Boat Life Blog


Westron wind, when wilt thou blow,

The small rain down can rain?

Christ! That my love were in my arms

And I in my bed again.

Westron Wind is among the earliest poems in the English language, a lyric set down in the early 1500s. At once lovelorn and yet hopeful, it evokes the “springtime” theme popular in the age. At first read, the poem is a simple tale of a man beset by dreary weather, yearning for an absent lover. But this is England, where no town is far from the sea. So hear it, too, in a woman’s voice, longing for a sailor gone far away. Western winds are harbinger of spring’s soft, life-giving rains and fair sailing weather. Will the winds blow him home?

Westron Wind remains at the top of my list of “someday” boat names. What are yours?

– Gordon Talley



Learn Boating Basics

AMERICA’S BOATING COURSE has taught the ABCs of enjoyable boating to millions. Earn a Massachusetts boating certificate. Spring courses are cancelled due to COVID-19. Learn online instead. NOTE online education is not accepted for a Massachusetts safe boating certificate. INFO  

Advanced Boating Skills

BUILD  CONTINUED CONFIDENCE in boat handling and navigation. Coastal and offshore. Paddling, power and sail. One-evening skills seminars and advanced courses. INFO

Meet Boating Friends

GATHER WITH BOATING ENTHUSIASTS for cruises, informal get-togethers, educational activities, dinner talks and events. Welcome to our next Boat Talk.

America’s Boating Club

THE UNITED STATES POWER SQUADRONS® is America’s Boating Club®, the world’s largest recreational boating organization. For Boaters, By BoatersTM.

who we are  

Great Blue Hill Sail & Power Squadron is a unit of the United States Power Squadrons®America’s Boating Club®. GBH launched in 1969—50 years ago—as a non-profit, educational organization. We are dedicated to making boating more enjoyable by teaching classes in seamanship, navigation, vessel handling and other boating subjects.

Our motto is “Come for the boating education … Stay for the friends.” We gather on cruises, at Boat Talks and for other special events where we can share our love of being on the water with fellow boaters.

Our members live primarily in Boston and the south and southwestern suburbs. However, our boats are harbored all across eastern New England: Boston harbor, Buzzards Bay, Narragansett Bay, Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard, Nantucket and Maine.

I Want To...



Due to the current Covid-19 emergency declaration, Great Blue Hill has suspended all courses and seminars this spring. We will reschedule these events in the fall. Enrollees will be contacted and their tuition refunded.
In the meantime, please see the links below for Online Courses and Seminars through our parent organization, the United States Power Squadrons®.
If you have questions, please use our website CONTACT form.
Courses & Seminars Online • Always Available

Our parent organization, the United States Power Squadrons®, has paired with the BoatUS Foundation to offer many of our educational offerings online. America’s Boating Club®/USPS members receive a discount. DETAILS


NEW! GBH’s YOUTUBE CHANNEL is now live! Its first online videos stream the GBH 50th ANNIVERSARY slideshow, Wonderful Memories and archive footage of our 25th Anniversary Celebration. See GBH captains, mates, crew and boats across 50 years.

The ABCs Online • Always Available

Have a new boat? Need a refresher? COVID-19 has closed this spring’s session. But you can take America’s Boating Course online instead. NOTE online education is not accepted for a Massachusetts safe boating certificate. DETAILS


Plan now to be part of an extended weekend in Maine aboard the Grace Bailey cruising Penobscot Bay. Cancelled due to COVID-19. We will reschedule as soon as possible.

boat safety 

VESSEL SAFETY CHECK – Learn how to schedule a courtesy VSC, at no charge, with a qualified USCGA or United States Power Squadrons Vessel Safety Examiner. Also learn how a VSC will improve your understanding of safety equipment and regulations. 

Massachusetts COVID-19 Boating Regulations

NEW: Massachusetts announces new guidelines for boating in state and coastal waters.
APRIL 27, 2020 The Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs has released guidelines for boating and various other marine and inland waterway related activities during the duration of Governor Baker’s stay-at-home advisory and essential services order. Among the restrictions are limiting recreational boating passengers and crew to members of a single household. Rafting is not permitted. For-hire boating, such as recreational fishing and whale watches is not permitted. See the full guidelines HERE.

View from the Blue

NEW!  May issue — Keep up with Great Blue Hill happenings. The current issue of our newsletter, View from the Blue, is now online. Feature articles, event flyers, the Commander’s message and more. May’s issue features how we respond to spring boating fever in times of COVID-19.

Resources for boaters

Check out these new websites from the United States Power Squadrons®America’s Boating Club® and friends of Great Blue Hill. They are full of tips and ideas to make your boating fun, safer and more enjoyable.

AMERICA’S BOATING CHANNEL is loaded with safe boating videos and boater education digital media created especially For Boaters, By BoatersTM . You’ll find how-to videos on basic skills, boating safety, life jackets, navigation rules, jet ski operation and more. Created with a grant from the US Coast Guard. America’s Boating Channel


 BOAT LIVE 365 BOATING IS SERIOUS FUN  Boat Live 365 empowers recreational boating groups to create a safe boating culture 365 days a year. At the Resource Library you can download materials and ideas to help spread the message. And the Come Aboard Webinar shares best practices that have worked for others. Boat Live 365


SAILANGLE is the ultimate boating community. Use this social media website to connect with boaters across America. Log in with your USPS member ID to access blogs, discussions and forums that help you use, maintain and enjoy your boat. SailAngle


CATBOAT ADVENTURES is the new YouTube Channel created by GBH’s own Jim Andersen. Check out the collection of “Skinny Waters” videos he created to give viewers a real taste of a classic New England catboat prowling the coves and rivers of Buzzards Bay. Catboat Adventures



The Kidde company has recalled some 40 million fire extinguishers manufactured since 1973. Recalled models have plastic handles that are difficult to press or may fail to function during a fire emergency. Some have broken apart in use and pose an impact danger. One death has been reported. To learn if your boat (or your home) extinguishers are being recalled and to request free replacement(s), click below.

Live Wind Speed


CANCELLED: America’s Boating Course • Wellesley @ Warren Building
Jun 2 @ 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm


America’s Boating Club® – The United States Power Squadrons® have taught basic boating courses to well over one million students! America’s Boating Course meets the Massachusetts requirements for a Boating Safety Certificate.

Instructor: Joe Kelliher, AP


GBH Executive Board @ Westwood Senior Center
Jun 4 @ 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Great Blue Hill Executive Board meetings are open to all GBH members.

GBH Executive Board @ Westwood Senior Center
Aug 6 @ 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Great Blue Hill Executive Board meetings are open to all GBH members.

GBH Executive Board @ Westwood Senior Center
Oct 1 @ 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Great Blue Hill Executive Board meetings are open to all GBH members.


— Website updated May 2, 2020 —