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VI Victoria 2018 - Intermediate Marine Weather w/ Scott Crawshaw
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VI Victoria 2018 - Intermediate Marine Weather w/ Scott Crawshaw

Forecasting weather conditions are major aspects of cruising under sail and power. This intermediate course, which begins with the ½ day Basic Marine Weather, is aimed at the cruiser who aspires to head offshore. Building on the lessons learned, the next 1 ½ days focus on Anti-Cyclones; Swell & Sea Waves; Surface Water Circulation; Upper Air Charts & Satellite Imagery; Gap & Promontory Winds; Tropical & Sub-Tropical Weather; Tropical Cyclone Formation & Avoidance; and Voyage Planning.

2018-04-14 to 2018-04-15
When: Sat April 14 - Sun April 15, 2018
Where: Poplar Room, Saanich Fair Grounds
1528 Stellys X Rd
Saanichton, British Columbia  V8M 1S8
Contact: Lionel Dobson

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Purpose and Benefit:
Forecasting and withstanding weather conditions are major aspects of cruising under sail and power, whether riding it out offshore, seeking safety in a protected anchorage, or avoiding being too close to a lee shore. 


This two day workshop begins with the fundamentals of weather (see Basic Weather Forecasting) and shows how weather satellites and technology have transformed forecasting to show cruisers the best way to combine their own observations with technology. Participants will learn relevant information that will ensure their enjoyment and safety at sea in both foul and fair weather. 


BONUS:  This course also includes practical exercises, including a virtual Victoria to Maui transit where students will plot their positions, review weather products and determine the best tactics / weather routing.


Course Topics:


o   Cold / Warm Core

o   Associated Weather

o   Ridge / Col

o   Blocking High

o   Sailing Strategy

 Swell and Sea Waves

o   Period, Amplitude, Wavelength, Steepness, Fetch

o   Coastal, Wind, Tide and Current Affects

o   Surge

o   Tsunamis

o   Interpreting Wave Data on a Chart

o   Manoeuvring in Large Waves

  Surface Water Circulation

o   Set and Drift

o   Upwelling

o   Permanent and Seasonal Currents

o   Effects of Current on Climate

o   ENSO

Upper Air Charts and Satellite Imagery

o   Isoheights

o   Vortices

o   Effect on Surface Weather (Upper Air Support)

o   Wind Shear

o   Types of Satellites (Orbits, Wavelength)

Gaps and Promontory Winds

o   Land and Sea Breezes

o   Anabatic / Katabatic Winds

o   Pressure Effects on Gaps and Promontories

o   Gulf of Tehuantepec

Tropical and Sub-Tropical Weather

o   Doldrums, ITCZ, Trade Winds, Westerlies / Easterlies

o   Monsoons

o   Tropical Waves

o   Squalls and Thunderstorms (Formation, Associated Clouds and Conditions)

Tropical Cyclone Formation and Avoidance

o   Terms (Path, Eye, Trough Line, Semi-Circles)

o   Seasons and Distribution

o   Warnings (Radio, Swell, Sky, Changes to Wind Strength / Direction and Pressure)

o   Associated Weather

o   Rules for Avoidance

Voyage Planning

o   Pilot Charts (Wind / Current Rose)

o   Onboard Observations WRT Relative Position to Oncoming Weather

o   Onboard Weather Products (PACTOR products, GRIB)

o   Virtual Vic-Maui

Scott Crawshaw has sailed for over 40 years and has over 50,000 miles of ocean water experience.  This includes skippering the Royal Canadian Navy’s Tall Ship, HMCS Oriole and four years of offshore sailing with his family aboard the sailing vessel Peregrinata.  His qualifications include a Transport Canada Master Mariner, unlimited tonnage; a Navy Surface Command Qualification, unlimited tonnage; an ISPA instructor qualification and is a CYA Yachtmaster.

He has sailed extensively in the Pacific, twice to Australia and five times to and from Hawaii.  He has participated in a number of international yacht races including four Victoria to Maui International Yacht Races where he was the winning skipper of the 2000 race and is the corrected time record holder.  In addition, he has competed in numerous Swiftsure races and a Van-Isle 360.  From 2002-2006 he cruised with his wife and two daughters down the coast of the Americas and across the South Pacific, including the Galapagos, to Australia.

Scott has been in the Royal Canadian Navy since 1979 and has extensive instructor experience in all navigation topics from basic to advanced.  He specialised in navigation and shiphandling and was the Navy’s Senior Navigation Instructor in 1989-1991 and again from 2006-2011.  In addition to HMCS Oriole he has commanded two of the RCN’s Maritime Coastal Defence Vessels, HMC Ships Whitehorse and Yellowknife and has extensive experience skippering the Orca class training vessels.

Scott has a degree in Physics and Physical Oceanography from Royal Roads Military College.  He currently lives in the UK, with his wife Sonia, where he is filling an exchange position with the Royal Navy until summer 2018.

Cost (includes Basic Marine Weather):

BCA members - $200
Non-members - $240


There is a $15 processing fee in the event of participant cancellation.

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