upwind sailing???

Thread starter #1
I sort off new to the sailing world! I just purchased a sunfish alcort ( any thought on the boat if it good or not) but anyway I have a question that sounds really dumb and it's how do you sail upwind. Now I have been thinking about this a lot so if the wind is blowing and I'm trying to go up wind do I go on a little angle so the wind catches my sail or is there another way to do it?

Thanks for all the help on here
-Kelly Nowaczyk
Sail appx 45 deg off from straight into the wind for a while. Make a 90 deg turn across the wind, repeat.

Called "Tacking"

You can't go straight into the wind without a motor.

A little help... tie a float of some sort on appx 15 ft of line and drag it behind the boat. It will give a hint as to if you are actually getting anywhere in light winds.

When preparing to make the 90 deg turn, LOOK 90 deg in the direction you will be turning and pick a landmark.
Turn the rudder, duck under the boom and steer just a bit further than the chosen landmark
Then as the boat regains up speed turn back to point at the landmark.
As you gain practice tacking you'll need less of that excess turn.

You can make the angle wider than 45 off from straight into the wind... adjust the landmark. If you are tacking at 60 to the wind you need to look at 120 deg. Its easier to make the boat move, but slower progress the way you are trying to go.


Active Member
Sail with someone experienced

It's more fun with other people

And a wild pack of Sunfishers scares the power boaters right off the lake :)