THE MANAGEMENT of a canoe in paddling requires no special remark. A little trial will show how the craft is to be turned and manoeuvred, brought alongside a landing etc. The chief thing to remember is that a canoe can not be rapidly turned in her length like a sculling boat, but that a circle must be described. However by patient backing and paddling a canoe can be got round in her length which may be required in a narrow stream or canal. Remember to utilize the stream in turning, e.g. if proceeding with the stream, put her head into the slack water near the bank, and the stream will turn the canoe of itself, and vice versa.


In a strong current remember to steer well above any fixed object you wish to cross, as a rock, buoy, vessel at anchor, etc. Vessels, etc. adrift, or under way may be considered as in still water, being borne by the same current with the canoe. In paddling against a current, avail yourself of every slack and eddy. These will be found in shore, on the side towards which the next bend turns.


T46A canoe can make use of these better than a row-boat, because she can keep so close to the bank, provided of course there is sufficient water.

Paddling among waves is probably the "strong suit" of a canoe. In many things boats of double her size or so can beat her, but at this she is unequalled. The forward position enables the paddler to see each "form of water" as it approaches, and to deal with it accordingly, and he can balance the boat by his body, and paddle to neutralise any tendency to upset.

The chief thing is to have the well securely battened down, to have a long paddle with blades of moderate width, and to understand the management of craft among waves. To batten down completely, in addition to the hatches and covers, a short coat of mackintosh or very thin oil-skin should be used. The skirt of it should fit round ledges on the coamings and hatch-covers with an indiarubber cord, and be so cut and fitted that the cloth sets as fair as possible forming, as Mr. Baden Powell says in his Book on "Canoe Travelling" (1871) "a kind of tent, of which the captain's body is the pole." The front should open as little way as possible just to let the head through, the lower part being sewn up. The wrists should fit tightly to keep out water. An indiarubber band will do this. To put it on, get the sleeves on first, then take the coat in both bands, rolling it up till it forms a huge ring. Then quickly lift it over head and it is on, without losing sight of the course, etc. for more than a second. To put it on in any other way is unsafe, as some difficulty may arise while you are blinded and entangled by the coat.


If properly fitted it will keep out every drop of water, and at the same time readily come away in case of an upset, or if a sudden jump up or out is necessary.

One should also understand the management of craft among waves, towards which end a few suggestions may be of some little use.

In meeting a dangerous looking wave, put the boat's bow fairly into it, and do not allow it to catch her on one side. Do not force her ahead too much in meeting such a wave but let her be ready to yield to its force. At the same time do not stop the boat for every wave you meet but keep her going boldly, not minding a little white water on deck. Try to judge the waves thus -- "There is a big one to windward, thin at the top, with a light streak or two of foam - Look out! - but no - it is broken already, and reaches the boat in a mere harmless patch of tumbling foam. Here is another big one - never mind him - he's too round to break. Now - a steep square-looking customer, he is timed to break just at the moment he will meet you. Up with her into it ! That's the way : and now the wave is broken and the cataract of white water is astern instead of being on the top of you." But no words can fully teach the art of dealing with waves. The only thing is to try gradually to acquire it, beginning with moderately rough water, within reach of help and shelter, and soon it will be easy, and one of the most exhilarating forms of canoeing will have been mastered.

Now for sailing: we will suppose you have everything properly rigged and fitted, and on board.


To Set Sail. -

Unjoint the paddle and stow half below, keeping the other half on deck, where it should be secured by a loop of cord or indiarubber. Get your mast on deck, heel forwards. Unroll the halliards, etc., from mast. Push the heel of mast into its trunk or tabernacle. Fit the collar of forestay over masthead, ship your flagstaff in the hole provided for it in masthead, set up the stay, and there's your mast. Lead the halliards, etc., through their screw-eyes and knot the ends. Now get up your sail, toggle on the tack, halliard and topping lifts, haul forward by the tack and halliard, seeing that the sail goes between mast and jackstay. Secure the sheet. Set taut the topping lifts and hoist away. The mizen may be set first if head to wind. All its gear should be kept on it except the sheet, which should remain on deck, both ends within reach of hand. Toggle the sheet to the boom and step the mast by hand. If the mainsail has been stowed with its mast you have only to follow the instructions for setting up mast, the mainsail going with it.


To Take in Sail. -

The method of taking a lug mainsail off the mast has been previously described. To take in mast and all : lower sail; lower mast there nearly down; take a bit of line and tie it round mast, halliards, topping lifts, and all. This keeps all clear for setting again. Take the lines off the cleats, arid unreeve from the screw-eyes. Lower right down, unship flagstaff and stay, pull the mast aft, roll all together and stow below.

For a gunter mainsail, top boom up to mast and proceed as for lug. The tie, however, round mast will not be needed.

To take in a lug mizen, lower sail, ease sheet, tie the lifts, etc., to mast as above, unstep mast, untoggle sheet, roll all up together and stow. For sprit mizen and other similar ones, brail up, unstep mast, and so on. The more neatly these things are put away the better they will go up again. An oilskin cover should be provided for the sails, which will keep them dry and clean. If made like a bag for a third of its length, the rest to tie with points, it will be most convenient. If you stow both sails together, one bag, if separately, have two, one for each side of the boat. All this making and taking in of sail may be done at anchor or adrift, or on shore for all that matters.


To Shift Sail. -

Take in one sail according to the above directions, and set the other. Sometimes a mizen has to be set forwards by stepping the mizen mast in a step near the main step. Have a it sheet bent on (do not unreeve the proper mizen sheet), and the brails, halliards, etc., rove to lead aft. Then go forward and make quick work, being careful not to go more on deck than necessary. If in rough water, first lower mainsail and let her lie head to wind, with fore centre-board down. Then shift mizens as quickly as may be. Then get the big mizen forward as mainsail. A canoe will lie very close thus, but will go astern very fast, so keep the mizen drawing as much as you can, by putting the helm up. Some canoes will even sail under mizen, the windage of mast forward being enough to balance it, of course with the help of the rudder.


To Reef. -

With reefing gear. Top up the boom about a foot, cast off halliard, and haul upon reef line, easing down halliard as the reef comes in. Make fast reef-line, set taut halliard, ease lifts, and the reef is in.

Without the gear. Set up lifts. Ease halliard and haul down reef pennant. Luff up and tie after reef point first, then the others. On a wind this takes very little longer than reefing with gear, and off the wind the boat will sail very fairly for a while without tying the points, if the lifts are kept taut. Off the wind, if it blows too hard to haul the boom in for tying to points, and by reason of sea or otherwise it is not desired to luff up, lower the sail nearly down, haul aft sheet and tie points.


To Take Out Reefs.-

Let go reef points, pennant or gear, and hoist out the reef by the halliard.


Sailing by the wind. -

There is an immense difference in the behaviour of canoes on this point of sailing, but rig and trim do much to determine it, and to these the greatest possible attention must be given. A canoe should be so sparred and sailed that with fore-centre-board only in a light steady breeze she carries an easy weather helm, and, on the helm being released, comes quickly to the wind. If her weather helm is excessive, it is easy to reduce after sail or to move the mizen inboard a little; if she carries lee-helm, a larger mizen, or further aft, or more leech to mainsail is required. With more wind, the canoe, as all properly designed boats, will carry more weather helm, which may be moderated by lowering the after centre-board. If there is no after centre-board, the mizen must be reefed. But the after centre-board is very useful. For example, in sailing on a wind, if this centre-board is lowered, and the mizen sheet eased a trifle the boat will steer herself admirably, luffing a little when the wind increases and falling off to her course when it lulls.

It must be remembered that the flat-setting battened sails will lie closer to the wind than any boat will sail, so that the shaking of the sail is no guide to steering:, and the boat must be kept away a trifle beyond the point at which the sails will "sleep", to give her strong way through the water. If in still water the boat makes her course on one tack at right angles to that on the other, she is looking well to windward. This is 4 points from the wind, but in light airs a well rigged canoe will look up to 3 points but would make very little way. Such a course would only be worth steering for a few yards, to weather an obstacle, etc.

I do not think that skill in sailing any craft to windward can be learnt from books, so I shall omit most of the instructions on the subject generally given in works on Sailing, only reminding beginners that every change in the wind's force or direction should be followed, keeping away if the wind draws ahead, and luffing if it frees, luffing also to each little puff, so as to shoot to windward while relieving the boat from undue pressure, but always keeping good way on her.

As sailing a canoe in a strong wind is a little different from boat sailing, I may make a few a remarks on that part of the subject. In the first place the canoe should carry no more sail than in the true strength of the wind she can bear without putting her gunwale under. In luffing to squalls the boat's way gets so much deadened that it is better to ease the sheet a trifle than to luff too long or too close. If the boat gets so knocked down that her sheet cannot it be let go without the sail going in the water, the canoeist will have to exert some activity to avoid a capsize. The helm will probably be useless, so leave it and sit on the weather coamings, which helps the boat to right, and is a good position for getting out if she goes over. From this position, raise after centre-board if lowered, let go main halliards, top the boom up all you can, or do as many of these things as you have time for. It is in this sort of weather that the main and mizen rig conspicuously beats a single sail. Say that a squall comes down on a sudden like the blast from the mouth of a gun, with the 2-sail rig the mainsheet can be "flown" and the mizen will keep way on her and enable her to luff, the windage of mainmast and sail being sufficient to keep her head from coming right into the wind. With one sail, on the contrary, if the sheet is let fly, the boat, as soon as she loses way, will pay off and fill the sail, and if the squall lasts a minute nothing but a brisk use of the downhaul will keep her masthead from making acquaintance with the water. No doubt a skillful boat-sailer can manage generally to relieve the sail sufficiently without losing way, but it undeniably takes a skilful hand to do it.


Sailing by the Wind in a Sea. -

The Canoe must be judiciously canvassed, about a reef more being taken in than for the same wind in smooth water. The seas must be met something as in paddling, luffing the boat to meet the vicious ones, but never letting her come actually head to wind. The boat's way is somewhat deadened by luffing, so that she meets the sea with less force, and at the same time her head is turned towards it. The moment she has met the sea, up with the helm and gather way again, so she will drop slantingly down the back of the wave, and not shoot her bow into the base of the next one. The chief danger is of getting a sea into the sail - if you have been too late in preparing to meet a wave, and see that it will break right on the bow, hold on to the last moment, then let the sheet go by the run and throw all your weight to windward, but if this is done a second too soon it will make matters worse, and she will either be upset or perhaps smashed. In any case there will be a regular smother for a second or two, but if everything goes well, you will come out of it right side up with an increased feeling of respect for seas.


To Tack a Canoe. -

Some canoes tack very freely, especially heavy ballasted canoes that carry good way in stays. Some of these hardly can miss stays in a true wind and smooth water. Longer canoes stay less rapidly and certainly than short ones, as they cannot turn so fast, and their way is expended before they are round.

If the canoe is very handy, all you have to do is to get good way on her, with after centreboard up, and mizen well flattened in. She should then carry a strong weather helm. Ease the helm down, and she will fly up in the wind, putting it gradually harder over till she pays off . As she passes head to wind, lower the after centre-board, if you want it.

If you can get the canoe to fly up head to wind of herself, rapidly, and can keep the rudder in reserve for paying her off, she is sure to stay well. She must be made to do this by altering her sails, trim, etc., and do not be satisfied till she is doing her best.

In light airs one can help the boat by one's weight a great deal, leaning a little to leeward as the helm is put down, and changing sides as she passes head to wind.


Missing Stays. -

If the boat gets in irons - that is, comes up to the wind and refuses to fall off, hold the mainsail to windward, let fly the mizen sheet, lower the after centreboard, and, if necessary, even raise fore centreboard, shifting the helm as she gets stern way. Of course you will back her off on the tack you want, if possible; if not, then on the former tack, get way on her and try again. If cruising, it is better to bring her round with the paddle, then to waste time in trying to make her tack if does not come round at the first trial; but in racing, the boat must be made to tack. Some clubs allow back strokes of paddle in tacking, and if they are made in a sidelong fashion they may be made to turn the boat strongly, while retarding her very little.

In beating down stream, tack either in or out of the current, not on the "edge of the tide," otherwise the action of the water will counteract the movement of the boat from beginning to end of the manoeuvre. In beating up stream, the contrary is the case, and the difference in velocity of the current near the bank and outside helps turning, and may sometimes be seen to make the slowest boat come round like a top.

In very hard winds, under greatly reduced sail, a canoe can hardly be expected to stay without help. The same is the case in really rough water, in which a 'smooth' for tacking should be carefully watched for, specially avoiding the moment when a big wave is coming at you.

Often a canoe, which at first seems very slow and awkward in tacking, will gradually improve as her trim and rig are adjusted, and her handling properly understood, till at last she performs exceedingly well, sometimes even better than one which will stay fairly at the first trial. Therefore, I would say, never condemn a craft for being slow or slack in stays, till she has been tried with different rigs, different masting, trim, rudder, &c. Sometimes, too, a little adding to or taking off the heel, or forefoot, may make a slow stayer into a quick one.

Reaching in smooth water requires no special remarks. If squally, it is better to ease the sheet a bit than to be continually luffing for the puffs, and if the boom end then goes in the water, reef.

In broken water, on a reach, sail as straight as you can and it is wonderful how the worst seas seem to miss you, breaking before they meet you, or passing a length astern. But if you see one that means mischief, begin in good time and luff to it, or if you have the wind abaft the beam, keep her off dead before it. You will be guided in this as you seem to be getting to windward or leeward of your course.

About the wettest form of canoeing is sailing in the little sharp waves formed by a fresh breeze in narrow waters. They are too small to be dealt with separately, the only thing is to disregard them, and to keep as dry as possible, by battening down the well; and putting on waterproof coat.


Running Before the Wind. -

The boom should be well squared away, and if there is any rolling top it up a foot. Never let her sail "by the lee" except in very light winds for a short distance, and even then it retards her way. In a strong wind it makes the boat roll badly, even to a dangerous extent, but much depends on her form. Never let the head of the sail get forward of the mast. A well designed canoe will hardly run her bow under water in any breeze, but it any tendency to do so appears, shorten sail promptly. In jibing haul the boom amidships and let it go quickly but steadily as the sail comes over. If the wind is too heavy to jibe all standing, ease up the halliards, and haul the yard down partially by the downhaul, or better by the close-reef-line, jibe over and hoist again, the boom being well topped up during this manoeuvre. In strong winds the mizen should be taken in, especially in rough water, but in moderate weather it may be got to set on the opposite side to mainsail which is called "goosewinging it." In a seaway the waves make steering difficult before the wind, but an after centre-board almost wholly removes the difficulty, and does away with the use of drogues and such contrivances. It is on this point of sailing that the value of the topping lifts, downhaul, etc., is appreciated

Suppose you wanted to take the sail off her, or to reef, when before the wind, with sails in which these essential fittings had been "simplified" away, you would have to round to and come up in the wind, perhaps at great risk, and with almost the certainty of a ducking. With this gear, you have only to top your boom, lower the sail, haul it aboard, and deal with it at leisure. I am supposing the wind too fierce to allow of the boom being hauled aboard with all sail standing.


To Anchor a Canoe. -

The painter should be led through a hole in the stem, and both ends brought aft, in one of which there is a large thimble. Pass your "cable" through the thimble, overhaul a couple of fathoms of it, and bend the end to the ring of the anchor. Haul on the other end of painter, till the thimble runs out to the bow, and make fast. Drop your anchor over the side, and haul on the cable. You now have it under your bows, with the cable working through the thimble as through a hawsepipe. Luff up head to wind, and as soon as she begins to fall astern, let go your anchor and about 3-1/2 times as much cable as there is water. If there is any current, except it be with the wind, lower sails before letting go.


To Weigh Anchor. -

Get all ready, then heave short and get your sails set, if the tide will allow; then break out the anchor, run it up to the bow and sail her. Let go the painter, and your anchor will come aboard amidships. Wash it lend your cable; and put everything to rights. The cable should be of similar stuff to the painter, good plaited line as any kinking is fatal to the working of this method. The anchor should be from 2-1/2 to 3-1/2 lbs. weight, and as long, large and sharp as can be; a short dumpy, anchor is no good for small craft. It should stock and unstock with a screw. If on bad holding ground back the anchor with any weights you have few feet above it on the cable.

T55On rocky ground where there is danger of losing an anchor, make fast the cable to the head of the anchor where the arms meet the shank, and stop it to the ring with a bit of soft yarn, (A). If the anchor catches anything, the yarn will part when you heave on it, and the anchor come away in most cases. But it you know that you will have to anchor, as for fishing, on a rocky patch, you should have a big stone on board, well secured to a rope "becket," to use as an anchor.

When practicable, it is best to pick up a mooring instead of anchoring. Choose a small one of course; get hold of the buoy, keeping carefully head to tide, or it will be pulled out of your hands. Get in the buoy rope till you come to the mooring chain. If this is very light, make it fast to your painter and haul it to the bow, coil the buoy rope, and lash the buoy on deck, forward of the well; if heavy, ride to the buoy-rope instead. Never make fast to a floating buoy or to any vessel for more than one tide, and not then if you are not going to remain on board.


To Beach a Canoe. -

In smooth water this is easy enough, but if at all rough it is an awful business, and not to be attempted in a heavy canoe. Get both centre-boards well up. Take in all sail. Trice up the rudder. Take off the hatch and hatch cover. If there is help at hand, a couple of men can catch the canoe by the fore end of the well, and perhaps another by the painter, which should be cast off from aft, and up she goes, with you in her, all safe and dry. If the men know the craft, all right, but if not they are dreadfully likely to pull at something that won't bear it, anti it is impossible to make all the gear so stout as to stanch pulling at. If alone you must get wet in beaching, on a shelving beach to the knee at least, on hi steep beach, probably over head and ears. In the former case, the moment she is in a foot of water or so, jump out with the painter, and haul her along. The case of a steep beach is almost desperate. The instant she is about to touch, out you go with painter, choosing a rising not a falling wave. Get ashore as best you can, and haul her up quickly. Some slight damage is almost inevitable in this case.


To Get off a Beach. -

With help this is fairly easy, even in some sea. Let a couple of men launch the boat carefully with you on board, hatch well battened down, paddle through the surf; and then set sic sail. In moderately smooth water, on a favorable beach, one can get off alone, wading beside the boat to 18 inches of water and leaping in. I need hardly say that all this work demands a strong canoe, strong fittings, good keel and bilge-pieces, and a good swimmer as captain.


How to Manage when Capsized. -

Get out to windward, and lie athwart the boat's side, let go main halliards, and get mainsail down, and if she will not then right, down mizen also. Cut away anything that won't run of itself. Get in as she rights, set mizen, and lower the fore centre-board. Bale out, and get way on her. Men have been capsized in smooth water, wet their legs to the knee, and arms to the elbow, and have even been upset in sailing races, righted their canoes, and come in for a place at the finish.

Upsets are not necessary at all, I have had very few, and those chiefly when trying experiments which I knew were likely to lead to "capsism," and was prepared to face the consequences. Some kind of a life-buoy or belt on board is advisable, as it imparts moral courage, and a sense of prudence to the crew, bunt its practical utility is marred by the fact that it never happen, to be on when it is wanted; by the same mysterious law of nature which makes it rain when one has a new hat. If the canoe was run down and sunk by a vessel, the survivors, if any, of her crew, might be pleased to meet the life-buoy floating about if only as a reminiscence of the craft.

A very large stout swimming-collar, got up like a lifebuoy in a canvas case with the boat's name on it, might be carried on deck in some readily detachable manner, and would look very ship-shape. It would be more useful than a small life-buoy, a large one being out of the question, and more easily and rapidly put on than a belt, especially after the upset.


To Board a Canoe From Swimming. -

Crawl as far as you can on to the after deck, forward of mizen mast, with your head aft. Turn round on your back and get a hand on each coaming. Then lift your feet into the well. If you can't do this, unship mizen, get hold of the stern, push it between your legs, creep forwards till near the well, then sit upright, astride of the boat, and lift your fret into the well. If neither of these will suit you, I fear you will have to remain outside, so by all means practise them when bathing, as also upsetting, righting, etc. It will give the boat a good wash, at least and add greatly to your confidence when afloat.

Always carry a good baler and a sponge, and have a knife in your belt to cut away any gear that entangles you, or refuses to render.

Above all, don't be flurried or frightened in the "day of adversity," and if you get upset, go steadily to work to save the ship, in a business-like manner, as if it was quite an ordinary part of the day's work, a little unpleasant perhaps, like paddling against a head wind, but nothing more. When the craft has been well righted, and brought safely into port, one has a feeling of satisfaction that goes far to outweigh any remorse at having been awkward enough to let her go over.


Coasting. -

Sea sailing will probably be begun in a bay or river mouth, which will afford a fair amount of shelter. But in a little while the canoeist will doubtless be ambitious of taking more extended cruises, and in settled weather nothing can be pleasanter. However, it is well for this purpose to be not only a good canoeist, but something of a sailor as well. The chart must be understood, and carefully studied before starting, as one's hands may be too full for it when afloat. The tides should, of curse, be carefully "got up," and the indications of weather, should not be neglected. Local information as to tides, etc., from fishermen should be carefully used and combined with that n the chart and pilot-books. Courses should the judiciously shaped according to present and probable winds, with an eye to the barometer so as to have a refuge to leeward when possible. However, I would recommend no one to begin coasting in a canoe until some experience has been gained in larger craft, or where this is wanting, not to be over-bold in "forcing a passage." It is quite a sufficiently creditable performance for so small a craft to go round the coast at all, without incurring needless risk. However, in fine weather, if a man possesses the necessary amount of skill and seamanship, coasting is great fun, and if one has any yachting friends on the same coast, meeting with them from port to port adds to the amusement. Besides, a justifiable feeling of pride occurs anyone the crew of the canoe at hearing the men in the big yachts say, as she arrives at harbour, "Why, here's that little canoe again that was with us at such and such a place - however did she get here?"


General Remarks. -

In navigable waters a lamp, preferably with green and red lights, should be always ready in case of being out at night. It is important to let other craft know where one is, but it is of still greater consequence to know where they are going, so keep a sharp look out, at night and indeed at all times. I believe the danger of being run down by steamers is no greater by night than by day if at proper light is shown. There is at least this advantage at night as compared with day-light, that seeing the light only people do not guess how small the craft is, and thus are more inclined to give her room.

Whether by day or night, give a wide berth to steamers and all craft, considering not only the danger of a collisions, but that it is unreasonable for a small pleasure craft to delay or interfere with important traffic. Remember the general rule in meeting is, Port your helm, i.e., "keep to the right." A fog-horn takes up very little room, and should always be carried where it can by any possibility be wanted. A fog-horn might be contrived, which by shifting mouthpieces would form a speaking-trumpet. This would be very handy.

A good compass should be on board, as a matter of course and should be fitted with gimbals to compensate for the motion and listing of the boat. A small lead and a few fathom of line wound on a stick, is almost necessary in some places. It is particularly useful to tell the direction of the tide in fogs or at night. A small aneroid barometer is now a very cheap investment, and one that is well worth making. Great accuracy is not needed, but the instrument must be as sensitive as possible, to give ready indication of a rise or fall.

A tide table must be carried and it is well worth while to calculate the daily tides for the places likely to be visited, for the whole period of the cruise, and write them out on a card. This should be protected by a coat of varnish and fastened with a couple of tacks or drawing pins to the under side of the hatch, or some other convenient place. The same may be done with lists of bearings and distances, buoys, lights, etc., but all of these that lie on the course intended to be sailed each day should be committed to memory the evening before.


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