The Advantage of Sailing on a Lake Versus the Ocean

People love to sail on both the ocean and on lakes. There are advantages and disadvantages to sailing on these two bodies of water. Some of them may be more obvious while others you may not of thought of yet. Here we will discuss what advantages there are to be sailing on a lake versus sailing on the ocean.

Fresh Water

First off, when sailing on a lake you do not need to worry about salt causing damage to any part of the boat since you will be sailing in freshwater. Saltwater is corrosive causing more problems and requiring more maintenance to be done on the boat. Also, consider the fact that you cannot drink saltwater, so, if something happens while you are out sailing in the ocean, you can very easily run into the problem of not having any water to drink. At least on a lake, you can drink the water, it may not be the purest but unlike salt water, it is unlikely to kill you.

Easier Weather Conditions

On a lake you do not have to worry about weather to the same extent as you do on the ocean. There can be tremendously powerful storms out in the ocean, which produces gigantic waves. You won’t get these storms in a lake setting, nor do you need to worry about tsunamis or hurricanes. The waves also won’t be as large on a lake as they are out in the ocean. This means it is generally safer to sail on a lake than out in the open ocean. You can still get storms on a lake obviously, but they would not be as powerful as out in the open ocean.

Safety Concerns

If something happens out on a lake, you can much more easily be found and rescued, while on the open ocean this will not be so easy. The ocean is vast and between the winds and ocean currents, your boat could be carried for miles out of the way of where your boat would be expected to be found. This means that even if you let people know your travel route beforehand, this may not mean much as your boat could get carried way out from where you planned to be.

Another advantage to sailing on lakes is that you wouldn’t encounter large dangerous animals. The oceans have sharks and even giant octopus which can pose a threat to your life. The sharks could become a problem if you end up in the water in the ocean, if your boat sinks or overturns.

Some lakes are small enough that if your boat sinks, you can conceivably swim to shore. This is not always the case though as the Great Lakes in North America are very large and it probably is not possible for people to easily reach shore depending on how far out they are on a boat, also the water is very cold.  Nonetheless, your chance of getting help and being rescued if you are in a boat on a lake is still much higher than if you are in a boat in the ocean. These are some of the advantages to sailing on a lake compared with sailing on the ocean.


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