How to Sail a Sailboat : Understanding Water Depth & Tides on a Sailing Chart


You’ll notice that there are all these small
numbers throughout the chart. This is the depth at, these are mean, lower, low, water
heights. That would be ten feet, so then when you do tides and you look at your tide charts
and let’s say you have a one foot tide, you would add that one foot to all the numbers.
If you have a negative tide, like a negative foot, you would subtract one foot from all
these numbers to know what the depth of that water will be at the time that you are at
that spot. The magenta colors that we have are all shipping channels. In addition to
the buoy markers, you’ll notice that there will be clusters on some areas, like this
cluster in here of marks. These actually are moored barges that are actually out in the
bay right now due to the construction of the San Francisco Bay Bridge. Those are marked
on the chart too then prevent you from running into them in the dark.

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