anything.

Releasing the dinghy when someone goes overboard is a new one. Haven't considered that either - if they are conscious then that might work pretty well. Wouldn't work on a cat though if you raise the dinghy up as we always do.


Matt
Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: maytrix] #30952
12/30/2014 11:14 AM
12/30/2014 11:14 AM
Joined: Feb 2014
Posts: 252
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jboothe Offline
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Quote
maytrix said:
They are happy to help, all you have to do is ask. Our last trip, we were in a slip that was wide enough for 3 cats. The space between us and the other cat was empty. Not too long before we were going to leave, they docked a cat right next to us. It was tight so I had them pull it out just far enough that I didn't have to worry about anything.


It was all good. Just the getting on an unfamiliar boat at an unfamiliar dock jitters. The Sunsail staff was great and we had no problems with them helping us in anyway. When we got ready to there were three guys giving us verbal encouragement. <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/Wink.gif" alt="" />

Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: maytrix] #30953
12/30/2014 11:19 AM
12/30/2014 11:19 AM
Joined: Feb 2014
Posts: 252
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jboothe Offline
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Quote
maytrix said:
Releasing the dinghy when someone goes overboard is a new one. Haven't considered that either - if they are conscious then that might work pretty well.


And yes if they are unconscious you have a lot more problems to consider. I just thought about being in the water and watching the boat slowly sailing away with my wife frantic. If she would just release that dinghy...

Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: jboothe] #30954
12/30/2014 11:29 AM
12/30/2014 11:29 AM
Joined: Oct 2012
Posts: 1,198
Cape Coral Florida (Texas tran...
stoneyusaf Offline
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stoneyusaf  Offline
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Cape Coral Florida (Texas tran...
I haven't been commenting on TTOL much recently so you may not know me... BUT...Stevo...NO ONE on here can advise you on whether a captain for a day is worth it (IMHO) because that is a personal comfort level choice. But, I want to directly answer your question with my take on it....you wrote "Would a check-out captain facilitate that kind of afternoon?" (comfort) The likely answer is "yes" it will help both of you with your comfort and confidence level and if you don't need help with your confidence level, it'll make you feel better because you made her feel better. After meeting my gal in early 2012 I mentioned my love of the BVI and she saw pics and such of my trips since 2003 and she said she wanted to go. I insisted she go through 101, 103 and 104 and I told her I would go through it with her. During the course of the week we hit some VERY NASTY weather in the Texas Gulf and the waves were the kind where you see land one minute and then you are surrounded by water (large waves) (then repeat). She did GREAT at the helm!! She did great at MOB. But days later she confessed that the course scared the hell out of her and I explained the odds of hitting that type of weather in the islands was little to none. I could see the stress in her face and I offered to get a powercat and the stress just released from her face. I am NOT suggesting a powercat but I am suggesting that whatever makes YOU and HER comfort level get to the highest level will ultimately make your trip more enjoyable. If nothing else, when she sees confirmation from another captain that "hey, Steve, you don't need me"...that alone may be where the mental switch is flipped.

As for whether it'll restrict your anchorage...again...not many on here can answer that as that will depend upon who you physically get as a captain and what he is going to allow for e.g. boat from Norman, Peter, drop him off at West End...etc. I personally like the suggestion above of dropping him off at West End...this would allow for one more practice session on the docking, etc...drop him off and then a short sail either to Norman, Cane Garden Bay or JVD.

One final note to those above...when did the "pendant" on the mooring ball become a "painter"?


https://www.tickerfactory.com/ezt/d/4;10765;405/st/20220331/e/USVI+and+BVI/dt/0/k/05ce/event.png
Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: stoneyusaf] #30955
12/30/2014 11:59 AM
12/30/2014 11:59 AM
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 130
sunbvi Offline
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sunbvi  Offline
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I doubt if practicing the MOB-maneuver belongs to the most important things when sailing.

Using the life lines in all situations the sea is not calm is much more important.

Beside this in my opinion life lines are one of the most important security things on board and much more important than most other stuff like life jackets etc. although many people don´t use the life lines.

If your are only two persons on board I can´t imagine almost any situation you need the MOB-maneuver.

Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: sunbvi] #30956
12/30/2014 12:09 PM
12/30/2014 12:09 PM
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 5,718
Massachusetts
maytrix Offline
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maytrix  Offline
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Quote
sunbvi said:If your are only two persons on board I can´t imagine almost any situation you need the MOB-maneuver.


You can't imagine needing it if someone was to go overboard? <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/Wink.gif" alt="" /> It would be foolish to assume no one will ever go over and have one person able to handle the boat and the other not be capable.

Better to stay on board, but I tend to think in most situations where someone went over, their plan wasn't to go over.


Matt
Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: maytrix] #30957
12/30/2014 12:36 PM
12/30/2014 12:36 PM
Joined: Oct 2012
Posts: 1,198
Cape Coral Florida (Texas tran...
stoneyusaf Offline
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Cape Coral Florida (Texas tran...
Quote
maytrix said:
Quote
sunbvi said:If your are only two persons on board I can´t imagine almost any situation you need the MOB-maneuver.


You can't imagine needing it if someone was to go overboard? <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/Wink.gif" alt="" /> It would be foolish to assume no one will ever go over and have one person able to handle the boat and the other not be capable.

Better to stay on board, but I tend to think in most situations where someone went over, their plan wasn't to go over.


"If your are only two persons on board I can´t imagine almost any situation you need the MOB-maneuver" This is a true statement if you do not care about the person with you on board....if you don't care for the other person.....at least throw then a PFD, grab a cold one and toast them as they float off to God knows where and get to the nearest beach bar so you can share the experience and your reasons why MOB drills are so over-rated. However, if you do care about your ship mate, MOB drills may actually come in handy....just saying... <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/duh.gif" alt="" /> <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/jester.gif" alt="" />


https://www.tickerfactory.com/ezt/d/4;10765;405/st/20220331/e/USVI+and+BVI/dt/0/k/05ce/event.png
Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: stoneyusaf] #30958
12/30/2014 01:05 PM
12/30/2014 01:05 PM
Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 10,213
GJ, CO S/V Long Overdue
sail2wind Offline
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Posts: 10,213
GJ, CO S/V Long Overdue
I would not rely on lifelines.Never put a harness solely on a lifeline, use a stanchion. MOB is very important.

Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: sail2wind] #30959
12/30/2014 01:59 PM
12/30/2014 01:59 PM
Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 133
NB, Canada
Call_me_Ishmael Offline
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If the weather is ever bad enough to need harnesses, I've always rigged jacklines attached to cleats or solid attachment points. I've seen ppl use harnesses in flat calm weather, or not until going on deck in 40knot winds. YMMV depending on comfort level, but I'd never trust a lifeline to hold me onboard. Stanchions are fine too, but mobility is a bit restricted that way IMHO. Actually I'm wary of using the lifelines to hold onto when moving around using "one hand for the ship" too, but that's probably a comment on the quality of my lifelines!

I used to laugh about practicing MOB, too, but there's going to come a time when you were glad you did it. I remember trying out our lifesling one day on a lark, and then ended up using it 2 days later to rescue a badly injured person in a dangerous situation. Sunbvi's comment about not needing MOB is, I think, losing something in translation since his IP address is from Germany.

IMHO at least 2 ppl on board should at least know how to start/stop the engine, steer the boat, and have some idea how to drop the sails just in case of emergency.

Everyone's going to have their own opinion about outside captains based on their own comfort level, but I'd do it if you or your partner is even slightly nervous. Being nervous or scared is no way to go through your vacation. Also, anywhere you can get to on your first day will be no problem for your captain to wangle a ride home from.

Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: Call_me_Ishmael] #30960
12/30/2014 02:51 PM
12/30/2014 02:51 PM
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jboothe Offline
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I 100% agree about doing MOB drills with experienced crew. I also understand what it is like to sail singlehanded or with people with no sailing experience (basically singlehand like I used to do with my kids). MOB drills in this case just aren't an option but you should teach them to do something. Throw flotation devices, use the radio, start the engine, get the boat stopped, slowed or at least heave to.

And if you really are the only one on the boat and the weather requires it or if you have to go up front, you should be tethered to the boat.

Last edited by jboothe; 12/30/2014 02:52 PM.
Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: jboothe] #30961
12/30/2014 06:19 PM
12/30/2014 06:19 PM
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I guess there are some more explanations necessary to understand what I were going to say :-)

Assuming the following situations:

a) If you are two persons on board and one goes overboard and the person in the water is unconscious and the sea is rough you will almost have no chance to bring the unconscious person alone on board again. If you are very good/experienced you might will have a little chance to "fix" the person nearby the boat without hurting him/her but what is extremely difficult. In this case you could hope other helping people arrive at your boat early enough.

b) If the person is not unconscious and not seriously injured the better strategy could be to bring the boat near the person and let him/her swim the remaining distance to the boat and let him/her go on board by the swimming ladder.

c) If the sea is calm and the person is unconscious you will have a chance to fix the person nearby the boat without hitting/injuring him/her.

Because the chance to survive in situation a) is extremely bad the only thing which makes sense in rough conditions (with only two persons on board) will be to do everything that nobody can go overboard. This is in my opinion much more important than to practice the professional MOB-maneuver (except you have a catamaran e.g. where the person maybe can be fixed between the hulls without hitting the person with the boat).

For situation b) you don´t need a professional MOB-maneuver.

In situation c) a good strategy could be to go backwards to the person to be rescued meaning you need no professional MOB-maneuver in the manner we are probably talking about. Beside this: The situation c) will be a extremely rare event (going overboard in calm conditions and being unconscious). I almost cannot imagine any situation (in warm water like in the BVIs).

The conclusion of this could be that it is better to always use life lines on the sea (especially when there are only two persons on board or they are not very experienced sailors) than teaching a „never sailed person“ one or two times the professional MOB-maneuver.

I hope this explains better what I was going to say in my posting before :-)

Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: sunbvi] #30962
12/30/2014 07:28 PM
12/30/2014 07:28 PM
Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 10,213
GJ, CO S/V Long Overdue
sail2wind Offline
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I don't even know where to start with this post. Use the lifelines in what way? What is a "professional" MOB maneuver? If someone goes over and I can reach them, I will get them aboard and I am not a big strong guy. I would use a winch, outhaul, topping lift, or any means available to bring the MOB onboard.

Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: sail2wind] #30963
12/30/2014 08:00 PM
12/30/2014 08:00 PM
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sunbvi Offline
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Hi sail2wind,

seems like you don´t like my posting :-)

In our sailing educations there are strong requirements for the MOB-maneuver to pass the examination. Heading exactly against the wind, having the correct speed when you reach the person over board and having the propeller stopped early enough. We have to do the maneuver both with engine and also under sails without any use of the engine. Sorry for not saying that.

Such a MOB-maneuver can be very challenging especially in rough sea.

Have you ever tried to get a unconscious person on board? In reality this is not as easy as it looks like and there are so many cases published where this wasn´t successful and the person died especially in cold water when you run against the time.

Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: sunbvi] #30964
12/30/2014 08:38 PM
12/30/2014 08:38 PM
Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 10,213
GJ, CO S/V Long Overdue
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this is not the north sea, it's the BVI

Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: sunbvi] #30965
12/30/2014 08:57 PM
12/30/2014 08:57 PM
Joined: Dec 2013
Posts: 221
Massachusetts USA
tmsxmsails Offline
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What we have here, I think, is a failure to communicate.

When sunbvi says "lifelines", I"m assuming he means a safety harness and a line hooked to something - not the lifelines that run through the stanchions around the gunwales.

Sunbvi, yes, you are right, it's better to not fall off but if someone does, what do you do? I don't think anyone is suggesting that prepping a non-sailor for MOB involves days of book learning and rigorous tests in all conditions but you've got to give them *something* in case it happens. If all they remember is "throw a seat cushion over the side", it still might save a life.

In bad conditions and/or an unconscious MOB, yes, it will be difficult to get them on board but you are certainly not going to give up are you?

Tom

Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: tmsxmsails] #30966
12/30/2014 09:06 PM
12/30/2014 09:06 PM
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 5,718
Massachusetts
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Yes, lets not forget this is a BVI forum and the "captains" we're talking about are not preparing for a license. This all got started by the OP saying he's the sailor and his girlfriend is not experienced.

So I think in a case like this 1) he should make sure he doesn't put himself in a situation to fall off, but 2) plan for the worst case and make sure the girlfriend know's how to start the engine, turn the boat and in that very worst case scenario knows to just bring the boat down wind of the MOB and come back up wind to pick them up - just forget about the sails at that point..

My wife might not do the MOB procedure in a way to pass, but she would get back to me so I could get on the boat. I think she'd also figure out a way to get me on board if I was unconscious too - might not be pretty, but effective smile

Hopefully we haven't scared the OP off.. <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/Grin.gif" alt="" /> This really isn't anything to worry about - just something one should always be prepared for when on a boat. In all my years sailing (30+), only time I've ever gone overboard has been on a hobie cat when we've flipped..


Matt
Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: jphart] #30967
12/30/2014 09:18 PM
12/30/2014 09:18 PM
Joined: Dec 2013
Posts: 221
Massachusetts USA
tmsxmsails Offline
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Here's my funny story about picking up a mooring with a rookie "admiral". We had chartered before but we'd either been with my parents or with our kids in a flotilla but this was our first time with just us two.

As we were motoring toward the mooring field, I went over the process again to make sure it was clear. I made sure to tell her that missing the ball was no big deal and we would just come around again. I set the bowline up so that it was all ready for her to put it through the loop and cleat off once she snagged the loop. I put her right on the ball and after a few seconds, she snagged the loop and slooowly brought it up to the deck. Well, it was blowing pretty hard and we started to drift back. As she hesitated, we drifted back more and I could tell we weren't going to make it. I guess I forgot to make it clear that she would not be able to hold the boat with just the hook in the loop. I yelled up to her to drop the loop but by that time, there was too much tension on it and the hook was pulled out of her hand. At least she didn't go overboard.

So there is our boat hook (mercifully) floating downwind. Crap! we are going to need that the rest of the week. I told her to come back and get on the swim platform and motored around to try and pick it up. I made a couple of passes but I couldn't get her close enough to snag it. I finally pulled the dinghy up and had her get in. I then towed her around like a kid on an inner tube and, after another miss, she snagged it.

Like the trooper she is, she went back up on the bow and snagged the ball the very next time. She's a pro now.

Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: tmsxmsails] #30968
12/30/2014 11:23 PM
12/30/2014 11:23 PM
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Posts: 1,173
JAX
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Have seen several dropped boat hooks.
One admiral with a somewhat controlled ker-splash! She came up laughing, swam to the sugar scoop, and got it fine on the second try.

Stoney...of course you are correct. Pendant. Though sometimes it is just a gallon milk jug. <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/Kiss.gif" alt="" />


JPH
I spent my money on booze, broads, and boats...the rest I wasted.
Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: stevo34] #30969
12/31/2014 07:15 AM
12/31/2014 07:15 AM
Joined: Jan 2007
Posts: 1,251
Saint Thomas, USVI
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Quote
stevo34 said:
Hi all,

Myself and my girlfriend are planning our first trip to the BVIs at the beginning of February, chartering a 34 foot monohull with BVIYC. I’ve been an avid reader of the TTOL forum over the past few months and it’s been a great source of advice and inspiration!

I have a question that I’m hoping to get some opinions on. My girlfriend is a relative newcomer to sailing (she has her ASA101 and has sailed as crew on friends’ boats). While I'm confident in handling the boat short-handed, I’m thinking about hiring a skipper on the first afternoon to make it more relaxing for both of us. Mainly I’m hoping to have a reassuring voice and an extra pair of hands while we practice our routine for picking up a mooring ball, anchoring etc. Would a check-out captain facilitate that kind of afternoon?

A related question is whether hiring a skipper would restrict us on the first night’s anchorage? We’re chartering out of Road Town (with a sleep aboard the night before), and had initially thought we might spend our first night at the Bight on Norman. But I guess that if we want to also practice some boat handling and the skipper needs to be able to get home, this might restrict us to staying nearer the charter base?

cheers
Steve


I'm going to put my two cents in and ignore the derailment of this thread.

In my experience, which now totals seven years in the bareboat business, I have to say a large number of our charter guests would benefit from a skipper for a half or full day. That's not to say they aren't qualified it just that a lot of people go for long periods of time with out sailing. The day of having someone on board to bring you and your crew up to speed will pay dividends in a better trip with less stress. Add in the intangibles like local knowledge, knowledge of the new to you vessel will improve the quality of your trip. Also given the inexperience and apprehension of your spouse making her feel more comfortable will also be a huge bonus.

Think of it like reefing, if you think you need to reef it's probably to late. if you think you might need or want a skipper for a day you probably do.

Enjoy your trip, hire a skipper for the day. I have never had a guest that used a skipper for a day or two come back and say that was a waste of time. They almost always agree after the fact that it was a better trip because of it.
Jay

Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: CaptainJay] #30970
12/31/2014 09:25 AM
12/31/2014 09:25 AM
Joined: Dec 2014
Posts: 2
NY
S
stevo34 Offline OP
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NY
hi all,

thanks for the fantastic advice! Lots to think about.

I think Jay summarized it well... it's a bit like reefing, we could probably not do it and be ok, but then I'd rather keep everything happy and relaxed... this is meant to be a holiday after all smile

As for the first night stop - for our rough itinerary I'd prefer to be at Norman so it's good to know that's not out of the question. But West End or Marina Cay would be fine too. Next step - email the guys at BVIYC and see what's possible. Thanks all!

Steve

Re: hire a captain first afternoon? [Re: tmsxmsails] #30971
01/01/2015 02:49 PM
01/01/2015 02:49 PM
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 130
sunbvi Offline
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Quote
tmsxmsails said:
When sunbvi says "lifelines", I"m assuming he means a safety harness and a line hooked to something - not the lifelines that run through the stanchions around the gunwales.

Yes, Tom, you are completely right. I am sorry for that. I wasn´t aware that lifeline has another meaning in english. In future I will try to write more carefully :-)

Thanks for this explanation and Happy New Year to all :-)

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