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Navy Patuxent Sailing Club
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NPSC Cruising Program

Cruise Forum (Members Only) | Roles | Responsibilities | Rafting


The NPSC Cruising Program exists to:


Cruising Defined

A cruise is a trip by one or more sailboats to an area outside of the immediate area of the West Basin for the purpose of sailing. It is not defined by time or distance, rather by the purpose of the trip. Boats may travel together, or separately and meet at the destination. The point of cruising is to enjoy sailing and people with like interests, and just how a cruise is defined is up to the Cruise Leader and participants.



Cruise Coordinator

The Cruise Coordinator will establish cruising guidelines and procedures for the club, insure that cruising activities are organized and scheduled on a regular basis, and provide assistance and guidance to Cruise Leaders. The Cruise Coordinator is appointed by the Commodore and serves for a year.

Cruise Leader

Each cruise consisting of more than 1 boat should have a Cruise Leader assigned. This person will publish a schedule including destinations, insure participating boats and crews understand the NPSC cruising guidelines, and be the focal point for cruise information. Any member can be a Cruise Leader simply by announcing and organizing a cruise.


On each participating boat, the Skipper is responsible for the safety of that boat and for insuring that all Federal, State, and NPSC rules and regulations are followed. While companion boats and a Cruise Leader may assist and advise, the Skipper has the ultimate authority and responsibility for the operation of his or her boat.



The Cruise Coordinator or Cruise Leader will publish a schedule of cruising on the NPSC web site. It is the responsibility of the Cruise Leader to insure the information published is accurate and timely. Members planning to participate on the cruise are responsible for contacting the Cruise Leader and staying informed.



Each skipper should attempt to contact the Cruise Leader by marine VHF radio upon getting underway, and at other times requested by the Cruise Leader. If no other times are specified, NPSC boats should check in with the Cruise Leader at 1000 and 1400 daily. Channel 16 should be monitored at check-in times, shifting channels to follow flotilla traffic. The Cruise Leader may specify a working channel as a first choice for communications on a given cruise, keeping in mind that all boats may not have all channels. Cell phones may be used as an alternative, especially on the intermediate boats without VHF radios.



Destinations for cruises must be within the area specified in the NPSC bylaws. (For intermediate and large boats, the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries.) A Cruise Leader may change the destination of a cruise, particularly with the prospect of unfavorable weather. The Cruise Leader should keep in mind that late starting boats may be trying to intercept the cruise at an advance destination.


Cruise Leader Responsibilities

A Cruise Leader is expected to:



The NPSC raft tradition is one of the most pleasant social features of a cruise. A happy raft, however, must be a safe one, and responsibility falls on all concerned.

The Cruise Leader is normally the Raft Master and as such directs the formation, maintenance, and break-up of the raft. Specific responsibilities are as follows:

Individual skippers should conform to a few simple rules to ensure happy, safe participation in a raft.