Advanced Cruising

You will be able to make longer passages using more advanced boats. Please email sscsailing@gmail.com for dates.

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Five Day Cruise to Maine

The cruise will include open water sailing outside of Long Island Sound. Each student will enter and leave at least two different harbors at night, and four to five harbors in daylight, along with assisting the other students with 8-10 nighttime landfalls, and 20-25 daytime landfalls. Going in and out of unfamiliar harbors is generally the most stressful part about cruising.

We typically leave from Norwalk, and run in and out of many of the Connecticut harbors ending up in the Thimble Islands at the end of Day One. That evening we continue harbor hopping up the Connecticut coast in the dark, ending up near Old Saybrook.

Day Two starts with a final run of daytime harbor hops up to the Fishers Island area. We typically stop at Block Island for dinner, then head out to Cutty Hunk. Day Three starts with the tour of Martha’s Vineyard and the Elizabeth Islands, with mandatory stops at Tarpaulin Cove, Quicks Hole and the always exciting passage through the much feared, and rightly so, Woods Hole. By the end of Day Three we are typically off Cape Cod, heading north to Maine for our long overnight passage. On the afternoon of Day Four we are off what many consider one of the world’s finest cruising grounds, Mid-Coast Maine. We spend a day cruising the Maine coast, then, by Day Five we pull into Falmouth Foreside, Maine.

Naturally, the schedule will be adjusted based on the weather and class, and the final day of cruising the Maine coast sometimes is shortened, but no matter what, you will come out of the course much better prepared than when you started. You will have reefed, docked, navigated in the daytime and dark, and captained one of the most highly regarded performance cruising yachts more times than you can imagine, under the capable direction of your captain.

US Sailing Coastal Passagemaking Certification, a log book, and a certificate good for a 10% discount on your first charter or initial membership with us is included.

US SAILING logo (small)

You must have US Sailing’s Coastal Navigation and Bareboat certification for US Sailing Certification. However, we require Basic Cruising to take the course. See the US Sailing Standards for a more detailed look at what is covered. We review and build on what is learned in our Basic Cruising and Bareboat classes.

Topics include

  • Inspecting the boat, rigging and systems, going aloft
  • Man overboard drills with a Life Sling
  • Diesel servicing, emergency starting, bleeding the fuel system, changing an impeller
  • Trip planning, supplies & provisioning
  • Weather forecasting, planning crew jobs
  • Lightning, storm preparations
  • Navigation, dead reckoning, bearings
  • Preparing for 20-40 knots of wind
  • GPS, autopilot, radar & computer use
  • Different anchoring techniques
  • Advanced sail shape controls
  • Storing and deploying a dinghy
  • Single line docking, bow, stern in & alongside
  • Night, poor visibility navigation

The course features 6 hours of classroom time covering systems and navigation, followed by a five day cruise to Maine–over 70 hours of instruction.