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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest > General Discussion (sailing related)
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Old 06-16-2009
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Gaining More Experience

Hello Everyone,

My name is Mike and I have enjoyed sailing the waters along the North and South Carolina boarder for the past 5 years. A neighbor of mine from Long Island, NY got me into sailing and sparked my drive to get a boat. I purchased a 21' 1978 Montego in the summer of 2004 and my Long Island buddy taught me the basics and I have had the 'bug' ever since. I sailed that boat every day that I could and decided that I wanted to figure out a way to share my joy for boating with others that were interested.

I live in Little River, SC which is just north of the popular tourist destination, Myrtle Beach. Many people that visit our area want to get out on the water so starting a boat tour company seemed like a logical idea.

My folks were gracious enough to help me purchase my current boat (32' 1982 Morgan 321) in the fall of 2005 and I further honed my boat handling and sailing skills for the next year. I have really enjoyed the Morgan and think it is a well designed, sturdy boat. It is a comfortable cruiser and a great boat to enjoy a sail on.

In the fall of 2007 I attended Sea School here in Myrtle Beach (great experience) and was able to obtain my OUPV 6-pack license from the Coast Guard. I opened my tour company in summer of 2007 and I am still having a great time operating the boat. I have been fortunate to take out some really great people and have had many positive experiences (and thankfully, no bad ones).

I feel confident handling my boat in and around the docks and out on the water and I want to take my sailing to the next level. After our summer tourist rush I am looking into taking a week long ASA crash course in the USVI that would take me through levels 101, 103, and 104 of their cirriculum.

I think that this would be a great learning experience and perhaps open up some new doors. Over the past couple of years I have strongly decided that boating and sailing is right for me and where my passion lies. I love the water and being on it and experiencing the power that it offers. If anyone has any ideas as to help me in my further advancement of pursuing my dreams then please feel free to share.....

If you know of any positive crewing opportunities please let me know of those as well. I am driven, relatively smart (ha), have experience handling a boat, willing to learn more, not afraid of storms (ha), and I have no attachments on the mainland.

Thanks in advance for your thoughts and interest in my search for gaining more sailing experience....Happy sailing!
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Old 06-17-2009
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Hi Mike,

I have taken 101, 103, and 104. In my experience they are really targeted toward people that have *far* less experience than you. I think you might get more out of a more advanced course. A few possibilities:

Mahina Expeditions conducts sailing and navigation training and expeditions in the South Pacific and offers offshore sailing seminars
Blue Water Sailing, Advanced Sailing Lessons, Blue Water Cruising

I am sure there are many others.
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Old 06-17-2009
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RainDog,

Thanks so much for your reply and for your thoughts.

To take the more advanced ASA classes such as Coastal Navigation and Coastal Passage Making, it seems that you have to have the first few levels under your belt as a prerequisite....Do you know if that is the case?

Mahina Expeditions looks awesome....thanks for the link.....have you done that one?

Mike
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Old 06-17-2009
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I have not taken either of the classes linked. Just heard of them and my impression is they are far more advanced than the ASA classes you are considering.

ASA does have a way to challenge the lower classes and go directly to the more advanced classes. I think they charge you a pretty hefty fee for it.

If you are going to go through a series of certifications, I would at least consider US Sailing instead of ASA. I am not saying either is better, just that you should research both if you have not already.
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Old 06-17-2009
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Mike

You can test through the ASA courses. All you need to do is contact your local ASA school and find out the proceedure.
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