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  Topic Review (Newest First)
09-29-2012 04:58 PM
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.
09-18-2012 10:13 AM
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!
09-17-2012 02:38 PM
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.
09-17-2012 02:17 PM
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.
09-11-2012 06:27 PM
Re: One Week Courses

Thank you, thank you, thank you!
09-07-2012 10:52 AM
Re: One Week Courses

Did a 1-week, liveaboard/learn to sail course in the Carib with no prior experience. As Dinks said, it included systems as well as sailing. The instructor was awesome; I'd refer you but he's now retired. But yes, it was "dangerous" as 6 months later we felt we knew enough to buy our first boat, and about 4 years after that we sold our house and moved aboard fulltime. One of our friends is an instructor with Maryland School of Sailing; Chesapeake, Caribbean, Atlantic Ocean, Bermuda which offers similar courses in both Chesapeake Bay and Virgin Islands.
09-07-2012 08:23 AM
One Week Courses

My husband & I took the Blue Water Sailing School weeklong live aboard ASA 101,103, 104 & now have our bareboat certs. We could not be more pleased with our experience. Phenomenal instructor, Capt. Jennifer, with a lifetime of experience & a wonderfully patient demeanor. We had experience growing up sailing dinghys & smaller boats but hadn't done much in recent years or in bigger boats. After our week we are so much more confident not only in our sailing capabilities but in our understanding of the boats systems. You go through everything on the boat - the engine, the marine head system, the LPG stove, the cooling system. You learn maintenance tips & safety precautions. All the while you're sailing every afternoon, learning to anchor in the evening, cooking aboard, living aboard. We did our course out of Newport, RI because it was local to us & it was great because we practiced docking in busy Newport Harbor, sailed to Block Island in pea soup fog, anchored under sail when the engine failed. Invaluable experience. Highly, highly recommend blue water sailing School ESP With Capt. Jen.
09-06-2012 08:09 PM
Re: One Week Courses

I'm not sure how important this is, but the FairWind school appears to have been blackballed by the ASA, and has cooked up their own "certifying organisation" calling it ICSO. As far as I can tell, they're the only member.

My sense is that this doesn't really matter all that much, but if you want to take further ASA courses, you'll probably have to "challenge" the prerequisites by retaking those tests and paying a fee.

I met some people who took an ASA liveaboard course through Bluewater (?) Sailing School out of Ft Lauderdale and St Thomas, and they were pleased with it.
09-06-2012 07:36 PM
Re: One Week Courses

I had zero to little experience. I took a week long ASA course (101, 103, and 104) in a school in Ft. Lauderdale. I feel I was extremely lucky in that the instructor I had was a wealth of knowledge, a captain and owner of a busy delivery company, and extremely experienced. That is not to mention he was an extremely nice guy. The course was very well laid out, but instead of learning a, b, and c in that order only, he covered the material over the entire week despite doing the tests in the way the ASA required. Other than more and harder winds, I couldn't have asked for more.

At the end of the course, I felt confident and comfortable enough to charter a boat myself. Of course, these courses teach enough to be dangerous LOL............. You still need experience, which comes from hrs on the water. No substitute for that, but I don't think any school says there is.
09-06-2012 04:48 PM
Re: One Week Courses

Not trying to talk you out of doing the week long course, just pointing out a downside. The one week courses are good, but I do have an issue with "zero to 60" courses in general, even though I have taught them myself. For ASA, combining the first two levels (101 and 103) works pretty well, but to truly get the most out of the next level (104), I believe one should spend some time doing simple day sails, etc. before moving up. In other words, let the 103 training sink in a bit before tackling the 104 course. If you already have some experience, this doesn't apply.
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