Math and physics of sailing (A web site intended for my math and physics students, but people interested in the Offshore Passage Making class might find it interesting too since there's lots of sailing information there.)
                                  2016  OFFSHORE  PASSAGE  MAKING  CLASS 
      May 6, 13, & 20th
                                                               6:00 - 9:00 PM

                                         "I must go down to the sea again, to the lonely sea and the sky,
                                         And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by,  .  .  ."

          John Masefield - Sea Fever

Bonneville's Off-Shore Passage Making ("OPM") Class is designed for sailors who would like to leave the lakes of Utah behind them (at least for a while) and head out on the open ocean with confidence. The course is divided into two parts: classroom training and offshore sailing.

The classroom training part of the course is open to all interested participants. It is taught as a regular face-to-face class for people who want to attend in person but it is also simultaneously broadcast over the internet as a live "webinar" utilizing two-way video streaming  This format allows people who don't live in Utah to participate just as easily as those who are attending in person. The classroom portion of the course covers the skills and knowledge that offshore sailors must have in order to sail safely and comfortably across oceans.

The offshore sailing portion of the class is where participants get to take the skills and knowledge that they acquired in the classroom and put them to use in an ocean sailing trip covering many hundreds of miles (or possibly many thousands of miles) and spanning many days (or possibly many weeks). During this trip participants will rotate through all crew positions from acting skipper to navigator to deck hand to galley slave. (Please note that "pampered tourist" is not one of the crew positions available.) Because offshore sailing is not for novices this part of the course is restricted to people who have either completed Bonneville’s introductory sailing classes or those who can provide a sailing resume showing that they’ve gained equivalent sailing experience by some other means.

This class covers the topics of:
  • Preparing the boat for an offshore voyage
  • Provisioning for long ocean passages
  • Route planning and weather routing
  • Equipment aboard an offshore passage making vessel
  • Safety at sea
  • Watch scheduling and what happens while off watch
  • Meteorology at sea, including SSB radio, WeatherFax reception and interpretation
  • Heavy weather sailing
  • Handling emergencies offshore
The class does not cover the topic of celestial navigation. That topic is covered in Bonneville’s Celestial Navigation class, which is taught separately.

Plans for the 2016 Offshore Sailing Trip

The offshore sailing portion of Bonneville's 2016 OPM class will start  in mid to late July, leaving from Puerto Rico.  The trip will end in Florida.  With the prevailing trade winds at our back this should be a pleasant and easy trip of a bit more than a thousand miles lasting about a week and a half, maybe two.   If the people participating have enough free time to stop and play at some of the islands we'll pass along the way then it's possible we could extend the trip time a bit more.  The itinerary and exact dates will be pinned down later, after discussing things with the people who are planning to participate.

Cost:     $200 for the classroom portion which is taught in April 2016.

              $2,000 for the offshore sailing portion which is done in July 2016
              (food costs not included) 

Deposit:    Full payment for the May classes due prior to the first class meeting.

To Register: Call 801.636.5204

Text:     “The Voyager’s Handbook” by Beth Leonard, published by McGraw Hill

Alternate Texts (Highly Recommended):

              "Heavy Weather Sailing", by Coles and Bruce, published by McGraw Hill
              "Storm Tactics" by Lin and Larry Pardey, published by Pardey Books
              "World Cruising Routes" by Jimmy Cornell, published by McGraw Hill

                                                             The Instructor 


Douglas Hendricks is a USCG-licensed 50-ton master with thirty years of sailing experience. He has crossed the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian oceans, sailed in the Mediterranean, the Caribbean, Indonesia, Tahiti, Thailand, Hawaii, Africa and the Bahamas in addition to many years of sailing along both the east and west coasts of the US. He has taught both Offshore Passage Making and Celestial Navigation for Bonneville School of Sailing since 2008.  

                                                                   The Boat


  • The sailing vessel "Life" is a 1994 Hunter Passage 42,  center cockpit model.
  • The length is 42 feet, beam is 14 feet, and draft is 5 feet.
  • For offshore safety the boat has a life raft, EPIRB, radar and SSB radio with weatherfax reception capability.
  • The boat has two cabins and additional sleeping space in the salon.
  • Each cabin has its own head and shower.  
  • The master cabin is especially large and has a center-line queen bed with room to get on or off it from both sides.
  • The galley includes a propane stove and oven, a built-in microwave oven, a fridge and a freezer.
  • An 11-ft inflatable dingy with an outboard engine is used for getting ashore if we're anchored out.
  • Some additional creature comforts are: the boat has air conditioning, an HDTV with a DVD player, a stereo with CD/MP3 and USB flash drive reader, and it has a fresh water shower on the rear swim platform for rinsing off after a nice swim in the ocean.

                                                                     Photo Gallery of "Life"