Advanced Boating Classes Offered

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Want to learn how to plot your own course? Do you understand how to read the signs of changing weather in Southwest Florida? Beginning in January, two in-depth classes will be offered at the San Carlos Bay Sail and Power Squadron facility to help you develop these skills.

Piloting is the first course in the sequence of United States Power Squadron’s advanced courses covering the basics of coastal and inland navigation. This course focuses on navigation as it is done on recreational boats today and embraces GPS as a primary navigation tool while covering enough of traditional techniques so the student will be able to find his/her way even if their GPS fails. The course includes many in-class exercises, developing the student’s skills through hands-on practice and learning. The course will held on Tuesdays at 1:30pm, starting January 19 and running for 6 weeks with a take-home final exam. Cost: $75 for USPS members, or $110 for non-members.

The 5-week weather course focuses on how weather systems form, behave, move and interact with one another and reflects the availability of all sorts of weather reports and forecasts on the Internet. Wx2012 is a general weather course benefiting those sitting in their living rooms, as much as those standing behind the helm. This course meets on Thursdays starting January 28 at 1:00pm and includes an in-class final exam. Cost: $63 for USPS members, or $126 for non-members.

America’s Boating Course

This basic boating course will be offered on two Saturday mornings, January 9th and 16th. The final exam will be held on the 16th. Classes run from 8:30am to approximately 12:30pm with sign-in at 8:15 on the first Saturday.

Topics covered include hull design, docking, anchoring, handling boating emergencies, reading channel markers and many other topics to make each boating experience safer and more enjoyable. Students who complete the course are eligible to join the United States Power Squadron (USPS) at a discounted rate offering 18 months of membership for the price of 12 months.

This course is recognized by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) and satisfies the Florida state requirement that anyone born after January 1, 1988 must pass a safe boating course in order to operate a boat with more than 10 HP. Each student will receive a Florida Boater’s card, valid for life, from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission, upon successfully completing the class.

The cost of the course is $45.00 with a $20.00 additional cost for a second person sharing the instructional materials.

Courses are offered by The San Carlos Bay Sail & Power Squadron, a unit of the United States Power Squadrons serving South Fort Myers, Fort Myers Beach, Bonita Springs, and Estero. All courses are offered at the San Carlos Bay Squadron’s Boating Education Center located at 16048 San Carlos Boulevard, Fort Myers (at the corner of Kelly Road, across from Ace Hardware.) Interested prospective students should call the Squadron office at (239) 466-4040 and leave a message.