Advice for gaining experience in Northern NJ - SailNet Community

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Go Back   SailNet Community > Skills and Seamanship > Learning to Sail
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  #1  
Old 09-09-2008
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piratemike is on a distinguished road
Question Advice for gaining experience in Northern NJ

Hi all. I just took my US Basic Keeboat course in NY Harbor and wanted to get some advice on the best way to get experience before eventually getting my own boat in a year or so.

I live in Northern NJ, so NY Harbor is the closest location for me, although Raritan Bay/Sandy Hook are about 1 hour away. Eventually, I will be looking to sail/cruise with my young son (2.5 years old) onboard and inexperienced family and friends. From what I heard from my instructor said the Raritan Bay area is better sailing then NY Harbor by NY Harbor is closer to me by about 30 minutes.

The school I took the course at has a sailing club, which I was thinking of joining for remainder of this season and definitely next year to get some experience through racing, etc.

I was wondering what people though about yacht clubs generally or ones in the area as opposed to a sailing club or in addition to one. From a Google search it seems that Liberty Yacht Club, Newport Yacht Club, Raritan Yacht Club and Atlantic Highlands Yacht Club are all within 1 hour of me.

Any thoughts or suggestions anyone may have would be much appreciated.

Thank you.
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Old 09-11-2008
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Northern NJ covers a lot of ground. I'm in Teaneck and when I was in your shoes, I went over to City Island (the Bronx) and hung out at the yacht clubs there. Sailing LI Sound, in my opinion, is way better than NY Harbor or Raritan Bay. I got myself involved in the Wednesday night and weekend races even though I'm not big into racing (even now, 15 years later). It's the best way to hone your skills and meet people who can give you more sailing experience. it took very little time before I had so many sailing invitations, I was turning people down. Now I've got my own boat and I joined the club where I first made my contacts. Give it a shot.
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Old 09-11-2008
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Depending on where you are, there is also sailing up in the Tappan Zee, with Nyack boat club and Haverstraw providing options. I am in Bergen County (though I sail in Long Island) and City Island or the nearby sound (New Rochelle, Mamaroneck, etc.) are options as well. Can't comment on the clubs but I have a friend who is a fairly new sailor and charters out of New Rochelle and City Island.
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Old 09-11-2008
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I'm actually in Bergen County also. Didn't think of Long Island simply because of the hit or miss traffic on the Cross Bronx or FDR. I guess I'll look out that way too. Was going to try the racing, even though I think I will enjoy cruising more, simply for the experience. Thanks for the advice and any more would be welcome!
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Old 09-12-2008
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If you are looking at weekends in summer, traffic to the NJ shore (including Raritan Bay) is pretty awful also. There is also sailing out of Great Kills Harbor in Staten Island and Sheepshead Bay in Brooklyn, but from Bergen County City Island is closer than either. The Cross Bronx is a trial in all cases. And the other Long Island Sound places I suggested were on the Westchester side, not Nassau county.
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Old 09-12-2008
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I can second Tweitz's recommendations
Quote:
Originally Posted by tweitz View Post
... Nyack boat club and Haverstraw
I live in Hawthorne, NJ (Franklin Lakes, Glen Rock, Paterson) and kept our boat in Haverstraw for several years.

Lots of great folks, great sailing, etc. and it was also about 30-45 minutes away, but far less congested than NY harbor area.

Suggest you visit the various marinas / clubs mentioned and talk with some of the folks... see where you think you'll fit in.

Enjoy,
Carlos
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Old 09-13-2008
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Haverstraw seems like it might be a good fit and I'm going to check out the Nyack Boat Club. I also noticed that a place on City Island rents boats so I will probably head out that way too for a look. Thanks for all the suggestions!
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