Course Descriptions

How do you become a confident sailor when you’ve 
got more knots in your stomach than in the rigging?

Sailing Charter Certification Course

This course is a comprehensive preparation for a lifetime of sailing. It is designed for students who have no sailing experience, small boating experience or limited boat handling experience. With an emphasis on practical training and experience, you will learn all the essentials of sailing quickly and more thoroughly than you thought possible. All in three days!

Your two hour classroom session on the first morning of your sailing class will be followed by 22 hours of hands on boat handling with three other students on a 29′-30′ cruising sailboat. See Sailing’s article, Here’s Proof, describing our Sailing Charter Certification Course.

Your sailing instructor will demonstrate and you will immediately practice the techniques you just learned in sailing class. Read the Sample Sailing Lesson by one of our instructors.

 Our Sailing Charter Certification course includes
• online home study program
• two-hour classroom
• 22 hours of on-the-water-training in a three day vacation atmoshere

• $895 for the 1st enrollment, $745 for each additional. (Includes all class materials.)

• $200.00 per student deposit required with registration.

• Balance due 30 days before sailing class begins.

Successful completion prepares you to
• Captain or crew 30′ boats in light to moderate conditions, in familiar waters.
• Crew on similar sized yachts in open water and more challenging conditions.
• Captain or crew in the Caribbean.

Good to know
• Four-to-one student-to-instructor ratio.
• Our guarantee provides you with the peace of mind that if you are not certified at the end of the three days, as determined by our USCG instructor, you have the option to retake the course for no additional course fee. When bareboat chartering, for safety reasons, you will be required to have at least one experienced crew member. Learn to Sail with family & friends and save!

 Sailing Class Study Materials
• The Sailor’s Handbook
– textbook by Halsey Herreshoff
• Online Home Study Program
• Reference Materials
• Even a line to practice your knots!

 Captain Certification
• Boat systems & vessel maintenance
• Knots, line handling and sailing terminology
• Steering under both power and sail
• Maneuvering in tight harbors
• Sails and roller furling systems
• Understanding sail trim
• Reefing and storm sails
• Docking principles and forces
• Anchoring techniques
• Chart interpretation
• Navigation, GPS and time/speed/distance calculations
• Rules of the Road under sail and power
• Weather conditions, storms, fog and waves
• Direct crew in overboard & other emergency exercises


Crew Certification

Perfect for family members or individuals wishing to become a more skilled and confident crew member. Even if you know the fundamentals of sailing, you will become confident with your newly acquired “bareboat” cruising skills when you complete your sailing instruction with us. This course provides basic knowledge and skills enabling the individual to be capable crew. Students age 13-17 are welcome to take the Crew Certification Course, but must be accompanied by an adult.

• Basic boat systems and terminology
• Basics of docking, line handling and knots
• Sailing principles and points of sail
• Steering under power and sail
• Interpret charts and use GPS
• Practice anchoring
• Practice safety and emergency exercises
• Cost: $745/person



Photograph of a lovely sailboat heeled over and going fast. Waves are splashing.Advanced Offshore Course

If you’re looking to refine your newly learned sailing skills and charter larger boats?  Consider enrolling in our Advanced Offshore Course. Learn more about our Advanced Offshore Course.


We are united by a genuine love of sailing, and we share this love with our families, our friends, and through relationships with the broader sailing community.

Sailing School Locations and Dates

Enjoy the Apostle Islands just outside of Bayfield, Wisconsin on beautiful Lake Superior. Or the relaxed river town of Lake City and is located 65 miles southeast of the Twin Cities (Minneapolis & St. Paul, Minnesota).

Go from student to sailor in three days

In just three days, our students can complete a certification course that fully prepares them to sail any vessel on any water. We turn novice into know-how, in other words, and we instill confidence and competence into every participant. The proof? Over 12,000 sailors since 1980.