A clean tow

The towing boat in this illustration had a problem because of her self-steering. It wouldn’t take much of a tweak from a towrope with 7 tons of yacht on the end of it to bend something. She therefore rigged a simple towing bridle, a good idea on any boat with a stern-hung rudder. Even on a vessel where the stern is unencumbered, using a bridle is a kindness because it spreads the load between at least two points. Rig it so you can always slip one end. Secure the towrope to the bridle with a bowline and cleat it off on the towed vessel so either yacht can let go in an emergency. Take up the strain gradually and make sure nothing is sucked into the propeller!