Raft up in the Sounds
Whether on land or water it’s always nice to have a bit of a social life, which is why rafting up is so much fun for adults and kids alike. Here are some great tips from Boating Magazine for rafting up the right way.
The Heaviest Boat Sets the Anchor
This is not necessarily the longest boat. The heaviest boat should have the biggest, heaviest anchor. When tying up to other boats, use dock lines rated for the biggest boat in the gathering.
Once the host vessel is in position, deploy fenders and come abeam of it. Heave the bow and stern lines to the other crew. If you can’t do this, approach the bow at a 45-degree angle and toss the bowline, and allow your boat to settle gently back beside the host by using the wind or current.
Get In Order
If more than two boats are rafting up, the anchored boat should remain in the middle.
When possible, try to get the sterns of the boats to line up so people can pass from vessel to vessel on the swim platforms. This is safer and more practical than climbing across gunwales or over bow rails. Use spring lines to adjust fore and aft position relative to the host vessel.
Use plenty of fenders (only cars have bumpers) and make sure they’re big enough to keep the rafted boats from crunching. Using fenders is easier if boats with similar freeboard are tied next to each other, so consider that when organising a raft-up.
Be aware of the swinging room your raft would need should wind or current direction change.
Snaps of Summer Entry “Raft up in Ships Cove” by Viki Moore.