knots and nautical (sea) miles - A nautical mile is 6080 feet - but, more importantly it is 1 minute of latitude. The importance of this to boaters is that you can take distances off the latitude scales located on the east and west side of a nautical chart. 1 minute of longitude is only equal to a nautical mile at the equator.
Speed in knots works the same as miles per hour however the proper reporting is knots, not knots per hour. The term comes from the use of a chip log to determine a vessels speed in the days of square riggers. The log was thrown over the side attached to a long line with knots tied at specified intervals. At the proper time a 28 second glass was turned and the speed of the boat was the number of knots that were pulled over the taffrail before the sand ran through the glass.
lee shore", A lee shore is the shore you will blown onto as your vessel is blown to leeward. While a weather shore offers protection from the wind. Speaking in traditionally, understood nautical terms does help us when we communicate with the rest of the boating world.
Edited by mikekayak (09/28/07 03:02 PM)
Sea Kayaker Magazine