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Know Your Boating Lingo?

Thinking of purchasing a boat and listening to other boat owners talk? They will likely use terms like "bow," "starboard," and "port." What are they talking about? Boating has its own unique language and knowing those terms can make it easier to communicate.

Here are some common boating terms to know:

  • Aft - At or near the back of the boat.
  • Aground - Touching the bottom .
  • Ballast - Extra weight carried on a boat to increase stability.
  • Bow - The forward section of the boat.
  • Cast Off - To let go of a line.
  • Course - The intended direction .
  • Hull - The main section of the boat.
  • Knot - A measure of speed for nautical miles per hour. A nautical mile is slightly longer than a mile on land.
  • List - A boat's leaning to one side.
  • Port Side - The left side of a boat as you are looking foward.
  • Starboard Side - The right side of a boat as you are looking forward.
  • Stern - The back end of a boat.
  • Wake - The area of waves following a moving boat.
ANPAC® supports the North American Safe Boating Campaign.