This Outward Bound sailing course is technically intensive and offers committed participants the opportunity to graduate with a US Sailing Basic Keelboat certification earned while sailing among the beautiful granite islands off the coast ofMaine. It is designed for people who may have little or no experience skippering tiller-steered boats, or have spent some time on the water and want to take an immersive next step in a lifetime of learning to sail.
We will teach you everything you need to know: packing your sea bag, loading a boat, living aboard, sail handling, anchoring, and navigating using chart and compass. One of Outward Bound's HI-30 sharpies will be your home and classroom for the entire course.
The Coast of Maine
Your wilderness classroom will be the Maine seacoast in and around Penobscot Bay. The coast of Maine, with its intricate and indented shoreline, is a unique segment of the North Atlantic seaboard. It is known for its picturesque beauty, abundant bays and harbors, rocky islands, and quiet coves. Our cruising area covers nearly 200 miles of theMaine coast, with countless rivers, bays, and islands to explore.
The coast of Maine is rich in history. The rocky, spruce-covered islands are the summits of a prehistoric mountain range and generations of inhabitants have made their livelihoods here. Evidence left behind on the islands reveals the historic presence of indigenous Abenaki camps, post-colonial timber and farming operations, granite quarries, and centuries of fishing. Cold, nutrient-rich waters flow from the Canadian Maritimes, and make the Gulf of Maine home to a wide range of sea birds, harbor seals, porpoise, and several types of whale.
Once you arrive at Wheeler Bay you will get a basic introduction to your boat, meet your crew and receive briefings on emergency procedures. As soon as your sea bags and expedition supplies are packed, you will cast off lines and begin your adventure into the wilderness on the water, where the real magic takes place.
Our courses are "expedition-based," which means that you will leave the base camp on the first day and not return until the end of your course. You will travel with all of the food and equipment you need to conduct your expedition. You will row or sail every day, developing skills as you travel along your planned route. You will have formal classes every day and can expect to be evaluated on your progress throughout every day of the expedition. You will receive feedback from your crew and instructors daily to help keep you focused on improving your skills.
It takes an entire crew to sail or row our boats well; the whole crew must participate both mentally and physically. In addition to the challenges of moving the boat and mastering new skills, living together aboard this small vessel requires commitment to the support of your crewmates and your community as a whole, even in your most challenging moments. As your expedition progresses, your accomplishments in all these areas will result in a truly memorable journey.
Since we will be on expedition, we will be entirely self-sufficient. This means no showers, no bathrooms, no telephones, no television or any other modern luxury that you may be accustomed to. At the end of the week you will take your final exams to demonstrate your mastery of the skills necessary to safely skipper a small tiller-steered keelboat.
If you pass your evaluations and have been an active and full participant in the expedition, you will receive your US Sailing Basic Keelboat Certification. You should come to your course physically and emotionally prepared for and excited about devoting all of your time and energy to your expedition, your group and your Outward Bound experience.
To apply for this course click the apply button next to the course dates that work for you. The non-refundable application fee of $125 is due at the time of application. Full course tuition and in-course transportation fee are due within 60 days of course start date. Course tuitions listed do not include our application fee or transportation fee. You can also call one of our expert Admissions Advisors at 866-467-7651.