09/03/2012 07:29 EDT | Updated 11/03/2012 05:12 EDT

High winds pose risk for Vancouver boaters

Boaters planning on returning to Vancouver on Monday are being warned of strong winds that may make it difficult to get back after the Labour Day weekend.

Marine forecasts are anticipating high winds of 20 to 25 knots throughout Monday afternoon and evening.

That's when many powerboats and sailboats will be heading home from the Gulf Islands or Vancouver Island.

Mike Cotter of the Jericho sailing centre in Kitsilano, says the trip across the Strait of Georgia will be challenging even for experienced boaters.

"For instance, if you're travelling down the highway at 60 to 70 kilometres you stick your head out the window you can get an idea what that type of wind feels like," he said.

"On the ocean of course that causes large seas and waves and it's a pretty harsh and unforgiving environment."

Cotter says inexperienced boaters would be wise to stay on the other side of the Strait of Georgia and wait until Tuesday to return.