More about Heaving-to in a sailboat

This is an add on to the last post we did on heaving to. I was looking over our Storm Tactics online sailing course and found this image we created which best shows a boat in a heave-to situation in a storm.

Sailboat in a storm in a heave-to position

Sailboat in a storm in a heave-to position

They say a pic is worth a thousand words so with this blog combined with the last one I think we can leave it at that. A few things to note however. Here we’re using a storm staysail and main trysail to reduce loads on the rig. The trysail is not lashed to the boom but rather is controlled by a rigged trysail sheet from the clew of the trysail. This is done because the main sail is usually lashed to the boom and there are no connection points for the trysail. Also the boom can be held fast by the main sheet to stop it slashing around in the strong winds. The trysail can be let in or out to control how the boat moves and reacts with the wind.

Take the sailing basics course and NauticEd Storm Tactics online sailing course and learn from Captain Ed Mapes how he has dealt with some big storms over his 100,000 mile sailing career. You’ll learn plenty more like how to fore-reach the waves, how to rig a drogue, how to prepare your boat, etc etc.


My vision for NauticEd is to provide the highest quality sailing and boating education available - and deliver competence wherever sailors live and go.
Grant Headifen
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Last updated on July 8th, 2022