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post #1 of 16 Old 06-10-2010 Thread Starter
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Really "learning to sail"

Scanning through this part of the forum I notice that it's a little advanced for greenhorns like myself. So can anyone suggest any good websites for "learning to sail"?
Also I am looking to take lessons. Anyone have a suggestion for the south Fl. area?

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post #2 of 16 Old 06-10-2010
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This forum is intended for anyone at any level of skill to come and ask questions. There are a lot of good ways to learn to sail, but the easiest is to start with a basic sailing course and then read and practice what you read.

Probably, the best sailing school in Florida is Steve Colgate's Offshore Sailing School. They have two locations on the west coast of Florida. When I lived in Florida in the 1970's there used to be a relatively inexpensive sailboat rental and school at Dinner Key (Castle Harbor) and Mathison Hammock in Coral Gables. I actually taught for them on occasion when I was in college. I understand that they are in business but that Capt. Castle is long gone and his daughter Jinxie has retired.

Good luck,
Jeff


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post #3 of 16 Old 06-10-2010 Thread Starter
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I have been looking into some schools but the prices are not to realistic. I've seen 595.00 and up for a 2 day course. Im afraid after 2 weeks out of the class alot might not stick. The prices for a 5 day class are thousands. For that matter ill buy a boat.
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post #4 of 16 Old 06-10-2010
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We learned by finding an individual charter that would teach us while we were out. Cost us $150 for a 4 hour lesson. We took 2 lessons, and that was enough that we could get a boat from point A to B. Found another dude who rented his O'Day 27 for $200/day. Took it out by ourselves once and got the hang of everything. Then we bought our C27.

Be creative. Just don't be timid. It's doable.


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post #5 of 16 Old 06-10-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shortnsalty View Post
Scanning through this part of the forum I notice that for someone like myself it's a little a little advanced for greenhorns like myself. So can anyone suggest any good websites for "learning to sail"?
Also I am looking to take lessons. Anyone have a suggestion for the south Fl. area?
Find a local YC that has wednesday night (usually) racing and offer yourself up. Just be clear that you're keen but with no experience, worst thing you could do is lie about experience. Someone will take you, plenty of boats need ballast... maybe after a few outings of hanging out on the high side and handing out beer, ask if you can trim some sails on the way back in from the race, grow from there.

Be there early, ask a lot, don't be afraid to just talk to people and if they don't need crew if they could point you to someone who does. Once on the boat, observe, and if things seem chill feel free to ask a couple small questions esp if they're something like "okay, so for the next x what should I do / where should I be?" Stay late and help put the boat away, then once that's done ask alllll the questions you like.

That's how I did it 3 or 4 years ago, now I'm the crew boss/tactician/jib&spinnaker trimmer... sometimes racing (and winning) helm, do the odd tour of duty on the foredeck. Next week I'll be doing my 6th ocean crossing.... first Newport-Bermuda though. For one design racing I regularly trim/tactics/drive a J/24, do main or spin trim on a J/105... and sail all sorts of weird and wonderful things in handicap racing.

Just get out there and do it... racers aren't scary, they don't bite, and most desperately want to get people involved in sailing. You don't have to end up being a racer yourself, but there isn't a much faster way to learn the basics I think. You may also find "the complete sailor" handy so you'll understand what's going on on the boat when you're out
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post #6 of 16 Old 06-10-2010
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If you think lessons can be expensive. Wait until you start keeping a boat in good order. Sailing can be inexpensive, but you need to learn, or know how to fix anything yourself. The rewards are well worth it.......i2f

20 MPH ain't fast unless, you do it in a 1000sq 3/2 house on 10foot waves
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post #7 of 16 Old 06-10-2010
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Hello Shortnsalty

I am a new member here on the forums and new to sailing as well. This forum has be invaluable to me during this learning process. You are in the right place.

I am going to guess when you say "south florida" you mean the tri-county area (Palm beach, broward and dade) as it is not common in my experience to hear west coasters describe their area as south florida. I am in fort lauderdale so my limited knowledge is of the tri-county area.

I agree on the cost of sailing school. A little investigation showed me I could take most of these classes out of state cheaper, airfare and hotel included. I can't even find someone in state that teaches ASA110, which is the first one I would like to take.
As imagine2frolics kind of already said, sailing can be expensive. Over paying would just make it more so.

One or two of the local YC's do look promising. I need to investigate further. One, GulfStream Sailing Club has monthly events of racing and cruising, and the club seems friendly to new sailors w/o boats. They also have sunfish dingy races that are very affordable even for non-club members (less than $50 sunfish rental included if I read correctly).

In this area at least, YC seems like the best bet. Although Smackdaddy's plan sound good as well if you can pull it off.

As far as web sites go, this is the best one stop shopping web site I as a new/wannabe sailor have come across for learning to sail information.

If you are in this area as well and come across any good local "hands on" training please let me know.
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post #8 of 16 Old 06-10-2010
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Coconut Grove Sailing Club is a great place to learn.

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post #9 of 16 Old 06-10-2010 Thread Starter
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I will
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post #10 of 16 Old 06-10-2010 Thread Starter
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I'll look into the grove thx. I should say for the first 2 years I'm only looking to sail a small daysailer so I really just want the basics to stay safe and keep the wife and kids alive.
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