This book now available:

Click the above image for a link to the publisher's website, or here for a link to Amazon.

Click here to download the form for the Astro Navigation chapter, which includes a unique step-by-step guide for Astro sight reduction.

Welcome to the Aztec Sailing Website

This website is an on-line learning resource with significant quantity of useful material for trainee crew and skippers on Cruising (i.e. Sea-Going) Yachts. It is also a useful reference site for experienced skippers and other people who need to understand the sea (e.g. Motorboat Skippers, Divers).

The idea is to provide material that is clearly explained. Too often, books and sailing courses present material in a confusing way, cloaked in obfuscating terminology (frequently because the author/instructor doesn't understand it properly themselves). This website aims to undo that, and get rid of the mystery - anyone should be able to understand this stuff if it's properly explained. And if you can't, it's probably my fault - so please tell me!

What Does This Website Offer?

The heart of this website is On-line Theory, to the Day Skipper and Coastal Skipper / Yachtmaster ® level. This is followed by Yachtmaster ® Ocean theory.

'Theory' is the stuff that is easier to learn on dry land, quietly and at your own speed, before you start to use the knowledge on a boat. The topics are: Navigation, Tides, Charts, Navigational Aids, Rules of the Road (Collision Regulations) and Weather. For each topic there are facts you have to know, and concepts you need to understand, before you can successfully learn the practical aspects of what you do as a skipper on a boat.

How Does It Fit Into The RYA Training Scheme?

You can use the On-line Theory as a textbook and/or preparation for the RYA Shorebased Courses:

Day Skipper Shorebased

Coastal Skipper and Yachtmaster ® Offshore Shorebased

Yachtmaster ® Ocean

Alternatively you can use this material to study on your own, if you don't wish to attend the Shorebased courses.

Either way, this is the material you will need to know before you go on one of the RYA Practical Courses:

• Day Skipper Practical

• Coastal Skipper Practical

This website does not, however, offer any RYA course or qualification. It is simply an 'on-line text book'.

Books by Bill Johnson

After seeing this website, one of the mainstream nautical publishers asked me to write a book called Essential Boat Radar. This is now available from Fernhurst Books. So there is a page on this website about radar.

Radar is something that you need to understand in order to be able to use it. Essential Boat Radar explains all the technical information about radar that you need; and it also explains how to actually use radar, for collision avoidance and navigation/pilotage which few (if any) other books do. Look here for more information, then BUY THE BOOK !

Following this, I have written two furher books on the practical aspects of sailing. The first is Manoeuvring at Close Quarters Under Power, published by Adlard Coles Nautical (remarkably, it's now also available in Dutch and Russian!).

The second is the Reeds Crew Handbook, also published by, and available from, Adlard Coles Nautical.

These books are described in more detail in the Practical Skills section of this website.

All three books are available from Amazon - follow this link.