Just another Moderator
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: New Westminster, BC
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Welcome to Sailnet!
While taking the various ASA classes is a great idea, there are thousands out there that did just what you are contemplating - as did we - and it's easy to do .
There is so much literature, boards like this one, video and other resources that with patience and common sense you can certainly find your own way.
Should you decide to venture further afield and charter or own in more significant bodies of water, at that point you should consider taking courses on charting, navigation, learn the meaning of the aids to navigation so as to avoid accidentaly groundings and unnecessarily adverse currents. The Power and Sail Squadron courses are excellent in this regard, and are usually available on a widespread basis.
27-28 feet is a very good size for starting as it allows you to quickly branch out into relatively comfortable overnight/weekend cruising in sheltered waters as you learn.
1984 Fast/Nicholson 345 "FastForward"
".. there is much you could do at sea with common sense.. and very little you could do without it.."
Capt G E Ericson (from "The Cruel Sea" by Nicholas Monsarrat)