Boaters utilizing the lee of the wind to their advantage will encounter far more enjoyable experiences when anchoring and navigating. The term leeward applies to both boats and land. In addition to comfort, the wind direction is effective in containing emergencies such as onboard fires. What is the Leeward side?

What Is The Meaning Of Leeward Side

Leeward is a term used in marine environments relating to both land structures and vessels. 

The leeward side is considerably more peaceful than the windward side due to being sheltered from the wind. 

To escape driving winds, venture to the leeward side by foot on land or steering the boat. The difference between the two sides is astonishing. 

Interestingly enough, the landscape between each side is dramatically different, particularly in the Caribbean islands. However, in Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina, can shelter obtain by moving from the windward side of barrier islands to the leeward side. 

What Is The Opposite Of Leeward

The opposite side of the leeward is windward. Windward sides of land and vessels face wind and rain, which is unobstructed by objects and landforms. 

While the windward side of an island remains constant, a vessel’s windward side alters based on the direction of the steerageway. Boat operators change course to reduce the impact of wind and rain, thus altering where the windward side of the vessel is affected. 

Why Is It Called Leeward

Position in the lee refers to the side of the vessel or piece of land that is not exposed to the direct assault of the prevailing winds and rain and a result of shelter.

The shelter is as simple as the console of a boat or the peak of a mountain. In heavy rains and strong winds, boaters and adventurers seek refuge on the leeward side to escape the torrent.

Which Is Colder Windward Or Leeward

Due to the direct flow of wind against the windward side of the boat or piece of land, the windward side remains lower in temperature. 

Temperatures are lower because of the constant flow of moving air and driving rain during showers. The opposite side in the lee is sheltered from the wind, and as a result, the temperatures are higher. 

Why Does The Windward Side Get More Rain

The windward side of a boat or seashore receives more rain because the wind is driving the rain against the surface.

The rainiest side is on the windward side because elevation does not factor into blocking the impact. 

Much like hills or mountains, the leeward side of a boat is protected by overhead coverings or other objects blocking the wind and the rain. 

How Is The Leeward Side Of A Boat Impacted

Whether it be the bow, stern, port side, or starboard side, any of these can be positioned leeward. 

The side of the boat facing in the leeward direction will encounter a combination of minimal and seas. To put it simply, the calmest side of the vessel.

Opposite of leeward is windward. The windward side is subject to breaking waves and direct contact with the wind due to the direction.

Onboard Fires

In the event of an onboard fire, it is essential to determine the direction of the wind to minimize damage resulting from fire spread by wind.

Consider the impact of wind on forest fires. When winds are strong, fires spread rapidly. Unfortunately, wind influences boat fires in the same manner.

When possible, to reduce the spread of fire, maneuver the vessel so that the fire is on the leeward side. A raging fire on the windward side will cause the flames to spread due to the wind pushing the fire further along the boat.

Wave Impact

The waves on the windward side will crest and break on the hull or over the gunnel. As a result, passengers will become wet by sea spray or waves crashing. 

When possible, steer the boat bow into the wind. The hull design will displace the water resulting in a dryer and more stable ride. 

So Know You Know The Effects Of Wind On The Leeward Versus The Windward Side

Understanding the effects of wind on a vessel or land is critical for both the safe operation of a vessel and handling emergencies. Emergencies do occur, and utilizing the wind to your advantage can be the difference in life or death. In addition to extreme circumstances, using the wind direction to your advantage allows for a more comfortable ride or calm anchorage.