How do you enter a box with a sailing yacht?
One of the most difficult ways to moor is to enter a box in a harbor. Once you are in the box, you are assured of a peaceful night’s sleep!
There are a number of dangers when mooring in a box:
– the box is too narrow or too short
– the wind is at right angles to the box
Before sailing into a box, it is wise to ask the harbor master whether the box is large enough. In general, the harbor master allocates a box and everything should go well. If you have any doubts about your steering skills, indicate this to the harbor master so that he can allocate a wider box!
A box needs 4 mooring lines, so make sure that all 4 mooring lines are ready on the deck. The rear 2 mooring lines can already be laid out in a loop and then along the frog. Then the helmsman can hold and secure the hinterland ropes himself if necessary.
Fenders can be prepared, but never hang these overboard! If the hull goes close to a pole, the fender will hang behind it, causing the boat to rotate in the box with serious consequences. Attach the fenders to the railing wire, but place them in the gangway so that you can easily and quickly kick them overboard if necessary.
Determine in advance where the wind comes from in relation to the box, and coordinate this with the crew. Focus only on the main mooring lines. Especially with half wind, the 2 windward mooring lines (where the wind comes from) are the most important.
If there is a helmsman and 1 crew member, then calmly sail into the box, and have the crew member lay the main hinterland rope around the post from the center of the ship. Then the crew member walks forward to the pulpit.
The helmsman sails calmly on, and as soon as the ship is stationary he can tighten the hinterland rope and place it around the frog. Do not focus too much on the hinterland, but first steer the boat calmly into the box and brake it on the engine. Only when the ship is stationary is the hinterland tightened. The other hinterland rope can be thrown onto the post with a nice throw, or the foreshore rope can be paid out so that the ship goes back a bit. Because the 2 most necessary mooring lines have already been secured, there is plenty of time to make this happen.
Common mistakes when entering a box:
– sailing too fast;
– no preparation;
– fenders hang outboard;
If you have any doubts about your own abilities, then hire a skipper. Join Happy Sailing to master mooring in a few hours!
Bart Kamphuis has made a nice video of this theory below: