I want my wife come back and sail with me time after time. Therefore I do things to make it nice for her. A nice head, a nice shower, shade for her Irish skin. As the saying goes, when she is happy, the skipper is happy.
One of the things she has trouble with is getting back out of the water and into the dinghy after we’ve been snorkeling. It’s a struggle for her. I’ve tried using a rope ladder, various hand holds, etc. The solution, called the “Up-and-Out Ladder”, appeared at the St Petersburg boat show one year. So I bought it.
This sturdy well built collapsible ladder is great. Because of the way it is designed, it does not swing under the dinghy like the rope ladders do when you put your weight on them. It cantilevers out, and when you step on it, it swings down to a vertical position.
It telescopes down on itself for storage. When collapsed flat it measures only 16”x9”. It has good steps on each rung that are comfortable on your bare feet. It’s made from strong stainless steel and the steps are powder coated. After many years, mine still looks new and works well.
Not cheap, but well made and to me, well worth it. Here is a link to the manufacturer’s website.
Up and out marine Ladders
Up and Out Ladder Website
Update; at this years boat show I saw a competitor for the UP & OUT ladder. The manufacturer was St Croix, and it was being sold by an inflatable dealer, Suncoast Inflatables in Clearwater, Florida 727-572-4317. This dealer tells me that he has the Up and Out ladder in stock too.