Boating Guide

Swim Piloting

Swim Piloting

Piloting improves swimming. Swimming improves piloting

The Dolphin Club uses a variety of watercraft to assure the safety and success of the swims. These craft are referred to as pilot vessels and your participation as a pilot is an essential part of the success of the swim and the safety of the swimmers

Dolphin Club craft may only be used to pilot on club-approved swims. These include:

  • Official Club Swims
  • Independent Swims (Approved by Swim Commissioner & Boat Captain)
  • Board sanctioned third party swims (Swim Across America, Baykeeper etc)

Club boats may not be used to pilot on third party commercial swims.


To pilot effectively an understanding of how the currents and conditions in the bay affect moving throughout the bay is essential. You should have read through the Bay Safety Guide, and have had an orientation to use the craft you are using.

We welcome all boaters at the club to come out and join us on club swims. It’s a great way to see how they work and help us keep an eye on swimmers. Be aware that some swims are tougher to pilot than others. If you’re uncertain if you have the skills necessary to pilot a longer swim, talk to the lead pilot or chief pilot in advance.


We differentiate between ‘escorts’ and ‘pilots’ – Any member may be an escort. But those who have experience and demonstrated swim piloting skills may be considered ‘pilots’ – With enough experience, you can become a Lead Pilot and pilot swimmers in Club Resourced Independent Bay Swims (CRIBS). Certification may be done as part of piloting a swim under the supervision of the Chief Pilot, Boat Captain, or other designated senior pilot. 

Before joining us to pilot a swim, please familiarize yourself with these piloting essentials:

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