Caribbean Winds

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What do "upwind" and "downwind" mean in sailing?

Caribbean Winds

When sailing the winds of the Caribbean sea, there are two important terms to know: upwind and downwind. Traveling "upwind" means that you are moving across the wind. When making this maneuver, a boat gets its lift from the sails. When sails are around 30 degrees to the wind blowing across the boat, the sails will receive most of their lift. When moving "downwind," however, the wind pushes the sails. This lets the sails out completely will give the boat all its force.

   

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