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Old 01-16-2014, 05:32 PM   #1
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Trawler Schools?

Hi, My wife and I are looking into getting into cruising and I'd like to go take some classes to both learn about boating and make sure we really like living on the water before buying a boat.

I also think it will really help us find out things like what type of boat, how big, what we want on it and what we can do without.

Now to my question: Can any of you recommend really good Trawler Schools that specialize in taking total newbies and helping them get started at this grand adventure?

Thanks,
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Old 01-16-2014, 07:04 PM   #2
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I don't know of any trawler schools, but others here might. One option you have is to charter a trawler with a friend who is a boater. Then go out on the water and really experience what it's like to cruise in a trawler.

PS - You'll love it!
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Old 01-16-2014, 07:15 PM   #3
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I'd suggest hiring a captain who has a boat. It will also help to have a captain give some instruction to your wife. I've done this even though I have a lot of experience, when I buy a different boat, as it takes all the interpersonal interaction out of the equation.
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Old 01-16-2014, 07:18 PM   #4
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I did a course in 1999 it was 5 days on the boat with Southwest Florida Yachts in Ft Myers Fl. http://www.swfyachts.com/
By coincidence Tom aka "Loafs and Fishes" on this forum had booked the slot earlier and was willing to share the class with me. I feel the instructor was very good, the boat was a GB 36 twin engine it was fine too. We had a couple of days in port instruction, navigation, mechanical systems, docking etc then a three day, two night at anchor, mini cruise around Sanibel and Pine Island. Even had lunch on Cabbage Key, of Cheeseburger in Paradise fame.
SWFY are still in business but haven't had contact with them since.
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Old 01-16-2014, 07:46 PM   #5
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Arctic Traveler on this forum has a trawler school in Alaska. I've thought about taking it myself. Beauty being in the eye of the beholder I cannot think of too many places more beautiful to take a class.
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Old 01-16-2014, 08:02 PM   #6
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You could try Great Harbour in Florida. Last time I was on their website they still listed charters available with or without a captain. Sounds like a great idea for you and your wife. I am in the same position as you in looking and learning about these types of boats. Great Harbour is on my short list of dream boats. They are not for everyone but they would provide a good way to get on the water and get a feel for things. Who knows, you might just like them as well. Good luck. Pete
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Old 01-16-2014, 08:56 PM   #7
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You might try the power squadron too. There are many around. While it doesn't cover everything that you are looking for, it will get you into the community and you'll learn good basics you will need once you get a boat and go voyaging!
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Old 01-16-2014, 09:03 PM   #8
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You might contact Brian Pemberton at NW Explorations. They are a Grand Banks charter company in Bellingham, WA and have training available.

Power Boat Training | NW Explorations | Yacht Sales, Charters & Services in the Pacific Northwest

Not much of a commute from Las Vegas and a great area to learn boating.
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Old 01-16-2014, 09:52 PM   #9
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"Beauty is in the eye of the beer holder." Just a small correction.

I second the Power Squadron, at least you will know what's going on when you charter and you will be able to assess your captain(!). You'll have to learn all that stuff anyway, if you plan to keep your family safe.
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Old 01-16-2014, 10:22 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ti22 View Post
Hi, My wife and I are looking into getting into cruising and I'd like to go take some classes to both learn about boating and make sure we really like living on the water before buying a boat. I also think it will really help us find out things like what type of boat, how big, what we want on it and what we can do without. Now to my question: Can any of you recommend really good Trawler Schools that specialize in taking total newbies and helping them get started at this grand adventure? Thanks,
We spent 3 days with Captain Chris and Captain Alyse of Captain Chris Yacht Services on their Gulfstar training. I particularly like the training and women's perspective Alyse provided myself and my wife. As it turned out my wife had more time at the helm than I did (with Alyse at her side) and she gained much confidence in her ability to pilot the boat. I was the more experienced of the two of us but my wife learned more in three days than I could have taught her in three weeks. I would highly recommend them from our experience. They are frequent speakers at AGLCA events providing continue education to the cruising community.

http://www.captainchrisyachtservices.com

No financial interest just a satisfied cruising couple.

Norm Miller
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Sent from my iPad with big clumsy fingers using Trawler
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Old 01-16-2014, 10:29 PM   #11
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Annapolis Sailing School has some hands on powerboat classes over the summer.
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Old 01-16-2014, 10:51 PM   #12
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Our first venture into trawlers was with a 3 day bareboat charter class through AYC charters in Anacortes. Cruised through the San Juan's as we learned about the boat systems, some navigation, tides and currents, docking, MOB, and many other topics which qualified us for bareboat chartering.
It was a perfect way for us to implement a lot of the reading we had done.
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Old 01-17-2014, 09:31 AM   #13
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We offer hands-on trawler courses aboard Holly Day which include accommodations aboard, meals, and study materials. Details are on facebook.com/hollydaycharters. Hope this post doesn't violate any TF rules!
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Old 01-17-2014, 12:49 PM   #14
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Hi Ti22,
Are you planning to go full time live aboard on a trawler? What part of the country are you looking at as options? That also will help determine the kind of boat you may be looking for. Handling the boat as a new Captain, is the same. But the waters you cruise in will require different scenarios. California coastal vs Pacific Northwest will be a different type of cruising and change the things you need to know while handling the boat.
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Old 01-17-2014, 02:36 PM   #15
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Randall B, Good question. I hadn't even thought about that being a major consideration. San Diego is home. Relatives in Seattle. Sister in St. Mary's County, MD. Definitely not close together, but there are waterways from all to all! I'd be basing out of San Diego (or Ensenada).
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Old 01-17-2014, 07:07 PM   #16
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In that case, if you plan to cruise from San Diego(I lived in SD 3 different times) to Seattle, maybe to MD, you will want a trawler capable of making the trip safely. If you plan to cruise San Diego to Ensenada and back, the field is pretty wide open. Open water, even in San Diego can get rough, but not usually like the north coast. I've cruised both.
Anyway, if you come up to visit relatives in Seattle, I'll be happy to take you for a cruise and lessons on the Willard 40 or GB 32. No charge.
Trawlerfest is coming up in Anacortes in May which is a good resource for learning all things trawler.
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Old 01-18-2014, 08:16 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alormaria View Post
Annapolis Sailing School has some hands on powerboat classes over the summer.

That might be Annapolis School of Seamanship? I know they have some similar courses, and ICW course, etc...

-Chris
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Old 01-18-2014, 08:20 AM   #18
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Greetings,
Here's another but on the "wrong" coast. Chapman School of Seamanship - Courses Offered
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Old 01-18-2014, 09:27 AM   #19
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I would suggest Capt. Robert Hamilton, aka Capt. Bob.
Trawler School Charters - Hands on Trawler Handling Course in the Florida Keys
It sounds like you and your wife are in a similar position that my wife and I were in 4 years ago.
It's a great way to be exposed at a very reasonable cost. Perfect for a couple, not overwhelming and well balanced.

Richard in NYC for Now
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Old 01-18-2014, 09:46 AM   #20
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Depending on HOW you learn makes the difference in the best method to learn handling and seamanship. IMHO, as mentioned above, is to hire a captain locally to teach you on your own boat (although, in your case, this is a tad problematic). I have no experience with "trawler schools" so I will withhold any opinions on how well they teach what you actually need to know. I came to the table with a fair amount of general knowledge about things like channel markings, right-of-way, safety gear, lighting, etc. so I would hope that if you have little to no prior knowledge of this kind of stuff, the yea, perhaps a bit of classroom time is a great idea.

As for helping you decide what kind of boat you want/need, I would be careful there. I suspect a lot of information will go over your head if you are not already an owner. A long walk in local marinas will be a good start, then, assuming you can find an honest one, get a local broker that can show you boats for sale in your area and help you narrow down the search. There is a lot to learn by just nosing around lots of boats that aren't even trawlers.

Of course, the TF community is here to help as well. Just nose around on the past threads and subjects. There is a ton of info here.
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