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Old 09-17-2012
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Re: One Week Courses

BTW, it was Blue Water Sailing School I used out of Ft. Lauderdale. I will be signing up for their Coastal Navigation (ASA 105) and Advanced Coastal Skipper (ASA 106) later down the year hopefully. Personally, I do hope the seas are somewhat angry when we cross the gulf stream with hard weather. I am looking for an education and not a pleasure cruise or "fun in the water". I would rather go through these hardships with someone that is very comfortable with it and teach me right from the get go than learn it on my own while I am forced to wear a diaper in fear.
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Old 09-17-2012
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Re: One Week Courses

I took a 2 day ASA 101, sailed with couple of friends 3 outings total and bought my 1st boat. I went out 26 times the 1st year and learned a lot with friends with experience. In retrospect I would have preferred to learn a lot more about boats and boat yards so that I would not be ripped off by poor quality work which I had to undo and redo. After 2 years I am currently looking for a good instuctor on the Chesapeke to continue ASA training on my own boat with my wife who is not as comfortable. I agree that it is better to digest and apply knowledge in chunks and perhaps in my fifties I need a little more repetition.
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Old 09-18-2012
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Re: One Week Courses

If you have the time an inclination then take the combined class and enjoy it. ASA allows for many combinations. Most common is 101/103 and then 104/105. I think your option of 1/3/4 is actually a good one. You get the basics in the first few days and 104 allows you to practice your skills while fresh in your mind. I actually think that the 104 class is really just a higher level review of 101/103. That is why they combine 104/105 as the navagation portion takes more time and you get to sail while taking it. I took 101/103 in a 4 day course, 104/105 was six days of cruising northern Lake Michigan.

Not sure what your timing is, but I see that Fair Winds has Lake Erie and Chesapeake options as well as Virgin Islands and others. If you are thinking in the near term I would find a warm climate to learn in and enjoy. Fall in the ?Great Lakes can turn on you as it did today in the north. Highs in the 50's, high winds, rain are not a good learning enviroment. If you are thinking longer term then Bay Breeze in Traverse City is a very good school for next summer. While they offer classes this time of year I would not suggest it.

Many will tell you to start slow and learn on small boats, etc.. My patience level has never been good and I prefer to jump in and learn what I want as fast as I can. Instead of starting with a wet boat, moving to a less wet boat, then to a mid 20's, and then 3 foot ites I knew what I wanted to accomplish and went out and did it. At my age I would still be getting too wet and cold for way to long using the slow route. Safety is always on my mind, but you can start out a little faster and still be safe for yourself, your friends and family, and other boaters. enjoy!
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Old 09-29-2012
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Re: One Week Courses

I agree that 101,103,104 combined can be good. I did it last June at Bay Breeze, Traverse City MI. It was a great experience, effective instructors, and good boats. It was closer to two weeks with the 104 as a six day flotilla experience. While I am still very much a learner I do feel confident that I can charter a day sail.
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