What is the hardest aspect of learning to sail?
Imagine how easy sailing would be if you could see the wind! This is always the most difficult part of learning for a new sailor. How can we tell where the wind is coming from? Take a look at flags, the waves on the water, how the birds are nesting, and perhaps smoke from local chimneys. These are all indicators of wind direction.
If you're boat is anchored or tied to a mooring, know that your bow will always be pointed into the breeze. Any destination in front of your bow will require you to sail close hauled or 45 degrees to the wind.
Sailing in light air is most difficult for all. Often times the wind comes from three directions at the same time. New sailors think they are doing something wrong while the veterans use patience. Many will burn punks used to light fireworks just to see where the lightest of breezes are coming from. The Potomac River is famous for tricky winds in the summer months so be advised!