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post #1 of 19 Old 02-16-2016 Thread Starter
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Mixing ASA and RYA?

My girlfriend and I took ASA 101 on a lake in Texas. yay. We've been sailing a fair amount on an Albin 30 with friends. We'll start expanding the different types of boats on the lake over the summer.

Now we're looking at taking 103 and 104 and beyond.

Ultimately we'd like to crew on other's boats and get our own for more than coastal excursions. (Doesn't everyone dream of far off passage making?)

In discussing next steps, she pointed out that we should go somewhere we've never been for our next classes. Considering input from this board on other threads, that means places with real tides.

I've been all over the PNW, so we're considering Northern Europe. Since language is a factor, we're considering England, Ireland or Scotland.

There are ASA schools over there, but there are also a lot more RYA schools.

Can we switch over from ASA to RYA or other schools?
Will ASA 101 and sailing on a lake in Texas prepare us for 103 and 104?
Can anyone suggest locations and schools outside of the US where we can take courses in tidal waters?

As always, thanks in advance for your input!
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post #2 of 19 Old 02-16-2016
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Re: Mixing ASA and RYA?

Go and do RYA Day Skipper, theory and practical, on the Solent in England. The course is bareboat skipper level and the Solent has reasonable height tides, strong tidal streams, difficult entries and lots of shallows and aids to navigation and lots and lots of commercial traffic. You will get a great deal of experience that is hard to get in the USA.

Do it in Spring and you will get some exciting winds.

Combined RYA Day Skipper Practical Course - BOSS Fastrak

Good luck Phil

Last edited by Yorksailor; 02-18-2016 at 12:44 PM.
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post #3 of 19 Old 02-16-2016
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Re: Mixing ASA and RYA?

You've been all over the PNW and haven't encountered real tides? :-)

One way to look at it is to ask yourself why you are taking the classes. We tend to get caught up in the certification and lose sight of the real goal: learning to sail. I found it was often easier on us to just book a boat and an instructor and use the official curriculum as a guideline rather than an end in itself. We learned at our pace and if I haven't done the sailing onto a mooring ball thing yet, well how often is that going to come up? :-)

Having said that, the Solent idea sounds like an awesome opportunity regardless of who's certification is being offered.
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Gaudeamus igitur iuvenes dum sumus...
before it's too late
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post #4 of 19 Old 02-18-2016
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Re: Mixing ASA and RYA?

I know the OP asked about non-US locations. But I'm going to put that aside.

If you want real tides with the associated real currents, plus the joy challenging wind conditions... try the San Francisco Bay.
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post #5 of 19 Old 02-18-2016
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Re: Mixing ASA and RYA?

I agree with MacBlaze: Go sailing and learn. The "certificate" is only as valuable as your experience. It doesn't mattter who authenticates the event. I have no certificates. I have not taken any ASA or RYA, Glenans, or USailing courses. But I have sailed. People have asked me to help them sail coastwise, transatlantic, and on multiple Bermuda, Mackinac and other races. Get experience out on the water and learn as much as possible each time you leave the dock. You will find out that a piece of paper is just that, and your abilities are not defined by it.
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post #6 of 19 Old 02-19-2016 Thread Starter
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Re: Mixing ASA and RYA?

odd. I thought I replied to this.

I agree that paper is just paper. I want to be able to rent sailboats in different places. I'll buy a boat someday, but in the meantime, I want to sail on as many different boats as possible.

Living in the middle of Texas, I figured the best way would be to travel and take classes.
Booking a boat and instructor sounds like a good idea as well.
We could always sign up to crew on boats. A lot of variables would have to fall into place: crew as a couple? Location we'd like to learn in? right time frame for work?
I need to look into crewing for races down in the Houston, Port Arthur, Corpus Christi, etc.

@mrichmon : San Francisco bay would be beautiful! I'd like to do that too.
@MacBlaze : ha, good point. I haven't SAILED in the PNW. I love that idea too, but would like a new place just for a change in scenery.
@York sailer: Thanks! I'll look into that. That's exactly what I was thinking about.
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post #7 of 19 Old 02-19-2016
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Re: Mixing ASA and RYA?

If you're looking for somewhere exotic my wife and I just got back from St. Vincent and the Grenadines. The entire area is jaw dropping beauty. The conditions were perfect, the tradewinds blow 20-30 from the east for the entire dry season. The company we booked with is also excellent. Barefoot Offshore Sailing School out of St. Vincent.
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post #8 of 19 Old 03-09-2018
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Re: Mixing ASA and RYA?

Quote:
Originally Posted by helmsovr View Post
If you're looking for somewhere exotic my wife and I just got back from St. Vincent and the Grenadines. The entire area is jaw dropping beauty. The conditions were perfect, the tradewinds blow 20-30 from the east for the entire dry season. The company we booked with is also excellent. Barefoot Offshore Sailing School out of St. Vincent.
My wife and I just did the same. We got our 101/103/104/114 through Barefoot Offshore.

Getting to St. Vincent and the Grenadines is an adventure in itself unless you're Canadian. We flew into St. Lucia on Delta and then used SVG Air to get to St. Vincent. SVG Air uses small twin-prop planes that are sort of a shuttle. St. Lucia to St. Vincent isn't a direct flight and depending on where people need to go that day, you may end up landing on 3 other islands (Bequia, Union, Canouan) before getting to St. Vincent. That was the case for us. On the way back to St. Lucia, we only stopped at one other island (Mustique). Lots of interesting landings and take-offs!

Let's not kid ourselves, if you don't have a lot of sailing experience, doing 101/103/104 and maybe 114 also in a week is a lot. It's a ton of information to learn and skills to master in a week's time. We got it done, but were pretty mentally and physically exhausted at the end of the trip. That said, it was an amazing feeling of accomplishment.

The conditions in St. Vincent and the Grenadines were challenging as well, which pushed us along a bit quicker as well. Days of 25 kts winds and 8-10 ft seas gave us some good experience. Our last day was a beat in 30 kts and 11-13 ft seas and it was a blast!

Is a week of training going to make you a competent sailor? No way! But, it's a good way to jumpstart your knowledge and get you some great experience. Take a look at what it would cost to rent a sailboat for 7 days and then compare that to the experience of living on a sailboat for a week and it's a pretty good value.

Edit: I realized I didn't do a very good job of answering your questions.

- I'm not super familiar with RYA so I can't answer if RYA will accept your 101. I do know that RYA is viewed by many as superior to ASA and that RYA gives you a path to an ICC which is required for many spots in the Med.

- As far as whether you can go from a 101 and some sailing experience to doing your 103/104? In my case it was yes. I did 101/103/104/114 on the same trip with very little prior sailing experience. If you and your wife both have some experience under your belt, it shouldn't be too difficult for you. The written tests aren't difficult if you study. I got a 100 on my 101, a 97 on my 103 a 95 on my 104 and a 98 on the 114. The on the water practical skills are what seem to trip up some people. You need a good "wind sense" and the ability to go from one point of sail to another and be able to tell others what they need to do to help get there. One of the skills you'll do is a 360 degree turn going through all points of sail with a pause at each point to ensure proper trim and a steady course.

Last edited by isuee94; 03-09-2018 at 09:59 AM.
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post #9 of 19 Old 03-09-2018
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Re: Mixing ASA and RYA?

Does this help?
RYA or ASA course? What?s the difference?

I get the impression that RYA does not accept ASA certificates on a "one-for-one" basis, since the stated levels and curricula don't match up completely, ie they have a "crew" level whereas ASA doesn't Maybe they allow you to "test out" of a particular category based on your experience, taking your ASA cert into consideration?? I don't know.

But yeah, experience is the main thing, most of us older sailors learned before there was such a thing as ASA or RYA. There was just, "learned it by doing, no certificate", or "I tallied up my time, and sat for a Coast Guard license". I fall into the latter category.

I also teach part-time. Sailing is sailing, lake or ocean (or even iceboats ;-) Learn to sail--wherever-- and the rest of it is "electives", like provisioning, navigation/piloting, figuring out weather, respect for the elements, common sense, and the right mixture of confidence and humility.
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post #10 of 19 Old 04-26-2018
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Re: Mixing ASA and RYA?

Quote:
Originally Posted by nolatom View Post
I get the impression that RYA does not accept ASA certificates on a "one-for-one" basis, since the stated levels and curricula don't match up completely, ie they have a "crew" level whereas ASA doesn't. Maybe they allow you to "test out" of a particular category based on your experience, taking your ASA cert into consideration?? I don't know.
It's a non-issue. The RYA is very pragmatic about such matters, and a student can enter its cruising scheme at virtually any stage, without requirement of having completed previous RYA courses. See further Sail cruising | Courses | Learning | Courses & Training | RYA.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nolatom View Post
Most of us older sailors learned before there was such a thing as ASA or RYA.
You must be very old indeed. The RYA has been around since 1875. Its training committee dates from 1967, and the Yachtmaster Qualifications Panel from 1971.
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