Welcome to Shearwater University

The four schools of Shearwater University are centered on the maritime and natural world of the Salish Sea.  Each school focuses on a different branch of knowledge.  Yet they are all linked through a common purpose of growing our boating skills and deepening our understanding of, and connection with, this spectacular northwest environment.


The two-part mission of Shearwater University is to:

1) Provide a place where boaters of all levels of experience can come to expand their skills and knowledge, and to increase the safety of themselves and others enjoying the Salish Sea

2) Provide learning opportunities that deepen our connection to the natural world of the Salish Sea and surrounding areas.

The Shearwater University Schools

School of Sailing


The Shearwater School of Sailing offers a wide range of classes for beginners to seasoned mariners, from half day clinics to multi day programs and customized lessons to meet your goals.

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School of Kayaking


The Shearwater School of Kayaking can get you started with a robust 3-day program focusing on skill & safety.  Or we can refine and your paddling skills through advanced classes.

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School of Navigation


Whether piloting a large yacht or a small kayak through the islands, all mariners need navigation skills.  Our classes give a thorough foundation to help you pilot the Salish Sea.

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School of Raven's Backyard

Raven’s Backyard

In the School of Raven’s Backyard, we enter the wilderness to deepen our relationship with the natural world – learning through immersion experiences in the arts and natural history .

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The Mountain and the Sea are excellent schoolmasters, and teach some of us more than we can ever learn from books.

John Lubbock