Presented by Ocean Navigator School of Seamanship at sea aboard SSV Oliver Hazard Perry, we discuss basic weather concepts and terminology, then relate those to the available charts for mariners. We find this approach better than a straight “chart reading” class as you will understand the structure of weather features and systems and will be able to use this knowledge to get much more out of the charts.
By the end of the first two days, we will have gained sufficient knowledge to go live and look at many different charts in real time (surface, 500 millibar, sea state, etc.) and relate these charts to the concepts we have discussed and talk about what they mean for the mariner. Thus you will learn weather concepts, weather systems, how these are shown on charts, and where to find and interpret the charts.
On the third and fourth day, we will talk about more advanced weather concepts, particularly tropical weather and this leads into the introduction of a completely new set of charts for that region. We will also discuss local weather phenomena that arise in certain parts of the world.
Through the week, there will be hands-on practical exercises where you will be able to use the charts and the culmination of the voyage is a voyage planning exercise using all available charts.
You will be provided with a 100-page customized instruction manual which supports the class and remains your weather tool for future voyages.
Your instructor will be Meteorologist Ken McKinley of Ocean Navigator School of Seamanship and Locus Weather Services, based in Camden, Maine.
Ken McKinley earned a Bachelors Degree in Atmospheric Sciences from Cornell University and attended graduate school at MIT where he participated in research applying doppler radar data to meteorological applications. He worked for a large meteorological consulting firm for 10 year providing forecast services to a variety of clients worldwide. In 1991 he founded Locus Weather. While he serves a variety of clients, a significant portion of the business is focused on the marine community. McKinley is well known in recreational yachting circles and has provided weather routing services for many yachts worldwide.