Bar Crossing

Bar Crossing 2018-03-08T05:50:14+00:00

Does the thought of crossing a bar intimidate you? Well there is no need for it to. Crossing a bar is perfectly safe when you know what you are doing.

This is the latest and newest course recognised by the Coastguard available to teach people best practice for crossing a bar. We will teach all the required theory, then hop on a boat with an instructor and go out to a bar for some practical driving and learning how to take on waves correctly and safely.

The Bar Crossing course consists of the following and will take one day:


  • Bar formation
  • Tide effects
  • Wind/wave/swell effects
  • Shifting of channel
  • Local knowledge

Visual observation/orientation

  • View/observe
  • Sketch channel
  • ‚ÄòReading‚Äô waves

Safety Precautions

  • PFDS
  • Boat checks
  • Secure loose gear
  • Crew Brief
  • SAR watch/Bar watch/TR


  • Approach
  • Observe
  • Boat handling techniques
  • Throttles
  • Trim
  • Commitment ‚Äì if in doubt don‚Äôt go out.

What if it goes wrong?

  • MOB
  • Break-down/engine/fuel
  • Rogue waves
  • Grounding

MNZ resources

  • Safety guidelines & bar crossing DVD
  • Accident reports & lessons learned
  • Bar crossing sticker